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More Top Hotels Edinburgh
National Gallery of Scotland
The National Gallery of Scotland is located on the Mound in Edinburgh which separates the two parts of Princess Street Gardens. It is a large neoclassical building which was first opened to the public in 1859. It houses a large collection of European and Scottish art from early Renaissance to the late 19th century. Artwork in the Gallery is by many famous artists including Raphael, El Greco, Rubens, Titian, Velázquez, Vermeer, Rembrandt, Turner and the Impressionists. Many Scottish artists are also exhibited these include Ramsay, Raeburn. Wilkie and McTaggart. Facilities at the Gallery include Education services, gift shop, disabled access and an outdoor café in the Summer. Opening times are Monday to Saturday 10am-5pm and Sunday 12-5pm. There are extended opening hours during the Edinburgh Festival and it is closed 25 and 26 December. Admission is free but some special exhibitions may have a charge.
Princes Street Gardens
Princes Street Gardens is located in the heart of Edinburgh city centre and runs down the south side of Princes Street. It was originally a loch called the Nor Loch which was a dumping ground for all the sewage from the Old Town. This was drained and the gardens were created in 1820. They are divided into the East and West Gardens separated by the Mound. In the West Gardens is the Ross Fountain, the Floral Clock and the Ross Band Stand where many summer concerts are held and also holds the Hogmanay celebrations. The East Gardens has the Scott Monument at the entrance to the Gardens and also the National Gallery of Scotland and the Royal Scottish Academy are located there. In the summer it is a popular place to sit and enjoy the view of Edinburgh Castle. In winter it is transformed to a winter wonderland with an ice rink. There is also a German Christmas Market and the Edinburgh Wheel. The West gardens become Santa’s Reindeer Garden with trees festooned with lights and horse and carriage rides.
Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh
The Royal Botanic Garden was first founded in 1670 near Holyrood Palace, it was then moved in 1763 to Leith and then in 1820 it moved to its present location in Inverleith, just a mile from Edinburgh city centre. It covers an area of 70 acres and has almost 34,000 species of plants on view. There are several different glasshouses including the Palm house, the Tropical house, the Fern house, the Temperate House , the Arid House and the Montane tropical house Other interesting collections include the Peat Walls, the Queen Mother’s memorial garden, the Rock Garden ,the Scottish Heath Garden and the Woodland Garden. There is also an aquarium with 15 tanks showing aquatic plants. Admission to the gardens are free but there is a small charge to visit the glasshouses. Opening times are November & February: 10.00am - 4.00pm. March & October: 10.00am - 6.00pm. April to September: 10.00am - 7.00pm. The Gardens are closed on Christmas Day and New Years Day.
The Edinburgh Military Tattoo is a pageant held annually over three weeks in August. The display takes place on the Esplanade of Edinburgh Castle and is part of the wider Edinburgh festival which runs at the same time. First established in 1950, the show has grown to become a major event: tickets are a sell-out and it is televised internationally. The show is a military presentation in which massed piped bands and precision marching are a major part, but also includes other displays such as dancers, gymnasts, singers and motorbikes. Each year one of the arms of the forces takes the lead role. A consistent feature since it began is the lone piper high on the castle battlements picked out by a spotlight while all else is in darkness. In recent years the piper has played on the top of the Scottish National War Memorial. The participants are not always Scottish or even from the UK. The first overseas regiment took part in 1952 and since then more than 30 countries have been represented. There is a nightly performance Monday to Friday and two on Saturday. It is the Tattoo’s boast that no show has ever been cancelled because of the weather.
The Scott Monument in Edinburgh was built to commemorate Sir Walter Scott who died on 21st September 1832. George Miekle Kemp won a competition to design it and construction started in 1838. It stands 200 ft. 6in high (61 meters) and 55ft.(16 meters) square at the base. To reach the highest gallery you have to climb 287 steps. It is made of Binnie stone , throughout the structure there are niches, 64 in all which hold statuettes each depicting a character from the works of Scott. The statue itself was designed and built by John Steell and is made of Carrara marble, it is more than double life-size. The last stone was laid in 1844 and it was officially inaugurated on 15th August 1846. It is located on Princes street and is open Monday to Friday 9am till 6pm and 10am to 6pm on Sundays during the summer. In winter it closes at 3pm. Admission costs £3 (4 Euros).
Howies One Alva Street
Established in 2005 and named after the founder and the street it is located in the Howies One Alva Street is part of a Scottish restaurant group. The restaurant is just a minute's walk from Princes Street. The restaurant can seat up to 70 guests in the dining area which is naturaly divided in to 3 areas. These can be used for private functions. As well as the usual menu, lunch time specials and 45 minute lunches are available. All major credit cards available Open from 12pm - 2.30pm and 5:30pm - 10pm Monday to Friday. Saturday and Sunday 12pm - 3.00pm and 5:30pm - 10pm.