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. 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

  • 2. 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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  • 3. 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

  • 4. 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

  • 5. 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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  • 6. 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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  • 7. 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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  • 8. 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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  • 9. 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

  • 10. 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

  • 11. 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

  • 12. 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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  • 13. 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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  • 14. Camera Obscura and World of Illusions

    Old Town | Observatory/Planetarium

    View Edinburgh like a Victorian at the city's 19th-century camera obscura. Head up Outlook Tower for the headline attraction—an optical instrument...Read More

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  • 15. Canongate

    Old Town | Neighborhood/Street

    This section of the Royal Mile takes its name from the canons who once ran the abbey at Holyrood. Canongate—in Scots, gate means "street"...Read More

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  • 16. Canongate Kirk

    Old Town | Religious Building/Site/Shrine

    This unadorned Church of Scotland building, built in 1688, is best known for its graveyard. It is the final resting place of some notable Scots...Read More

  • 17. Canongate Tolbooth and People's Story Museum

    Old Town | Museum/Gallery

    Nearly every city and town in Scotland once had a tolbooth. Originally a customhouse, where tolls were gathered, it soon came to mean town hall...Read More

  • 18. Castlehill

    Old Town | Neighborhood/Street

    This street, the upper portion of the Royal Mile, was where alleged witches were brought in the 16th century to be burned at the stake. The...Read More

  • 19. Craigmillar Castle

    South Side | Castle/Palace/Chateau

    This handsome medieval ruin, only 3 miles south of the city center, is the archetypal Scottish fortress: forbidding, powerful, and laden with...Read More

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  • 20. Duddingston Village

    Duddingston | Town/Village

    Tucked behind Arthur's Seat, and about a 45-minute walk through Holyrood Park, lies this small community, which still has the feel of a country...Read More

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