Edinburgh Castle

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Find the Best View of Edinburgh Castle

If you're looking for picturesque, you'll love Edinburgh. The cityscape of the Scottish capital is a feast for the eyes, topped by the imposing Edinburgh Castle at its highest point. To get the best view of this beautiful city, head to these five points.

  • Calton Hill

    1. Calton Hill

    One of the oldest public parks in Scotland, Calton Hill is a local favorite. It's also an easy climb – in just five minutes, you'll be able enjoy the spectacular views.

  • Princes Street Gardens

    2. Princes Street Gardens

    This lovely, perfectly-maintained public garden offers a breathtaking view of the castle from below. Just head to the Ross Fountain to the West and look up, you'll be amazed.

  • Arthur's Seat

    3. Arthur's Seat

    A dormant volcano sitting 251m above sea level, Arthur's Seat offers a magnificent aerial view of the city and castle. Be sure to check out the historic fort there, too.

  • Blackford Hill

    4. Blackford Hill

    It may not be as famous as Calton Hill or Arthur's Seat, but Blackford Hill has views that are just as gorgeous. It's also home to the Royal Observatory, a favorite of astronomy lovers.

  • Dorothy's Eye View

    5. Dorothy's Eye View

    This view of the castle inspired George Gibson to paint the Emerald City from Wizard of Oz. Head to the corner of Bread Street and Spittal Street and behold: Emerald City!

Planning Your Visit

  • Sunset over Edinburgh Castle

    For a view that you'll remember for the rest of your life, watch the sun set over Edinburgh Castle. The best spots for this are Arthur's Seat and Calton Hill, both located to the East of the city center. The deep-red sun, the colors in the sky, and the black silhouette of the castle come together in an absolutely magnificent panorama.

  • Fireworks

    If you're lucky enough to be in Edinburgh when there are fireworks going off over Edinburgh Castle, for example on Hogmanay or at the end of the Edinburgh Festival, then make sure to head to one of these viewpoints to admire the show and snap some amazing photographs. Princes Street Gardens and Calton Hill are likely to be the most popular spots to watch the fireworks, so if you're looking for a less crowded experience, Blackford Hill and Arthur's Seat are better bets.

Good to know

  • When should I visit?
    Opening hours from 9:30AM - 6PM year-round, except for December 25th and 26th.
  • Is it expensive?
    Free to look at from the outside, £17 for adult entry.
  • Will I need a guide?
    Only if you want one.
  • How to get there
    Hop-on-hop-off buses stop at the Castle. You can make your own way by taking bus 24 to Waverly Bridge and walking.
  • Additional information

    • It never hurts to carry an umbrella when in Scotland!

    • Since you'll be climbing hills, good walking shoes are a must.

Other Sightseeing Options in Edinburgh Castle

Want to discover all there is to do in Edinburgh Castle? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Edinburgh Castle

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 10,254 reviews

Helpful staff when collecting the tickets, informative commentary on the tours. Handy for getting about the city. The three attractions were interesting and informative. Top tip - do Britannia and holyroodhouse palace in one day and Edinburgh castle on a different day.

Excellent way to enjoy all the city and surrounding areas . We bought tickets for the 3 bus routes and planned our days accordingly., Buses were clean and ran on time , no problem waiting . Would recommend especially to people who have not been to Edinburgh before.

The staff at the start were very efficient and friendly in organising our tickets for the activities. They make the journeys special, a bit of humour,laughing at themselves and always giving interesting facts along the way.

Worth every penny! Easy to purchase tickets using the app.

Fantastic way to see the city & such lovely staff.