Edinburgh Castle

Visitors to Edinburgh cannot fail to be impressed by the majestic vista of the castle, overlooking the city. The 11th-century fortress dominates the skyline, encouraging tourists to explore its ancient barracks, halls and courtyards.

The Honours of Scotland

One of the major attractions is the chance to admire the oldest crown jewels to be seen in Britain. The centrepiece of the collection is the stunning royal crown, initially made for King James V, who actually wore it for the first time in 1540. Its most famous wearer was undoubtedly Mary Queen of Scots, who wore it at her coronation. Other, not to be missed pieces include the sword of state and the royal sceptre.

The Stone of Destiny

This mystical sounding object is a renowned ancient symbol, representing Scotland’s monarchy. Its position within Edinburgh Castle, assures its past heritage, and it has been housed here since 1996, having been previously stolen from Westminster Abbey.

The Great Hall

This sympathetically restored medieval room is home to a fascinating collection of armour and weapons, set below the giant wooden beams. It is worth looking upwards to see the carved stones which support the ceiling, decorated with traditional Scottish symbols such as the thistle.

The National War Museum

Found within the attractive Hospital Square, this museum has a vast collection of artefacts which span many centuries. Exhibits include letters from soldiers, military weapons and paintings.

A visit to Edinburgh Castle really requires an entire day to do it justice. Other than the attractions as mentioned above, there is also the opportunity to see the Portcullis Gate, the Argyle Battery, the Lang Stairs and the Prisons of War Exhibition. Hungry visitors are not forgotten with a choice of eating places, and for a special treat, a luxurious afternoon tea package can be booked in advance.