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The story of a city is told by its landmarks, and Edinburgh has quite a story to tell. From Edinburgh Castle to the Scottish Parliament, each monument and building in the capital is a milestone in its long and chequered history.
Edinburgh’s sense of history is palpable, emanating from its every winding nook and stonework crevice. The city’s landmarks chart its evolution from a Medieval settlement to a masterclass in Georgian architecture and town planning. Here are the 10 most noteworthy.
Edinburgh is a city of two distinct halves: the Medieval Old Town and the Georgian New Town. Both UNESCO World Heritage sites, the latter was initially mapped out by city planner James Craig in the 1700s, with architect Robert Adam designing many of its most distinguished buildings. And so he did with 6 Charlotte Square, now the official residence of Scotland’s first minister. On the square’s north side, Bute House stands out due to its grand facade and central front door – unique features lacking in the rest of the buildings on the square. Also in the square is the preserved Georgian House, which houses a beautiful array of paintings by acclaimed Scottish artists, including Sir Henry Raeburn.
Strolling the cobble setts of this village within a city, you would scarcely know you were right in the centre of Edinburgh at all. The Dean Village is something of a green oasis, with the cascading Water of Leith flowing through its centre. The hamlet, boasted several important grain mills, is nearly 800 years old, but its most striking building is Well Court. Recently renovated, it was built in 1886 as model housing for mill workers and their families. Its distinctive red sandstone structures, including a clock tower and courtyard, now form the centrepiece of a tranquil refuge for local residents. The area is also home to the towering Dean Bridge and the Neoclassical Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art.
This is an updated version of a story written by Tori Chalmers.