Edinburgh, Scotland is famed for its highlands, and more than just a little of this is evident in its capital city. Edinburgh is rife with undulating streets and steep hills that have been celebrated by British writers for centuries.
‘What a wonderful city Edinburgh is!’ said Samuel Taylor Coleridge, ‘what alternation of height and depth.’ This beautiful city is filled with medieval wonders and modern pleasures. A walking trip based there will inevitably be a richly rewarding one.
European cities, which typically developed over time from medieval settlements, are usually more compact that their counterparts. Edinburgh is the perfect example of this fact. The good news is that most of its many attractions are easily accessible to even less seasoned walkers.
Two of the cities most famous and interesting landmarks, for example, are separated by a street only a mile long. In fact, a Royal Mile.
One of the cities more popular walks, the Royal Mile, connects Edinburgh Castle, a fortification built in the sixth century, with Holyroodhouse, founded in the fifteenth century. Holyroodhouse is still the British Royal family’s official Scottish residence today.
Begin at the Castle, which sits atop a volcanic crag, and stroll down the Mile. There are myriad wonders to visit along the way to Holyroodhouse. Stop in the camera obscura in the Outlook Tower for a panoramic view of the city. You will see the Scotch Whisky Heritage Centre, Parliament House, and the Museum of Childhood.
The city is divided into the Old and New Towns. The latter was developed around 1770 to help alleviate overcrowding in the city’s older quarters.
Both sides of the city offer wonderful walking opportunities. The narrow streets of the medieval Old Town offer a wonderful contrast to the elegance of the New. Whether you wish to explore the sights of a real medieval city or stroll down the undulating streets of classic Georgian times, Edinburgh has something to offer.
After a long day of walking, what better way to refresh yourself than with a traditional meal of Scottish salmon or Angus beef, and a glass of world famous Scotch whiskey? After a sound sleep, you will no doubt awake echoing the words of George Elliot, ‘When I looked out in the morning it is as if I had waked in Utopia.’