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Edinburgh - Capital of Scotland

It is easy to see what attracts visitors to Edinburgh with one of Europe's most charming old cores complementing a ‘New Town', much of which itself dates back to the 17th and 18th centuries.

The city has a lot to offer the visitor from the modern design of the new Scottish Parliament Building to the breath taking views on Arthur's Seat of the city below.

To the south rise the Pentland Hills and in the north the city is flanked by the Firth of Forth and its sprinkling of uninhabited islands.

www.edinburgh.org

Top 10 things to do in Edinburgh

Edinburgh Castle

Edinburgh Castle is an ancient stronghold which dominates the sky-line of the city of Edinburgh from its position atop the volcanic Castle Rock. As one of the most important fortresses in the Kingdom of Scotland, Edinburgh Castle has been involved in many historical conflicts, from the Wars of Scottish Independence in the 14th century, up to the Jacobite Rising of 1745, and has been besieged, both successfully and unsuccessfully, on several occasions.

The Castle is now in the care of Historic Scotland, and is Scotland's second-most-visited tourist attraction. Although the garrison left in the 1920s, there is still a military presence at the Castle, largely ceremonial and administrative, and including a number of regimental museums. It is also the backdrop to the annual Edinburgh Military Tattoo, and has become a recognisable symbol of Edinburgh and of Scotland.

www.edinburghcastle.gov.uk

Holyrood Palace

The Palace of Holyroodhouse is the official residence of the Monarch of the United Kingdom in Scotland.

The Palace stands at the bottom of the Royal Mile in Edinburgh, the opposite end to Edinburgh Castle. Queen Elizabeth II spends one week in residence at Holyrood at the beginning of each summer, to host garden parties and official ceremonies. She then continues to Balmoral Castle (which she owns) for her annual two-month summer holiday.

www.royalcollection.org.uk/default.asp?action=article&ID=36

Royal Botanic Garden

The Botanics at Edinburgh is a hugely important player in the worldwide network seeking to ensure that biodiversity is not further eroded. Nearly 34,000 plants are grown at the Botanics in Edinburgh or its three smaller offshoots located in other parts of Scotland.

These represent nearly 17,000 different species from all over the world, or about 7% of all known plant species. People travel to Edinburgh from all over the world to see them, to appreciate them, and to learn about them.

www.rbge.org.uk

National Museum of Scotland

The unusual, the weird and the wonderful – all under one roof.

That's a direct quote from the National Museum of Scotland's website. There are many great exhibitions on display and these change regularly so it's best to check the website and see what's on.

The roof-top Tower Restaurant is an award winning dining experience with views of the Castle.

www.nms.ac.uk

National Gallery of Scotland

The National Gallery Complex is one of Scotland’s top free visitor attractions and Edinburgh’s second most-visited attraction after the Castle.

It is made up of three interconnected buildings, right in the heart of Edinburgh. The National Gallery of Scotland is home to a major part of Scotland’s sensational national collection of fine art; the Royal Scottish Academy Building (RSA) is one of Europe’s premier venues for international exhibitions; and the Weston Link, which lies beneath the two buildings, connects them together with areas for shopping, learning, eating and drinking.

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www.nationalgalleries.org

Dynamic Earth

Just 10 minutes walk from the Waverley Train Station this old brewery has been converted in to a stone amphitheatre capped with a translucent tent.

With audio and visual clips, simulated earthquakes, meteor showers, views from outer space, strange creepy crawlies, as well as live sharks and dolphins, torrents of rain falling every 15 minutes and so much more, you and the children will be transported to other worlds for a few hours at this never to be forgotten attraction.

www.dynamicearth.co.uk

Scotch Whisky Heritage Centre

Situated right next to Edinburgh Castle on the Royal Mile, the Scotch Whisky Heritage Centre is one of Scotland's best whisky attractions.

Take a barrel ride as you actually become part of the whisky making process. Discover the stories behind maturation - the secret and magical ingredient of time. Explore Scotland’s diverse whisky regions and the flavours that the countryside imparts to its whiskies.

Your guide will then allow you access to our vault containing the Diageo Claive Vidiz Scotch Whisky Collection; the world’s largest collection of Scotch Whiskies.

The Amber Restaurant associated with the centre is one of the best restaurants in Edinburgh. Quality food in an intimate setting.

www.whisky-heritage.co.uk

Royal Yacht Britannia

This magnificent ship has played host to some of the most famous people in the world. But, above all, she was home to Her Majesty The Queen and the Royal Family.

Now in Edinburgh you are welcome on board to discover the heart and soul of this most special of royal residences.

The ship is berthed at Ocean Terminal in Edinburgh's historic port of Leith.

www.royalyachtbritannia.co.uk

Forth Bridges

The 2.5 km. (1.5 mile) Forth Railway Bridge, the world’s first major steel bridge, with its gigantic girder spans of 521 m. (1710 ft.) ranks as one of the great feats of civilization. It was begun in 1883 and formally completed on 4 March 1890 when HRH Edward Prince of Wales tapped into place a ‘golden’ rivet.

The Forth Road Bridge when opened, on 4 September 1964 by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, was the largest suspension bridge in Europe, and, together with the approach viaducts is over 2½ km. (over 1½ miles) long.

www.forthbridges.org.uk

Hopetoun House

Hopetoun House is one of the most splendid examples of Georgian architecture in Britain being the work of Scottish architects Sir William Bruce and William Adam.

Situated just outside Edinburgh, the House is set in 150 acres of rolling parkland with extensive woodland walks, breathtaking vistas over the River Forth and a deer park.

www.hopetounhouse.com

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Temperature & Rainfall Guide for Edinburgh

Climate graph for Edinburgh

More details from Climate Charts

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City Centre Map


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Great Airfare Deals to Edinburgh

Book your airplane ticket to Edinburgh now. Use our list of airline providers to find discount flights to Edinburgh.

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Quick City Info

Currency

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Dialling To Edinburgh

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Local Edinburgh Time

Edinburgh City Map

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Air

Edinburgh Airport

Rail

Waverley

Haymarket

Underground

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Sea

Leith Newhaven Harbour

Rosyth Ferry Terminal

Road

Edinburgh Bus Station

Lothian Buses

First Bus

Tourist Info Centres

Edinburgh Tourist Information

Travel Essentials

Hotel Deals in Edinburgh

Edinburgh has many great hotels and accommodations. Make sure you get the best price for your hotel or accommodation in Edinburgh

Car Hire

Make the most of your holiday and hire a car in Edinburgh.Find out who has the best car hire deals.

Travel Insurance

Ensure you and your family are covered in Edinburgh for any mishaps with some great travel insurance deals.

Travel Extras

Make sure you check out our handy travel extras section for useful information to help you plan your holiday.

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