Exploring The Highlights Of Edinburgh Without A Tour Guide
Speaking about Edinburgh, it must be mentioned that this city is not by accident considered one of the most beautiful and most picturesque places in the United Kingdom. Here the medieval architecture is neighboring the elegant Georgian era in the city where everyone knows what partying is all about. Isn’t it an unusual combination? Staying in Edinburgh guarantees you a pleasant pastime! In addition, the city is just full of exciting sights and interesting cultural events. So, if a visit to Edinburgh is already included into your plans for the nearest future, take note of a few ideas that will make your visit to the city truly interesting!
Stroll along the Royal Mile – You will find this sight in the historic part of Edinburgh. It stretches almost for 2 kilometers taking start from Edinburgh Castle, rising over a spectacular cliff, gradually going down to the Palace of Holyroodhouse. Structurally, the Royal Mile consists of several streets, from which small alleys and squares are branching off in different directions. The Royal Mile fits perfectly into the urban landscape and seems to be an integral part of the Scottish capital. It is especially nice to walk along it in the evening, when the lights come out from the houses, signboards of shops and restaurants. Local pubs and cafes are literally filled with historic atmosphere and trade shops abound with national Scottish souvenirs.
Go to the Palace of Holyroodhouse – This official Queen’s residence is located at the end of the mentioned above Royal Mile, opposite the Arthur’s Seat Hill. This palace is closely connected with the country’s rich history. While touring the palace visitors will drop in many halls and chambers. Some of them are used by Elizabeth II and her family for holding the state ceremonies and official receptions. The other premises, such as chambers of Mary Queen of Scots, keep the memory of the historical events.
In cloudy weather Holyroodhouse looks somewhat gloomy, recalling stories of adventure novels and drama of the Middle Ages. However, this fact only adds to the glory of the palace and the historic surroundings, without which it would not look so bright.
Take Edinburgh Literary Pub Tour – This quite an original Edinburgh tour is by all means very educational. During the tour two funny guys named Clart and McBrain will guide tourists to the favorite pubs of Scottish writers and poets, telling in the meanwhile about the history of the country and its literature in a facetious way. Starting at Beehive Inn pub, known as the favorite place of the poet Robert Burns the end-point of the route will be Royal Bar, famous throughout Scotland for its expensive interior decoration. The tour is held two times a day and every traveler is highly recommended to experience it!
Admire the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo Event – The event is a grandiose musical and theater festival, which is held annually in the first three weeks of August. Military bands, drummers, bagpipers, singers, acrobats and cheerleaders from different parts of the world are participating in it. Over 40 countries are presented during the show. Loud music and visual installations are designed to display different eras. Apart from the members of the royal family, this annual event gathers at Edinburgh Castle an audience of around 200 thousand people. This is truly an unparalleled spectacle!
Go to see Nessie – Almost for everyone Loch Ness is primarily associated with a huge monster dwelling or not dwelling in its depths. If you have a day off in Edinburgh, set off to the well-known and mysterious sight of the country. Those who are curious to see the elusive monster called Nessie can take one day bus tour from the center of Edinburgh. However, if you want to get there with higher comfort, you can rent a suitable vehicle at Edinburgh Airport. Well, even if you don’t believe in the legend, you should go to the lake at least for one purpose – to enjoy the magnificent scenery and undisturbed nature!
Go to Rosslyn Chapel – This place is well known to the fans of “The Da Vinci Code” by Dan Brown. According to the writer the Holy Grail is kept there. The final scenes of the movie of same name were also filmed there. Rosslyn Chapel is located near Edinburgh, and some researchers believe that this place is mysterious and even mystical. Inside the chapel quite interesting and beautiful images were found. Entering it, you find yourself in the dark realm, which prepares a lot of surprises for you. The walls are decorated with stone sculptures and relief images, on which biblical scenes with Isaac, Samson, and David are recreated. Particular attention is drawn to the Masonic symbols on the stones. In the basement of the chapel you can see cave paintings of adherents of different religions, which depict various plants.
Climb the Calton Hill – This hill is the most popular scenic view point, offering beautiful views of Edinburgh from the height of 171 meters. In addition, a few historical monuments and buildings are also located on the hill. Broad avenues designed by the famous Scottish architect surround the hill from three sides. You can see there very beautiful houses, in which the descendants of French kings, artists and other prominent and wealthy people used to live. The fastest way to get onto the hill is from the southwest, starting from Waterloo Place.
In fact, the mentioned above is by no means a complete checklist of things that you might want to do in Edinburgh. You can’t even imagine how many more interesting things you can learn about when you come to this amazing city!
Article written by Lily Berns, a writer and keen traveler. She enjoys traveling the world and exploring new attractions. Liked this article or found it helpful? Share it with your friends using the social share buttons below and or post a comment to let us know your feedback or any addition using the comment form below..