Top 4 Tourist Attractions You Must Explore in Edinburgh
During your stay in Morningside you’d certainly want to visit the most popular places nearby. You can take one of the Lothian buses to get to Edinburgh. Once you’re in the Scottish capital, you’ll have many tourist attractions worth exploring. While getting around in Edinburgh, you’ll get a glimpse of the city’s past.
In the 18th-century New Town, you’ll get to witness the elegant Georgian neighborhoods. When you get to the Old Town, you’ll see hidden passageways, narrow winding lanes, and steep staircases. Besides these two historical places, you’ll get to witness many other attractions in Edinburgh.
1. National Monument of Scotland
The National Monument of Scotland is dedicated to the country’s soldiers and sailors who died in the Napoleonic Wars. It is located on Calton Hill, which offers a panoramic view of the entire Edinburgh city. This monument modeled on the Parthenon of Athens dominates the summit of Calton Hill.
It was designed by the architects William Henry Playfair and Charles Robert Cockerell. Construction of the monument began in 1826, but was left unfinished in 1829 due to lack of funds. This led to several nicknames being given to it, such as ‘Edinburgh’s Disgrace’ and ‘Scotland’s Folly’.
Several attempts were made in the following years to complete it, but were unsuccessful. The monument was classified as Category A building in 1966 and underwent repairs in 2008.
2. Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh
Home to over 13,000 different plant species, this is the second oldest garden of its kind in the UK. The Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh (RBGE) was founded in 1670 and is spread over 70 acres. While exploring this garden you’ll come across some rare giant trees. They were brought from China, the Himalayas, and North America.
A herbarium in this botanic garden has a collection of more than three million specimens. Other highlights of this garden include the woodland garden. It has colorful azaleas, camellias, and tropical water plants among the other offerings. If you visit this botanic garden during Christmas, you’ll get to witness some spectacular displays of lights.
3. National Museum of Scotland
One of the most popular attractions of the country, the National Museum of Scotland was opened in 2011. Visiting this museum is one of the best things you can do for free in the Scottish capital. It is visited by more than two million individuals annually. The collections of this museum includes the ones from many of Edinburgh’s older museums.
Among the highlights are the medieval artifacts, archaeological collections and a variety of displays. Over 8,000 artifacts are displayed in the museum’s 16 galleries. Upon browsing these galleries, you’ll come across the world’s first cloned mammal known as Dolly the sheep. There are two restaurants in this museum and you can also benefit from its guided tours.
4. Holyrood Palace
Also known as ‘Palace of Holyroodhouse’ or simply ‘Holyroodhouse’, this palace is the British monarch’s official residence in Scotland. It is located at the bottom of the Royal Mile. It was constructed in 1678 and has been the center of Scottish history ever since. The Queen spends a week at this palace every summer.
Portraits of Scottish kings have been displayed in The Great Gallery. As a part of the Golden Jubilee celebrations, The Queen’s Gallery was opened in 2002. If you’re travelling with your family, allow your kids to put on the costumes in the Family Room.