Edinburgh is perhaps the greatest city in all of Scotland, and rightly so, as it is the capital of this proud nation. It has successfully mixed history with modern culture. The city lies on a number of extinct volcanoes and rocky crags which rise from the generally flat landscape and overlooks the shoreline of the Firth of Forth to the north. Robert Louis Stevenson, and Sir Walter Scott called this city home.
The city is divided into two, very distinct sections. The New Town was systematically laid out during the Enlightenment and is made up of cosmopolitan buildings. The Old town, is a typical mideval setting, with cobblestone streets, dark, narrow alleyways, and stone-sided buildings. Set on a crag in the Old Town, stands Edinburgh Castle. The castle is Edinburgh’s best known and most popular attraction. It has breathtaking views of Edinburgh and is interesting to young and old alike. Several military reenactments take place here every year and the most famous cannon in the world: Mons Meg is fired daily at 1 p.m. A wonderful look at the wild beauty of Scotland’s scenery can be had immediately beyond the palace in Holyrood Park, which is dominated by Arthur’s Seat, a volcano.
In August and early September, around a million visitors flock to the city for the Edinburgh Festival. You can also visit the National museum of Scotland which houses many of Scotland’s most precious artifacts. One note about the timing of your visit: Scottish winters are frigid!