Edinburgh and the Lothians

We’ve compiled the best of the best in Edinburgh and the Lothians - browse our top choices for the top things to see or do during your stay.

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  • 1. Culross Palace

    Town/Village

    Don't let the name fool you: this 16th-century merchant's house was never a royal residence, and lacks the ostentatious grandeur of a palace...Read More

  • 2. Dean Village

    Dean Village | Neighborhood/Street

    Founded as a milling community in the 12th century, this pretty residential area offers a pleasant respite from the noise and crowds of the...Read More

  • 3. Edinburgh Castle

    Old Town | Castle/Palace/Chateau

    The crowning glory of the Scottish capital, Edinburgh Castle is popular not only for its pivotal role in Scottish history, but also because...Read More

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  • 4. Edinburgh Gin Distillery

    West End | Winery/Brewery/Distillery

    Whisky may be Scotland's most famous spirit, but gin also has a long and storied history here and as any visit to an Edinburgh bar will tell...Read More

  • 5. Greyfriars Kirkyard

    Old Town | Cemetery

    This sprawling, hillside graveyard, surely one of the most evocative in Europe (particularly at twilight), is a giddy mess of old, tottering...Read More

  • 6. Isle of May

    Island

    This small island in the middle of the Firth of Forth is home to many interesting sights, from the ruins of a medieval priory to a Gothic lighthouse...Read More

  • 7. Jupiter Artland

    Museum/Gallery

    The beautiful grounds of a Jacobean manor house have been transformed by an art-loving couple, Robert and Nicky Wilson, into an impressive sculpture...Read More

  • 8. National Museum of Scotland

    Old Town | Museum/Gallery

    This museum traces the country's fascinating story from the oldest fossils to the most recent popular culture, making it a must-see for first...Read More

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  • 9. Palace of Holyroodhouse

    Old Town | Castle/Palace/Chateau

    The one-time haunt of Mary, Queen of Scots with a long history of gruesome murder, destructive fire, and power-hungry personalities, the Palace...Read More

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  • 10. Rosslyn Chapel

    Religious Building/Site/Shrine

    This chapel has always beckoned curious visitors intrigued by the various legends surrounding its magnificent carvings, but today it pulses...Read More

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  • 11. Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh

    Inverleith | Garden/Arboretum

    Explore Britain's largest rhododendron and azalea gardens at this beautiful 70-acre botanical garden. Founded in 1670 as a physic garden, it...Read More

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  • 12. Scottish National Gallery

    New Town | Museum/Gallery

    Opened to the public in 1859, the Scottish National Gallery presents a wide selection of paintings from the Renaissance to the postimpressionist...Read More

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  • 13. Scottish Storytelling Centre and John Knox House

    Old Town | Arts/Performance Venue

    The stripped-down, low-fi, traditional art of storytelling has had something of a resurgence in Britain over the last decade or so, and there...Read More

  • 14. Tantallon Castle

    Castle/Palace/Chateau

    Travel east along the flat fields from North Berwick, and the imposing silhouette of Tantallon Castle, a substantial, semiruined medieval fortress...Read More

  • 15. The Meadows

    South Side | Park/Playground

    Edinburgh's most popular green space, The Meadows is the first port of call for nearby workers, students, and families when the sun is out ...Read More

  • 16. Water of Leith Walkway

    Leith | Trail/Path

    The Water of Leith, Edinburgh's main river, rises in the Pentland Hills, skirts the edges of the city center, then heads out to the port at...Read More

  • 17. Andrew Carnegie Birthplace Museum

    Museum/Gallery

    Scottish-American industrialist and noted philanthropist Andrew Carnegie was born here in 1835. Don't be misled by the simple exterior of this...Read More

  • 18. Arthur's Seat

    Old Town | Viewpoint/Scenic Overlook

    The high point of 640-acre Holyrood Park is this famously spectacular viewpoint. You'll have seen it before—countless photos have been snapped...Read More

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  • 19. Blackness Castle

    Castle/Palace/Chateau

    Standing like a grounded ship on the very edge of the Forth, this curious 15th-century structure has had a varied career as a strategic fortress...Read More

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  • 20. Calton Hill

    New Town | Viewpoint/Scenic Overlook

    Robert Louis Stevenson's favorite view of his beloved city was from the top of this hill, and it's easy to see why. Located in the heart of...Read More

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