Some nature in the heart of Edinburgh; Arthur’s Seat. It’s in Holyrood Park, near Holyrood Palace, which is the Queen’s official residence in Scotland. It’s an ancient volcano about 250m above sea level. So, it’s not a long walk but it’s a big steep hill basically. Although there were small children and mad ladies in flip flops heading up there, I was struggling slightly. I am quite unfit these days though, and the torrential rain had finally stopped and the hot sun came out which didn’t actually help.
On our first approach we had the choice of a long more gentle slope or the steep shorter one, we chose the horrid one to go up and the gentle one to come down on. There were some lovely views over Edinburgh, and the sea as we went up. And lots of tourists, as was the general theme of Edinburgh while we were there. In fact, we could see Arthur’s Seat from pretty much everywhere whilst we walked around Edinburgh all week and there were always little figures visible on the top.
I suppose a visit to Edinburgh would be incomplete without a visit to The Castle, unfortunately everyone else in Edinburgh thought that too! It opens at 9:30am and we arrived at 9:40am and still had to queue for 25 minutes to get in. And the seas of people just kept on growing as we walked around. And the number of people made it hard to see things properly, but then it’s a bit rich of me to complain when I was one of those people!
It was also delightful rainy in that Scottish way when we were there, so that was nice! The other excellent addition that really enhanced our experience of the Castle was the ‘Esplanade’. This is a huge set of tacky, bright blue, plastic seats for military tattoos (not the inky ones, these are performances by military bands that you can pay up to £74 for).
There weren’t as many indoor bits that were opened up as I was expecting, which was a shame given the rain and number of people. They do actually still have a military presence in the buildings so obviously you can’t just wander in to the barracks. But for £17 I wanted more from my visit. There was a guided tour you could take but we decided just to wander which was perhaps a mistake given how little info there was on everything.