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Visitor Information


About Edinburgh

Edinburgh is Scotland’s capital city and the seat of its parliament.

It has two nicknames, ‘Auld Reekie’ and ‘The Athens of the North’. The first name is as a result of the smoke that once filled the city and the second to reflect its cultural and scholarly reputation.

The city is dominated by Edinburgh Castle, perched on top of an extinct volcano left exposed by the last ice age. It is believed that the castle area was settled in around 900BC. St Margaret’s Chapel dates back to the 12th century and David’s Tower to the 1370s. This tower was built for David II a son of Robert the Bruce. The castle forms part of the ‘Old Town’ with the streets off the Royal mile being steep and winding often lined by tall tenement buildings dating from the 16th Century. Below the castle is the ‘New Town’, where the wide streets and squares were planned and built in the 18th Century.

The Royal Botanic Garden, Edinburgh

A highlight of any visit to the Scottish Capital.  A national treasure of Scotland, this spectacular Living Collection is nearly 350 years old.

When visiting Scotland, a trip to the world-famous Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh is unmissable.  Visitors can experience an extravaganza of plants from around the world, learn about the Garden's rich and diverse Living Collection and discover a history dating back nearly 350 years.

Set in over 70 acres of beautiful landscape and just one mile north of the city centre, the Garden offers superb panoramic views of the city skyline featuring Edinburgh Castle.  The Botanics, as the Garden is affectionately known locally, is breathtaking at any time of year.

A highlight is a tour of the Garden's 10 magnificent Glasshouses including the Victorian Temperate Palmhouse and Tropical Palmhouse. With ten different climatic zones, from steamy tropics to arid desert, the Glasshouses are home to over 3,000 exotic plants from around the world.

Other highlights include the Rock Garden, the Alpine Houses, Woodland Garden, Pond, the Arboretum or tree collection, the Chinese Hillside, the Rhododendron Collection and the Scottish Native Plants Collection in the Heath Garden.

Visitors cannot help but leave with a deeper appreciation and understanding of the importance of plants in our world, and the need to support the Garden's important work.

For more information about the Living Collection at Edinburgh and further detail about the Garden's Terrace Cafe, Gateway Restaurant, Garden guided tours and accessibility, read on.

Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh is proud to be taking part in the Silent Space Scheme. Find out more on the Silent Space page.

The Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh is located just one mile from the City Centre


A detailed layout of the Botanic Gardens can be seen here

Edinburgh Castle, Castlehill, Edinburgh, EH1 2NG

Positioned at the top of the famous Royal Mile, it was a major defence structure for the city involved in many ancient battles. It was used as a Scottish Royal Residence until 1603, and remains an important historic monument. Today the castle is open to the public and receives over a million visitors every year. There are stunning panoramic views over the city and see the famous One O’Clock gun being fired. It was also used for the execution of about 300 women who were convicted of witchcraft. Places of interest within the castle include the Great Hall, Royal Palace, St Margaret’s Chapel and the National War Museum as well as the Crown Room where the Honours of Scotland (the Crown Jewels) are held. Also in the Crown Room is the Stone of Destiny which is the traditional coronation seat held previously at Scone Palace and Westminster Abbey.


Princes Street & Princes Street Gardens Edinburgh EH2

Princes Street is Edinburgh’s main shopping street, set in the shadows of Edinburgh Castle. Part of the city’s New Town, it was built during the reign of King George III and is named after his two sons, Princes George and Frederick.

The following is a list of some of the major attractions with web addresses.


National Museum of Scotland

Museum of Edinburgh

Our Dynamic Earth


Scottish National Gallery

Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art

Scottish National Portrait Gallery


Calton Hill

Princes Street Gardens

Royal Botanic Gardens

Corstorphine Hill


St Giles’ Cathedral

Greyfriars Kirk

National Trust Georgian House

Gladstone Land


Edinburgh Zoo

Ghost Tours*

Whisky Tours*

* Others available


Edinburgh CastleFeature-3

Another couple of Edinburgh photos here ?

Edinburgh Panorama


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