A list of the Main Attractions in and around
Edinburgh with images, websites, maps, and
The centre of Edinburgh is at the Waverley Train
Station and the Balmoral Hotel with the Clock
The city Tour Buses visit most
of the main attractions. These depart from St Andrew
Square in the city centre across from the Balmoral
Hotel, up St Andrew Street.
Click on the post-codes for maps and reviews.
Princes Street Gardens
A public park in the city centre by Waverley Train
Station, between the main shopping area of Princes
Street and Edinburgh Castle. The Gardens were created
in the 1820s, a great place to relax when shopping or
for views of the Castle. The two top attractions in
the Gardens are a Flower Clock and the Ross Fountain.
Rose Street and George Street are situated just
behind Princes Street with many popular shops and
Wiki . EH2 2HG . Image
In Princes Street Gardens. The 200ft high gothic
Scott Monument was built in 1844 to honour the
Walter Scott. There are 287 steps to the top,
from where you have views of Edinburgh and for miles
around. The steps are steep and narrow. Tel 0131 529
4068. Price guide about £6.
Web . Wiki . EH2 2EJ . Image
A neoclassical building between the two parts of
Princes Street Gardens. The building was designed by
William Henry Playfair, first opened to the public in
1859. It holds Scotland's top collection of European
paintings and sculpture from the Renaissance to
Post-Impressionism. Tel 0131 624 6200. FREE.
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The Edinburgh Dungeon
Between Princes Street and the Royal Mile on Market
Street. An amazing cast of theatrical actors, special
effects, stages, scenes and a walk through experience
that you see, hear, touch, smell and feel. Hilarious
fun, and a bit scary. Tel 0131 240 1041.
Website . EH1 1DF
In the centre of Edinburgh overlooking Princes Street
and Gardens. You can walk up to the Castle through
Princes Street Gardens, or follow one of the roads
up. This is the most visited tourist attraction in
Scotland. The Royal Mile runs from the Castle down to
the Palace of Holyroodhouse with lots of museums,
souvenir shops, attractions, and diners. Tel 0131 225
Web . RS Page . EH1 2NG . Image
Statue, Old Church & Graveyard off the Royal Mile
down from the Castle, just before St Giles Cathedral,
about 300 yards along the street named George IV
Bridge. The Old Church and Grave are across the road
from the Statue seen here, up a lane with a small
Church Museum, well worth a visit. Greyfriars Bobby
was a Skye Terrier that became famous after
reportedly spending 14 years guarding the grave of
his owner, John Gray, until he died himself on the
14th January 1872. There are also Graves in the
Churchyard with names used by JK Rowlin in her Harry
Potter Books. Tel 0131 225 1900. FREE.
Page . Website . EH1 2QQ
National Museum of
Just off the Royal Mile at George IV Bridge next to
Greyfriars Bobby. Dedicated to the history, people
and culture of Scotland. Opened in 1998, the museum
has Sculptures, prehistoric jewellery, The Monymusk
Reliquary, 10 of the Lewis chessmen, A Union Flag and
Scottish Flag raised by the Hanoverians and Jacobites
at the Battle of Culloden. Tel 0300 123 6789.
Website . RS Page . EH1 1JF
St Giles' Cathedral
Royal Mile a few hundred yards down from the Castle.
St Giles' Cathedral is the historic Church of
Edinburgh. Now known as the High Kirk of Edinburgh,
as it lost its cathedral status during the
reformation in the 1560s. One of the top historic
attractions in Edinburgh. Tel 0131 226 0674.
Web . RS Page . EH1 1RE . Image
Real Mary King's Close
At the High Street / Royal Mile, across from St Giles
Cathedral, over 400 years of history with a character
guide for myths, legends, deadly plague, and a famous
Website . EH1 1PG
John Knox House
Museum on the Royal Mile below St Giles Cathedral.
Built in the 1470s, John Knox House is one of
Scotland's top museums, with connections to the
Protestant reformation. The house was owned by James
Mosman, goldsmith to Mary Queen of Scots, and became
the last residence of John Knox, the Protestant
reformer. Tel 0131 556 9579.
Web . Wiki . EH1 1SR . Image
Peoples Story Museum
On the Royal Mile at 163 Canongate in the Tolbooth
from 1591, about the tough lifes of the working class
from the 1700s to 1900s. Tel 0131 529 4057.
Website . EH8 8BN . FREE
Museum of Edinburgh
On the Royal Mile at 142 Canongate in in Huntly House
from the 1500s, covers the history of Edinburgh and
decorative art. Tel 0131 529 4143.
