Exploring Edinburgh

 ““You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden.”
‭‭Matthew‬ ‭5:14‬ ‭

Bagpipes…kilts…shortbread…lochs…tartan…castles are a few things that come to mind when I think of Scotland!  But there is so much more to offer!  We had never been to Scotland and we loved the beautiful scenery and the warm Scottish people!  Our first stop was Edinburgh, the capital of Scotland!

The Palace of Holyroodhouse is the official residence of the British Monarch in Scotland.  The palace as it appears today was built between 1671 and 1678 and stands at the bottom of the Royal Mile.  The Queen spends one week at Holyrood in summer.

The Historic Apartments at the Palace were once the home of the ill-fated Mary, Queen of Scots.  We toured the State Apartments that are used for state and official entertaining and then climbed a steep spiral staircase to view the 16th century Historic Apartments.  Photography was not allowed inside the palace.

Holyrood Abbey has been ruined since the 18th century.  The remaining walls lie adjacent to the palace.  The surviving medieval nave was built around 1230.

An exterior view of the Abbey’s south wall!

The oldest part built before 1200 is the north wall with its tall single-lancet windows with intersecting arcading below.

Beautiful gardens surrounded the Palace and the Abbey.  Doesn’t it make you wonder what the everyday living was like for those who lived in these places long ago?! 

Walking down the Royal Mile in the Old Town with Edinburgh Castle at the top and Holyroodhouse at the bottom of the 1.5 miles!

The bagpiper didn’t offer a tip to have his picture made with me!

Tourists line the Royal Mile with its shops, pubs, and  interesting sites!

Red doors will always get my attention!

Butch can’t resist a photo opp of street performers!

The hanging flower baskets were everywhere and with the wet climate they were thriving!

 Tartan clad bagpiper

The Tron Kirk is a familiar landmark on the Royal Mile. It is a former principal parish church built in the 1600’s and closed as a church in 1952.

St. Giles Cathedral dates from the late 14th century.  Its distinctive crown steeple is a prominent feature of the Edinburgh skyline.  John Knox was chosen minister in 1559. 

At the top of the Royal Mile sits Edinburgh Castle!  A national treasure, the castle was built over centuries beginning in 1130.  This intriguing castle is where Mary, Queen of Scots gave birth in 1566 to the future King James I of England.  The Scottish Crown Jewels are housed in the 15th century Old Royal Palace, which we found fascinating.  No pictures were allowed of the Crown Jewels.

In what we might call an inner courtyard, a number of the castles main structures were open to the public. This is the Scottish War Memorial. The Great Hall and the entrance to view the Crown Jewels are also nearby.

An example of the fortification at the castle. Being built high on a hill also seems to have been strategic in being able to defend castles. Edinburgh Castle is high on a volcanic rocky crag.

The interior of St. Margaret’s Chapel in Edinburgh Castle is the oldest surviving building in Edinburgh, Scotland.  It was constructed in the 12th century.

One of the five stained glass windows that were made in 1922.  This one illustrates William Wallace, a national hero and Scottish knight who fought and died to free Scotland from English rule.  A well-known account of Wallace’e life is presented in the Film “Brave Heart”.

The Great Hall was completed in 1511 and stands at the heart of the castle.  Tourists completely filled the 94 foot length of the hall, so we missed an opportunity for a great photo!

Some of the items on display in the Great Hall. I’m wondering if walking around in one of these “suits” all day would eliminate the need for a gym membership.

 The Governors House was completed in 1817, and  is all that remains of the Calton Gaol, once the largest prison in Scotland. This house was used by Commissioners who “governed” the prison. The Gaol closed in 1927 and all was demolished in 1937 with the exception of this house.

Thank you for walking the Royal Mile with us!

Linking with Pieced PastimesSilver Pennies, Life on Lakeshore DriveThoughts From Alice, Coastal Charm, My Uncommon Slice of SuburbiaThe Dedicated HouseDwellings-Heart of Your HomeSavvy Southern Style, Ivy and Elephants, French Country Cottage, From My Front Porch To Yours, Stone Gable, Confessions of a Plate Addict, Worthing CourtBetween Naps on the Porch, Cedar Hill Farmhouse, A Stroll Thru Life, The Charm of Home, Cornerstone ConfessionsA Delightsome Life, Imparting GracePosed PerfectionKatherines Corner, Rooted In Thyme, Share Your Cup, The Enchanting Rose, Alabama Women Bloggers, 21 Rosemary Lane, Northern Nesting, Cozy Little House, Rattlebridge Farm, Karens Up On The Hill, My Romantic Home



  1. Great tour highlights, Pam, and a place I’d like to go. The history of those buildings, centuries old, will never cease to amaze me. As a collector of antique beaded handbags, I have a few that memorialize the great castles of Europe in their designs. Several of my fellow collectors have trekked to those castles, and one has even written a book of the patterns, side-by-side with the original castle inspiration. I love the chapel, and I bet the Crown Jewels were a sight to behold. Thanks for sharing.

