Sunday, 30 June 2013

Edinburgh

Fantastic city, Edinburgh. Great at any time of year, perhaps less so when it's cold & wet (but it can be like that any time of year...). Known as the "Athens of the North" Edinburgh has some scenic and historic buildings and open spaces, art galleries and museums, extensive botanic gardens, the sea nearby, the Royal Yacht Britannia (now a museum) and the Firth of Forth with the famous railway bridge. The city gets clogged with visitors during the Festival in August, where there are street performers, live events kicking off all over the centre and a vibrant atmosphere throughout.

I doubt if the residents like this so much, and those who have read the Inspector Rebus crime novels by Ian Rankin will know that there's a darker side to Edinburgh beneath the touristy glitz.

 What's so attractive about the city is that it's a manageable size and the main central attractions can be walked around and enjoyed. Here is a taster of the city sights.
Edinburgh Castle viewed from Bruntsfield Links - one of the large open spaces
The famous Forth Railway Bridge
Street theatre at Festival time - "Now young man, will you just step inside this suitcase?"
A friendly piper - a member of the police pipe band performing at the Festival
The Queen's chintzy 1950's sitting room on board Britannia
View of the city and Princes Street from Calton Hill - in the snow

Lastly, Princes Street, Edinburgh at sunset. The time of year was late autumn - probably November with the festive season fast approaching. Fairground equipment, with helter-skelter and big wheel, was already set up around the Wallace memorial in Princes Street Gardens. It was cold (what else but?) and the sight of the golden-streaked sky with the Wallace memorial sihouetted against it made me pause and take this photo.



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