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Edinburgh bezienswaardigheden

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Royal Mile
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91 Tours en activiteiten

De Royal Mile, in werkelijkheid iets langer dan een mijl, loopt van Edinburgh Castle tot Holyrood Palace. Het vormt het centrum van de Old Town van Edinburgh. De Royal Mile bestaat vooral uit graniet, waardoor een donkere Gothic uitstraling is ontstaan en er staan grote gebouwen, zoals banken, kerken en gerechtsgebouwen.

De straat werd voor het eerst in de 12de eeuw ingericht, toen nog onder de naam Via Regis (de straat van de koning). Er zijn maar weinig doorgaande wegen, die een traject volgen dat in de ijstijd door kruiend ijs is ontstaan!

Hoewel het tegenwoordig een toeristische trekpleister is, met een topdrukte tijdens het Edinburgh Festival en het hele jaar door een aanbod van ruitstoffen en spritskoekjes, is toch nog veel van de oude weelde bewaard gebleven.

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Edinburgh Old Town
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91 Tours en activiteiten

Old Town is het sfeervolle historische centrum van Edinburgh. Sinds 1995 staat dit stadshart op de Werelderfgoedlijst van UNESCO. Hier vind je veel van de meest populaire attracties van Edinburgh. De Old Town is bekend van de centrale boulevard. Die bestaat uit vier aaneengesloten straten onder de naam Royal Mile. De boulevard loopt van het Edinburgh Castle op de heuvel tot het Koninklijk Paleis van Holyrood.

Langs die Royal Mile staan veel van de bekendste gebouwen van de stad. Tussen de souvenirwinkels, pubs en cafés vind je de 12de-eeuwse St. Giles Cathedral, het Nationaal Museum van Schotland, het John Knox house en de ondergrondse straten van Mary King's Close. Het laatste deel van de Royal Mile, Canongate, is het meest afwisselende deel van de route. Daar vind je het 16de-eeuwse Canongate Tollbooth en Canongate Kirk, het moderne complex van het Schotse Parlement en het aparte gebouw van Our Dynamic Earth.

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Royal Yacht Britannia (HMY Britannia)
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110
9 Tours en activiteiten

The Royal Yacht Britannia hit the seas in 1953, and took the British royal family around the world from then until 1997, when she was decommissioned. She's the 83rd royal yacht – the first belonged to Charles II in the 1600s.

Few yachts can boast such an illustrious career as the Royal Yacht Britannia, having sailed over a million miles and transported the British Royal Family on hundreds of official visits. Since retiring from service, the luxurious vessel has been permanently docked in Edinburgh’s historic Leith port, beside the Ocean Terminal shopping center, and serves as a museum of royal life at sea, as well as hosting elite events in its grand dining hall.

Exploring the regal yacht offers a unique insight into the life and travels of the Royal Family and you’ll be in good company if you choose to step on board – Sir Winston Churchill, Nelson Mandela and Rajiv Gandhi are among the many iconic figures that have been welcomed below deck.

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St. Giles Cathedral
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61 Tours en activiteiten

With its famous crown spire towering over the Royal Mile in Edinburgh’s Old Town and a history stretching over 1,000 years, St Giles Cathedral is one of the city’s most acclaimed religious buildings. Founded in the 1120s, the Cathedral has a long and illustrious history at the center of Scottish Catholic worship. From being ransacked and burned by English troops under King Richard II to hosting John Knox’s famous Reformation sermon in 1559 (a statue in Knox’s honor now stands in the nave), St Giles has seen it all.

Today, most of the cathedral’s Gothic structure dates back to the 19th century with highlights including the exquisite stained glass windows, some of the finest in Scotland and the legendary Thistle Chapel, once home to the Knights of the Order of the Thistle. As well as holding regular services, St Giles’ Cathedral is also renowned for its choral and organ recitals held on its grand Rieger organ, with many free musical events throughout the year.

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Palace of Holyroodhouse
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66 Tours en activiteiten

Het Paleis van Holyrood House, vaak gewoon Holyrood Palace genoemd, staat aan de andere kant van de bij Edinburgh Castle beginnende Royal Mile. Beide gebouwen spelen een belangrijke rol in de geschiedenis van Schotland.

Het klooster op het terrein werd gesticht in 1128 en het paleis zelf is gebouwd in barokstijl. Tegenwoordig is het de Schotse residentie van Koningin Elizabeth II, maar het is waarschijnlijk bekender vanwege een andere koninklijke persoonlijkheid, namelijk Mary, Koningin der Schotten. Zij trouwde er, woonde er en was er getuige van de moord op haar secretaris.

Zoals te verwachten, zijn de ruimten overdadig ingericht met onder andere een topcollectie tapijten en schilderijen. Dwaal door de tuinen en voel je voor even koning of koningin.

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Arthur's Seat
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38 Tours en activiteiten

Along with Calton Hill and Castle Rock, Arthur's Seat forms part of the ridge of cold volcanoes that give such drama to the Edinburgh skyline. The mountain sits in Holyrood Park, 650 acres (260 hectares) of wild parkland just a short walk from the Royal Mile. So you can be shopping for Argyle socks one moment and roaming around lochs and moorland the next! From some angles, the mini-mountain resembles a sleeping lion. It’s perhaps seen at its best in the mellow light of sunset.

