The impressive volcanic hill located right in the centre of Edinburgh is one of the Masterpieces of the Old Town. Gathering History, heritage and ghost stories, Castle Hill also hosts the best attractions of the city.
We have recently been invited to visit what makes Edinburgh Old Town so special. From Edinburgh Castle to The Scotch Whisky Experience and Camera Obscura, we have quite a lot to share with you! Put your trainers on and let’s get started.
We can’t talk about Castle Hill without mentioning its superstar, the Castle.
This impressive fortress dominating the Edinburgh skyline started to be edified during the early Middle Ages and has known a lot of changes throughout the centuries. Parts of the current building date from the 12th century, others from the 15th century and finally some from after the First World War. Quite a lot of history!
But what makes a visit at the Edinburgh Castle a great one is the fact that you can dive in every single part of its buildings, from the spooky prisons to the incredible Crown Jewels house and the National War Museum. What’s more, every day, an officer activates the cannon from the Esplanade, and this is something we highly recommend you see - Prepare your ears though.
To sum up, Edinburgh Castle should definitely be a part of your program. Beware! The ticket office is always very busy, we recommend you book your tickets in advance to avoid a massive queue!
Where? Castlehill Edinburgh EH1 2 NG
£17 Adult, £10.20 Children, £13.60 Concession
More information: https://www.edinburghcastle.gov.uk/
One of our best experiences on Royal Mile and for many reasons. First, this is an amazing venue! You start your journey with the Barrel Ride - basically you are sitting in a barrel and navigate through a distillery to discover the whisky making process.
After your ride, you enter in a video room where you’ll have the chance to discover Scotland and its different whisky regions thanks to a superb panoramic movie and aroma card. This is quite a surprise.
Then, you will learn the history and alchemy of blending in the Sample Room - your good work will be rewarded with a glass of whisky chosen according to your preferences.
And last, but definitely not least, walk through the World’s Largest Collection of Scotch Whisky, an amazing library of whisky bottles (approximately 300,000) beautifully displayed. You feel quite small in there - and thirsty too!
You will finish up your journey in the Scotch Whisky Shop in which you can buy your favorite blend among 450 other bottles.
Available in more than 18 languages, interactive and playful, this is the chance to discover the world of Scotland’s whisky thanks to experts and tailored experience. Beware of ghostly apparition though…
Where? 354 Castlehill, The Royal Mile, Edinburgh EH1 2NE
More information: https://www.scotchwhiskyexperience.co.uk/
When you walk on Castle Hill and pass besides the entrance of Camera Obscura, you don’t really know what to expect. You see deforming mirrors and this tickle your interest but you always wonder “what’s inside that tower?” We found out the answer for you, and it is huge.
Established in 1835, Camera Obscura is a fascinating and amusing way to discover Edinburgh and its history with unique and intriguing experiences. The 6 floor tower offers plenty of optical illusions, holograms and other interactive exhibits alongside with a 360-degree views from the roof terrace where you can admire the city thanks to telescopes.
Eye spy Edinburgh with the 19th century viewcam, get lost in the mirror maze, and scare yourself with interactive experiences. It is fun, fascinating and often challenging, but you will have such a good time in there, believe us, we thought we were kids again.
Where? Castlehill, The Royal Mile, Edinburgh EH1 2ND
£15 Adults, £11 Children, £13 Concession
More information: http://www.camera-obscura.co.uk/
From the outside it looks like a tiny touristic shop full of souvenirs. But it’s actually more than that. Occupying the old Castle Hill reservoir, The Tartan Weaving Mill is surprisingly monumental from the inside whether it is by its size or its millions of products. But more importantly, the shop reveals the whole process involved in tartan production, from shearing sheep to the actual kilt.
Thanks to see through glasses, you will be able to discover the rustic machines weaving the fibres that will become soon fashion items including scarves, throw and cardigans. It is also quite fascinating to learn about the different colours used in the different kilt confections, colours related to the different clans living in Scotland.
An interesting journey through Scotland’s most iconic fashion item.
Where? 555 Castlehill, Edinburgh EH1 2 ND
More information: http://www.royal-mile.com/interest/tartanweavingmill.html
Built in 1845 to house the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, what is known today as The Hub, has surprisingly never been consecrated as a Church. Instead, it has always been considered as a congregation place. Even today, and thanks to its spectacular proportions, The Hub can host conferences, weddings and other gala dinners.
But The Hub is also a great coffee shop as well as a good tourist information office, where you can buy your tickets for any kind of events throughout the year.
It is clearly worth a visit, just to check the impressive architecture combining contemporary design and Victorian elements.
Where? Castlehill Edinburgh EH1 2NE
More information: http://www.thehub-edinburgh.com/
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