Website . EH8 8DD . FREE
At the bottom of the Royal Mile. Completed in 2004 to
designs of the Catalan architect Enric Miralles. The
building was built to celebrate Scotland establishing
a new Parliament in 1999. The previous Scottish
Parliament merged with the English Parliament in
1707. The building attracts vast numbers of visitors
for its strange design. Tel 0131 348 5000. FREE.
Website . Wiki . EH99 1SP
At the bottom of the Royal Mile. Founded as a
monastery in 1128, the Palace of Holyroodhouse is The
Queen's official residence in Scotland. The Palace
has a long interesting history, such as Mary, Queen
of Scots lived here between 1561 and 1567, and kings
and queens have made the Palace their premier royal
residence in Scotland. Tel 0303 123 7306.
Web . RS
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Our Dynamic Earth
At the bottom of the Royal Mile. Displays of our
planet's past, present and future, with interactive
exhibits and technology such as 4D and 3D
experiences. You can see the creation of the Earth,
follow the planet through its evolution, and catch
glimpses of its future. Tel 0131 550 7800.
Website . UDS Page . EH8 8AS
At the bottom of the Royal Mile. 820 feet high hill
in Holyrood Park with a path all the way to the top
for great views over Edinburgh. There are also The
Grags at 750 feet with cliffs lower down for even
better views over Edinburgh. FREE
. Large Images
At the north end of Princes Street. 338 feet high
hill with a number of monuments on top and the City
Observatory, built to look like the Parthenon in
Athens from Princes Street. FREE
RS Page .
St Mary's Catholic
Off the north end of Princes Street down Leith Street
behind St James Quarter Shopping Centre, across from
the Omni Shopping Centre. Built from 1814. FREE
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St Paul's & St George's
On York Place across from St Mary's Cathedral. An
Evangelical Church of the Scottish Episcopal Church,
built from 1816. FREE
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Scottish National Portrait
On Queen Street a short walk west of St Paul's
Church. In a large Gothic Revival building completed
in 1890. Tel: 0131 624 6200. FREE
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St Mary's Episcopal
1.4 miles southwest of Edinburgh centre. The
foundation stone was laid on the 21st May 1874 by the
Duke of Buccleuch and Queensberry. The Nave of the
Cathedral was opened on the 25th January 1879. Tour
buses do not visit, only a short walk from the west
end of Queen Street or west end of Princes Street.
Tel 0131 225 6293. FREE
Website . RS Page . EH12 5AW
Royal Botanic Garden
1.4 miles northwest of Edinburgh centre. Opened in
1670 at St. Anne's Yard, by Holyrood Palace. It was
moved to this location at Inverleith in 1820. This is
the second oldest botanic garden in Britain, after
the one in Oxford. The Palm House, built in 1858, is
the highest in Britain. A new large visitor centre
was opened in 2011, free entry. Some tour buses visit
every 15 to 30 minutes. Tel 0131 248 2901.
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Royal Yacht Britannia
Port of Leith 3 miles north of Edinburgh centre. This
ship was home to Her Majesty The Queen and her
family. Now permanently berthed at Ocean Terminal in
Edinburgh so you can board to view one of the most
special of royal residences. Some City Sight Seeing
buses visit the Britannia every 15 to 30 minutes.
Service buses run to and from the city centre every
10 minutes, about £1.50 each way, these buses
are marked Ocean Terminal. The Ocean Terminal also
has a large modern shopping mall and multi bar/
diners /restaurants with views of the yacht. Tel 0131
Website . EH6 6JJ . Image
Leith centre is an interesting place to visit with
many bar diners and ships converted to hotels and
restaurants, that you can visit for meals.
Granton Harbour - Firth of
Trips, diving and fishing 3 miles northwest of
Edinburgh. Based in Granton Harbour, Edinburgh. Enjoy
cruises around the Islands of the Forth to view seals
and their pups as the lie on the beaches, or the many
species of seabirds of the Forth. Tel: 0777 4103
Website . EH5 1HF
4 miles southwest of Edinburgh centre on Corstorphine
Hill with great views of the city. Built in 1913, it
attracts over 600,000 visitors a year, Scotland's
second most popular paid for tourist attraction,
after Edinburgh Castle. Regular inexpensive buses run
from the city centre. Tel 0131 334 9171. Large Images
Website . UDS Page . EH12 6TS
4 miles northwest of Edinburgh centre in thirty acres
of grounds with views across the Firth of Forth. It
was built in about 1590 for Sir Archibald Napier, and
extended in the 1820s. The preserved interiors were
decorated and furnished between 1902 and 1926, in
Edwardian style. Tel 0131 336 2060.
