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Set on the southern shore of the Firth of Forth, Edinburgh has been the capital of Scotland since 1492. Edinburgh breathes still the spirit of its past and forever holds marks of its history, its streets running through town like scars of distant memories. The most significant maybe is the Royal Mile, which goes right through the Old Town and ends at The Palace of Holyroodhouse, once the home of Mary Queen of Scots and now the British Royal Family’s official Scottish residence. On both sides of this famous street, lays a unique combination of the cobbled streets and narrow lanes of the Old Town and the elegant Georgian grandeur of the neoclassic New Town - built when the Old Town became too putrid to be inhabited. This blend makes Edinburgh so peculiar and even described as one of the most beautiful cityscapes in the world. The Old and New Towns in Edinburgh become a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1995.
Edinburgh, laid over its six hills, is a historical and cultural bubble marked by Medieval and Georgian influences, from the small crooked streets of the Old Town to the gardens and neoclassical buildings of the New Town. Watching over the city, Edinburgh Castle is where past rulers took up their quarters and where you can find both the Country Crown's jewels and the Stone of Destiny, used for coronations.
Edinburgh is the perfect city to dine out in style, with a spectacular variety of restaurants serving up mouth-watering cuisine in atmospheric surroundings. Whether you are looking for Michelin-starred dining, hearty Scottish fare or food from around the globe with a Scottish twist, you’ll for sure find delicious dishes to suit every taste and every budget.
Slip in best-selling author JK Rowling's shoes and let your imagination flow as she did while sipping on a good cup of coffee in one of Edinburgh's charming coffee shops. Whether you want to try your coffee with scotch (you have a good excuse: it is local!) or just enjoy a piece of pie, Edinburgh has it all. The wonderful array of cafes that are scattered around the town are the perfect spots where to relax your feet or escape from the rain.
From traditional pubs offering real ales and leafy beer gardens to upmarket cocktail bars, Edinburgh’s bars and pubs are second to none. This thriving, modern capital city is as renowned for its nightlife as its history, so whether you’re looking for top comedy, a traditional ceilidh - a Gaelic gathering with folk music and dancing-, or an unforgettable club night, you are sure to find it here. Join the student crowd in Cowgate, drink whisky in upper-market George Street or head to the more raffish Lothian road: the choice is yours!
Edinburgh is the perfect place to indulge in some serious retail therapy and pick up memorable gifts for family and friends - and as the city is so compact, you can easily explore on foot and in the meantime enjoy spectacular surroundings. Classy George Street is the place to go for designer labels, while high-end couture such as Louis Vuitton and Versace can be found on the prestigious Multrees Walk or in the luxury shop Harvey Nichols. Nearby, you will find Jenners department store, a real Edinburgh institution offering a range of shops in a grand Victorian building. One thing is for sure, you will not leave Edinburgh empty-handed, the city caters to all tastes, styles and budgets.
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