Arthur's Seat is no Everest, and if you want to climb it there are several easy ascents. If you're reasonably fit and keep striding you could make it in half an hour, but even if you're less fit or want to gaze at the scenery, an hour should take you to the top. Be careful on rainy days when the rocks are slippery.

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Princes Street
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13 Tours en activiteiten

Het prachtige Princes Street met een enorme lengte, tuinen, winkelaanbod en prachtige uitzichten, is de centrale verkeersader van Edinburgh en een van de grootste van Europa. Dit is ook het middelpunt van het wereldberoemde Hogmanay (Nieuwjaarsfeest), dat met een groot straatfeest gevierd wordt. Als u net in Edinburgh bent aangekomen is een wandeling de beste manier om u te oriënteren.

Waarom Princes Street? Omdat het genoemd is naar twee prinsen, namelijk de zonen van koning George III. De straat werd aangelegd bij de bouw van de New Town in de 18de eeuw. Het meer Nor Loch ooit bedoeld als verdediging van het kasteel werd drooggelegd om de tuinen te kunnen aanleggen.

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Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh
7 Tours en activiteiten

The Royal Botanic Garden of Edinburgh is one of the most stunning - and one of the oldest - botanic gardens on earth. It was originally planted as a medicinal garden near Holyrood Palace in 1670 (only Oxford's gardens predate it in the British Isles). It fetched up in its present location, about a mile out of the city, in the 19th century.

Today the Royal Botanic Garden spreads over 70 acres with splendid views of the city. It has the largest collection of wild-origin Chinese plants outside of China. You’ll also find a Scottish heath garden planted with highlands specimens, a rock garden bursting with over 500 Alpine plants and a herbaceous border backed by a 100-year-old beech hedge.

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Gladstone’s Land
8 Tours en activiteiten

Tucked away between the many attractions of Edinburgh’s Royal Mile, the looming tenement building known as Gladstone’s Land is easily overlooked, but behind its unassuming façade is one of the capital’s most fascinating historic gems.

The six-story complex was developed by wealthy local merchant Thomas Gledstanes in 1617 and was renowned as one of the first ‘high-rise’ buildings of its time. Now preserved as a National Trust property, Gladstone’s Land has been restored to its former glory, offering visitors the chance to step back in time to 17th-century Edinburgh. Along with the original painted ceilings and beams, and an impressive collection of antique furniture, highlights include a traditional ‘luckenbooth’ shop-front, a 16th-century kitchen, a spinet and a selection of old maps and photographs of Edinburgh.

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Georgian House

Georgian House

2 Tours en activiteiten

With its elegant façade standing proud over Edinburgh’s New Town, the aptly named Georgian House is just that – a magnificent late-18th century Georgian Town House, beautifully restored to its original glory. Originally built in 1796 for John Lamont, chief of Clan Lamont, the house at 7 Charlotte Square is part of a grand palatial terrace block designed by Scottish architect Robert Adam. Bequeathed to the Scottish National Trust by the 5th Marquess of Bute in 1956, the property is now preserved as a house museum devoted to Georgian design.

Today, the house interiors have been fully restored in the style of the era, allowing visitors to step back in time and experience life in Georgian Edinburgh. Peek into the traditional Georgian kitchen with its open range fire; gather around the piano in the grand Drawing Room; and marvel at the extensive collection of late 18th and early 19th century silverware, porcelain, glass and furniture.

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Edinburgh Dungeon

Edinburgh Dungeon

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2 Tours en activiteiten

Lovers of spooky kitsch, you have discovered your Mecca. The history on which these gruesome attractions of Edinburgh Dungeon are based - hangings at the Grassmarket, Plague victims abandoned to die - may be real, but the treatment, complete with actor-led 'experiences' and rides, is true theater.

Descend into the bowels of the place and be confronted by ghosts, dodge grave-snatchers and cannibals, witness the drawing and quartering of William Wallace, creep into a 19th-century autopsy room with fresh plundered cadavers and even experience the thrill of your own hanging - as many times as you like! Teenagers will love it, but keep the little ones at home.

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Loch Lomond

Loch Lomond Tours from Edinburgh

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44 Tours en activiteiten

Who doesn't burst into song when they hear the words 'Loch Lomond'! A must-do day trip destination from Glasgow, this beautiful lake is perhaps only beaten in fame by Loch Ness.

Take a drive around the leafy western shore, and notice how the northern stretches of Loch Lomond morph from lowland to more stark highland landscapes, overlooked by the lofty 974 m (3,195 ft) heights of Ben Lomond.

Around 30 islands dot the lake, and boating enthusiasts take to the water on weekends in kayaks, speedboats and windsurfers. On the southern shore you'll find the Loch Lomond Shores complex, with an aquarium, shops, and restaurants.