Website . EH4 6AD . Large Image
5 miles east of Edinburgh. A late 1600s mansion with
early 1700s decorative art and collections,
surrounded by a 1700s landscape. Step back in time
for an experience rated as 5 satrs by the Scottish
Tourist Board. Tel 0131 653 5599.
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6 miles south of Edinburgh. Britain's longest
challenging artificial ski slopes with tTwo main
slopes, three nursery slopes, jump slope, all
floodlit. Tel 0131 445 4433.
Website . EH10 7DU . Images
8 miles south of Edinburgh centre. Rosslyn Chapel,
originally named the Collegiate Chapel of St.
Matthew, is a 1400s church in the village of Roslin.
The Chapel is best known for its part in Dan Brown's
2003 best selling novel The Da Vinci Code, and the
2006 film. Tel 0131 440 2159.
Website . RS Page .
Forth Tours & Inchcolm
Trips from 9 miles northwest of Edinburgh centre with
regular buses from Edinburgh. Based at Hawes Pier,
South Queensferry. Tours to the Forth bridges and
Inchcolm Island on the Forth Belle. You can take an
optional 1 hour landing on Inchcolm Island to view
the Historic Abbey. Tel: 0131 331 3030.
Website . RS
Page . EH30 9TB
Forth Tours & Inchcolm
Trips from 9 miles northwest of Edinburgh centre.
Boat trips depart from the Hawes Pier in South
Queensferry, by Edinburgh. 1 hour sightseeing cruises
where you can get great views of the historic Forth
Bridges from our open top deck. Daily boat trips to
Inchcolm Island are consistently voted as one of the
best things to do in Edinburgh. Tel: 0131 331
Website . EH30 9TB
13 miles west of Edinburgh. One of the top Georgian
mansions in Britain designed by the Scottish
architects Sir William Bruce and William Adam. The
House is in 150 acres of parkland with many woodland
walks. Regular inexpensive buses run from Edinburgh
centre to South Queensferry, which is an interesting
town itself, you are then 3 miles from the house. A
local taxi can then be hired to Hopetoun House or you
can walk. Tel 0131 331 2451.
Website . RS Page . EH30 9RW
Deep Sea World
North Queensferry 14 miles west of Edinburgh. Deep
Sea World is an aquarium opened in 1994, on a site
below the Forth Rail Bridge with a collection of
large sand tiger sharks, and various other species of
shark. One of the top attractions is the 367 feet
long transparent underwater viewing tunnel, that is
one of the longest in the world. Trains run from Edinburgh
centre 15 mins travel crossing the Forth Rail
Bridge. Tel 01383 411 880.
Website . RS Page .
16 miles west of Edinburgh centre. Built in the 1400s
by the Crichtons, one of Scotland's most powerful
families, Blackness was built to serve as garrison
fortress, state prison and secure port for Linlithgow
Palace. Tel 01506 834 807.
Website . RS Page . EH49 7NH
Linlithgow 17 miles west of Edinburgh. The remains of
Linlithgow Palace are situated at the top of a hill
between the centre of Linlithgow town and Linlithgow
Loch. Birthplace of Mary Queen of Scots. In the
centre of Linlithgow with inexpensive trains and
buses running from Edinburgh all day to close to the
Palace. Tel 01506 842 896.
Website . RS Page . EH49 7AL
Kinneil House &
19 miles west of Edinburgh centre in a public park,
the oldest part of the house is a 1400s tower,
remodelled by the Earl of Arran between 1546 and
1550. The ruins of James Watt's cottage and the
boiler of his Newcomen Engine are on the the grounds.
The House is open to the public only on free open
days during the year, organised by Historic Scotland.
Other times, the building has to be viewed from the
outside. Tel: 0131 558 9326.
Website . UDS Page . EH51 0PR
National Museum of
23 miles east of Edinburgh. The museum is in the
wartime buildings of RAF East Fortune, one of the
best preserved wartime airfields in the UK. The
museum collections are one of the top in the UK,
covering military, civil and recreational aircraft.
Concorde is one of the most recent aircraft to be
displayed. Regular Buses run
from Edinburgh centre. Tel 0300 123 6789.
Website . RS Page. EH39 5LF