Sunday 12 May 2013

Castle #2

Last Monday, May bank holiday, we visited our second castle using our Historic Scotland membership. It involved a train trip to the capital which was N's first time on a "proper train, as opposed to a tourist steam train.

  Off uphill from the station.

 Along the Royal Mile.

A masked Adam Smith.

The heart of Midlothian, captured without spittle.

 "Visitors will often notice people spitting on the Heart. A tolbooth (prison) stood on the site, where executions used to take place. The heart marks its doorway: the point of public execution. Some people spit on the Heart. Although it now said to be done for good luck, it was originally done as a sign of disdain for the former prison. The spot lay directly outside the prison entrance, so the custom may have been begun by debtors on their release."

Encountering Bonnie Prince Charlie

Approaching the castle, Edinburgh castle. It was busy, as you'd expect on a bank holiday. I'm sure it gets a lot busier than this in August, we won't be visiting then! After negotiating the confusing entry queues and trying not to get too annoyed by the rather rude girl selling tickets, we're in...

To be honest, for us the best thing about the castle was the fact that the views from it are pretty spectacular. Here we're looking over to Princes Street.

The view over the castle forecourt to Arthur's Seat.

Past the canon is Calton Hill.

Drain pipe detail. All was very spruce and neat and tidy, and a little lacking in atmosphere somehow. Just before this point we'd become inextricably entwined with the queue to see the crown jewels, if you're not a fan of enclosed spaces you'll probably want to skip this part - imagine an Ikea-like warren but with walls, full of people, and no going back once you're in there!

Most people passing the little orange trees checked to see if they were real, as did we. They're not.

 Time to go!

Scrumptious icecreams from the van outside. Hubby had one too, but he was too busy scoffing his for a photo.

The castle in the distance past the beautiful tulips.


We stayed to have tea at Pizza Express - mmm! The home on one of the slow trains, the kids were late to bed that night. Now, which castle shall we visit next...


Anonymous said...

What a lovely post, I have never been to Edinburgh, but next week I am going to Fort William to ride the Jacobite! I am so excited, as you might imagine.

Wasn't it a little chilly for ice creams?

Ladybird Diaries said...

Great post, I love Edinburgh too and as you know we were there last weekend too! Looks like you all had a great time and those ice creams look fab.
M x

forgetmenotsblue said...

Great photos would love to visit Edinburgh. The views from the castle look wonderful. :)

susie said...

What an instructive journey :)
Beautiful photos !
Lovely greetings ..

Meredith said...

What a beautiful castle, so glad you are getting to see these treasures and that you are introducing them to your children.

Chaos, Kids, Crochet and Cake said...

Historic Scotland passes are the best! We spent many happy days exploring as many castles as we could, mostly with the boys dressed as knights.
Loved your pics, made me a little homesick, especially the views of Fife from the castle. But I'll be there myself in 3 weeks time! This time next week I'll be on a train to Sydney to fly to Glasgow. 2 weeks in Largs with time off for good behaviour with my pals in the East!
Hope the weather will be a bit warmer...!
Sandra x

Diane said...

What lovely photographs. Ive only been to Edinburgh once and really enjoyed it. Time to schedule in a return visit I think. xx

Anonymous said...

Love Edinburgh! We want to go back up for a weekend we were up there a few years ago for a gathering. It was great! Nice pictures:)

Gillian Roe said...

What a perfect day trip for a bank holiday. We spent a lovely weekend in Edinburgh years ago and I'd love to go back there with the kids. x

Lyn said...

We went to Edinburgh for the last night of our honeymoon and loved it. Must go again!

Neighborhood Watch said...

Just stopping by to say hey! Are those chocolate sticks in the ice cream?
Beautiful pictures as usual here. Looks like a fun day out.

Mrs. Micawber said...

What a great post - Edinburgh looks so beautiful (these parts of it at least). My nephew was there a few years ago and loved it.

A looks very stylish in her red coat. :)

* said...

I too would have been swayed by the's amazing to see a city from that high up....your description of the queue makes me feel a bit shifty...not for me I think.

I do love a good ice-cream, what could be better.

Wow, your last pic is like a Georgia O'Keeffe....fab!

Unknown said...

beautiful, beautiful! I love the views, as well as the ice cream. xo


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