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Blackness Castle

Blackness Castle

61 Tours en activiteiten

Blackness Castle, dat vaak ook wordt omschreven als het “schip dat nooit gevaren heeft”, is een 15de-eeuws fort op de zuidoever van de Firth of Forth, niet ver van Edinburgh. Het kasteel, dat de langwerpige vorm van een schip heeft, is door de jaren heen gebruikt als woonhuis, gevangenis, verdedigingslinie en fort. In de 16de eeuw werden er technische innovaties toegevoegd en in 1868 werd er een pier met poort en hangbrug toegevoegd. Toen het kasteel tussen 1926 en 1935 werd gerestaureerd, werden de meeste van de 19de-eeuwse toevoegingen weer verwijderd en kwam het kasteel weer terug in middeleeuwse staat.

Hoewel de meeste van de gebouwen tegenwoordig leeg staan, is het kasteel als historisch monument geopend voor het publiek. Een tentoonstelling geeft inzicht in de geschiedenis van het kasteel, met informatie over de machtige Crichton-familie, waarvoor het gebouwd is.

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Alnwick Castle

Alnwick Castle

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13 Tours en activiteiten

Alnwick Castle has been home to the aristocratic Percy family, who hold the ancient title of the Dukes of Northumberland. It is one of the largest inhabited castles in the UK and is now perhaps best known as the setting for Hogwarts Academy in the Harry Potter movies.

Starting life at the end of the 11th century as a Norman motte and bailey defence castle, Alnwick has expanded piecemeal and been consistently restored down the centuries; a visit today encompasses architectural styles from medieval through Gothic and on to Italianate neo-classicism. Alnwick has one of the finest private collections of decorative arts in the country as well as several museums or weaponry, war and archaeology – plus one dedicated to the successful TV series Downtown Abbey – housed in the castle’s towers, courtyards, keep and ornate state apartments, which were decorated by Robert Adam in the late 18th century and are crammed with paintings from the likes of Titian and Caneletto.

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Falkland Palace and Garden

Falkland Palace and Garden

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31 Tours en activiteiten

Once the favored countryside retreat of the Stuart kings and queens, the magnificent Falkland Palace has seen a long list of famous royals pass through its grand gateway. First built as a hunting lodge in the 12th century, the residence was transformed into a French Renaissance-style palace in the 16th century by King James IV and King James V, complete with 3 hectares of parks, orchards and flower gardens.

Now a National Trust property, Falkland Palace is a popular tourist attraction and an easy day trip from Edinburgh, offering visitors a fascinating insight into the lavish lives of the Scottish royals. As well as exploring the beautifully restored Royal Apartments and drawing room, visitors can take a peek at the Royal Chapel, admire the fine artworks on display in the Tapestry Gallery and Edwardian Library, visit the Gatehouse and walk around the vast grounds.

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St. Columba's Bay

St. Columba's Bay

2 Tours en activiteiten

St. Columba’s Bay, on the island of Iona off the coast of Scotland, is a beach of colorful stones that have been polished by the tide. It is known for its scenery and tranquility, with grassy knolls to relax on beside the water. Iona is a spiritual hub for Scotland as it was the center of early Christianity in the country.

Saint Columba is said to have first set foot on Iona landing on this bay in 563 AD, setting up his monastery thereafter. The bay is on a remote area of the island and it can take a bit of a trek to reach it, but the views and calm nature of the area are worth it. Seasonally there are often birds and wildflowers lining to path to the bay. Be on the lookout for the beautiful, small green stones that are known as “St Columba’s tears.”

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Preston Mill & Phantassie Doocot

Preston Mill & Phantassie Doocot

1 tour en activiteit

One of Edinburgh’s most picturesque, yet little visited historic sites, the 18th-century Preston Mill and neighboring Phantassie Doocot have received a surprising boost in tourism recently thanks to their appearance in hit TV show Outlander. The 16th-century mill stands on the banks of the River Tyne and features a Dutch-style conical roof that fans will recognize from Outlander’s 1940s scenes. A working water mill up until 1959, Preston Mill is now open only for tourists, but visitors can still watch the water-wheel and grain milling machinery in action on a tour. A short stroll from the mill, the quirkily named Phantassie Doocot is another photogenic landmark, a beehive-shaped pigeon house that dates back to the 16th century and once housed up to 500 carrier pigeons.

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Newhailes House

Newhailes House

Among Scotland’s most notable National Trust properties, the elegant 17th-century villa of Newhailes is most famous for its opulent rococo interiors and much of its original décor and furnishings still remain. Built by architect James Smith, the property was purchased by the Dalrymple family in 1709 and remained under their ownership until 1997.

Visitors to Newhailes can explore the house by guided tour, browsing the huge purpose-built library, the grand Chinese sitting room, the servants' entrance tunnel and the tranquil gardens, which include the remains of an 18th-century teahouse. Look out for the exquisite hand-painted Chinese wallpaper, the Italian marble fireplaces, the gilded eagles in the drawing room and the Chinese silk bed hangings, as well as a series of notable paintings by Allan Ramsay, Jean Baptiste de Medina and William Aikman, before finishing your tour with tea and cake in the onsite café.

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