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Edinburgh: the historic capital of Scotland

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Edinburgh (453,000 inhabitants) is a beautiful historic city. Capital of Scotland since 1437 and seat of the Scottish Parliament since 1999. The city is located on the east coast of Scotland along the southern shore of the Firth of Forth. The historic areas of the city (Old and New Towns) were declared World Heritage Sites by UNESCO in 1995.

Every year, throughout the month of August, Edinburgh hosts an International Festival, with numerous events. Among these, the most important event is the Edinburgh International Festival, a festival dedicated to theater and classical music. Another important event on the Edinburgh program is the Edinburgh Fringe, a series of events dedicated to comedy.


The city’s attractions include the splendid Edinburgh Castle, excellent shops, numerous museums and three national galleries. Edinburgh’s historic center is divided in half by Princes Street. In the southern part the panorama is dominated by the Edinburgh Castle located on a volcanic cone and by the buildings of the Old Town. New Town overlooks the northern part of Princes Street.

In the area of the castle there are also the Mills Mount Battery, from where a blank cannon is fired every day. In the same area is the oldest building in the city, St Margaret’s Chapel. While not far away are the Royal Palace, built between the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries and the Scottish United Services Museum which houses relics of Scottish military history.


The Old Town retains its medieval atmosphere and is made up of houses that seem piled one on top of the other in perfect contrast with the orderly rows of houses in the new town. From the main street called Royal Mile, the secondary routes start in a herringbone pattern. Large squares – where markets once took place – surround the main public buildings and churches. The heart of the old town is Grassmarket, one of Edinburgh’s nightlife centers with numerous restaurants and pubs.


The New Town, located north of Princes Street was built in the late 18th century, it almost entirely maintains the original core which is a great example of Georgian era architecture. Holyrood Park, was the hunting ground of the kings of Scotland today is a park with a beautiful landscape. Other interesting places are the Royal Astronomical Observatory, St Giles’ Cathedral, the University of Edinburgh. Among the museums worth mentioning are the National Gallery of Scotland, which houses a large and important collection of works of art including the beautiful sculpture by Antonio Canova “The Three Graces”.

Finally, for a wonderful panorama of Edinburgh it is better to go to Calton Hill, one of the best viewpoints in the city. From here you can admire a panorama that includes the castle, Holyrood, Arthur’s Seat, the Firth of Forth, the new city and the whole extension of Princes Street.


Air flights: Edinburgh Airport is Edinburgh Turnhouse Airport (IATA: EDI) located 13 km west of the city center.

Getting around Edinburgh: Edinburgh has an efficient and widespread urban bus network, which allows frequent connections. The two main companies are Lothian Buses and First Edinburgh. Tickets are not interchangeable. Public transport allows you to easily access the surrounding areas, both inland and on the coast.

The climate of Edinburgh.



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