    • Rita, thank you so much for traveling to Edinburgh with us! It really is a fascinating place! Your collection of beaded handbags I know is beautiful! Wishing you a wonderful Saturday!

      If you have gotten a reply from me, I apologize. I lost my comments!

  2. Such a beautiful city – I love it Pam and loved this tour with you!! So long since we’ve been there, makes me think now we should go back again soon – thank you for helping prompt this!!

    • Pam Richardson says:

      Joy, so glad you followed along with us to Edinburgh! It truly is a lovely place with beautiful architecture, good food, and friendly people! Hope you can go back soon!

  3. Kim says:

    Thanks for sharing your travels with us, Pam. You and Butch are blessed to be able to go to all these neat places and learn about them…see them first-hand. I enjoy traveling “with you”. God’s blessings to you this week, my friend!

  4. i was so charmed by edinburgh, the castle is truly majestic atop the street like that. i bought a piece of silver jewelry from my graduation trip/tour (my souvenir of choice if i love a place) but i haven’t worn it in ages. you are reminding me to bring it back out! great photos.

    • Pam Richardson says:

      Thanks so much! Edinburgh is truly beautiful with so much to offer! Wishing you a wonderful rest of the week! Blessings

  5. Nancy says:

    We got to see all these wonderful places in 2014 on our tour of the British Isles for our 50th anniversary. Thanks for the reminders of that memory. Your pictures are much better than ours!!!

    • Pam Richardson says:

      Nancy, sounds like your trip may have been similar to ours! We loved it and found it all very interesting! Have a lovely week!

    • Pam Richardson says:

      Angelina, I can’t imagine living then, either! Edinburgh was a beautiful city with much to offer! Thanks and have a lovely week’

  6. dolores says:

    Muy hermoso reportaje!!
    Me sonrío cuando te preguntas cómo sería la vida dentro de esos enormes castillo…Yo creo que no muy agradable para nosotros los habitantes de este mundo de confort. En principio debía hacer mucho frío por eso vestían esos ropajese tan pesados, y otro aspecto que me horroriza es tener que subir tantas escaleras de peldaños muy altos, de piedra dura…Uffff!!!! que horror. jajajajaja
    Escocia no la conozco, ya ves…tan cerca que lo tenemos, pero espero poder visitarla, la vida es larga y hay tiempo para todo.
    Gracias por compartir

    Very beautiful story !!
    I smile when you wonder what life would be within these huge castle … I think not very nice to us the inhabitants of a world of comfort. In principle should be very cold so they wore those ropajese so heavy, and another aspect that horrifies me is having to climb many stairs very high steps, hard stone … Uffff !!!! How awful. hahaha
    Scotland do not know, you see … we have it so close, but I hope to visit, life is long and there is time for everything.
    Thanks for sharing

    • Pam Richardson says:

      Hola, Delores! Gracias por sus comentarios graciosos usted! Escocia es un país muy bonito, con castillos, catedrales, buena comida y gente amable! No puedo imaginar la vida en aquellos días de castillos! Yo sé que habría sido frío y húmedo y las escaleras empinadas habría sido difícil de maniobrar para las personas mayores! tener una semana maravillosa! bendiciones, mi amigo

      Hello,Delores! Thank you for your gracious comments! Scotland is a very beautiful country with castles, cathedrals, great food, and friendly people! I cannot imagine life back in those days of castles! I know they would have been cold and damp and the steep stairs would have been difficult to maneuver for older people! Have a lovely week! Blessings, my friend

    • Pam Richardson says:

      Thanks for coming over from Jann’s party! I hope you can make it to Scotland and Ireland…so beautiful! Have a lovely week, Rebecca and please visit again!

  7. Rachel says:

    Thank you so much for posting such beautiful pictures of the homeland that I miss so very much. Edinburgh is such a beautiful city, steeped in culture and art. August is the best month to visit, as the festival is on and so much to see and do. I wish I could just jump into the pictures and wander through the city. Thank you.

    • Pam Richardson says:

      Rachel, your homeland is beautiful! We loved Scotland and Edinburgh! So many fascinating places and not enough time to see it all! Thanks for coming along!

  8. When I saw he link about Edinburgh I couldn’t resist popping over from the Saturday Sparks LP. My mum and dad live not too far from Edinburgh, it’s such a great city.

    You have some fabulous photos and told me quite a few facts I didn’t know – thanks

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