The lilac blossoms at their peak together with their smaller friends the bluebells, had the most glorious views across Edinburgh and the Firth of Forth today from the top of Calton Hill. That’s the hill where the old Observatory sits, where the one o’clock cannon ball drops on its tower, as closely in tandem with the sound of cannon. There you will find Edinburgh’s Folly – pardon me, today that should read The National Monument – though in its time it was also known as Edinburgh’s madness. The twelve Grecian columns, (derivative of the Parthenon) is as far as it got; the money ran out. It is though, more seriously, a war memorial of its time.

Who needs aerial views of Edinburgh when there are such glorious vistas over the rooftops of the old and new parts of the city as far as the eye can see. Even the newer constructs (bar one) are sympathetic to the whole. A cairn with a brazier atop, a more recent addition to this World Heritage Site, has already absorbed the character of its surroundings, and is well worth pausing at to study the various discreet information plaques upon and around it.

The public park, for that is what Calton Hill is, was being enjoyed respectfully by all age groups, some taking a rest on the grass. There was a quiet mix of many different languages being spoken. A group of English steam train buffs were studying the information boards. Matchstick men and women were seen to be climbing the majestic Salisbury Crags, it was the right kind of day for it.



  1. That sounds like a terrific day….I’ve only just passed through Edinburgh… coach; stopping over for Lunch. We hope to get up there again soon! 😉

  2. It was a great visit and the next day like this one, when we are in a position to do so, will include another visit to ‘the hill’.

    A lot of people only pass through many places not knowing how worthy they are of a bit of time, if it can be arranged.

    Apropos of time, I met a young Libyan student last year at the Edinburgh bus station, who had taken the cheapest bus from the City from Newcastle, where she was studying, then a coach to Inverness. We spoke to her on her return leg of her 24 hour trip. She was under the impression Scotland stopped at the ‘big bridge’ in Inverness. Following some further conversation, she realised that a programme she had watched in Libya had shown countryside and islands much farther on. At least she’d tried. The young lady was delightful.

  3. We were on a Coach Tour to the Western Highlands…stayed at Oban….then returned via Stirling and Edinburgh, to the South here….overnighting at the Holiday Inn just outside Newcastle….Much too little time in ‘Eddy’….;)

  4. Most trips focus on The Western Highlands…they’re do-able in quick trip terms, within a short time frame.

    Stirling is another interesting stop for a day or maybe two, taking in the castle, the walks around it, Wallace Monument and so on. Edinburgh is probably deserving of three days as a minimum; there’s plenty to visit even when the weather is not at its best.

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