Edinburgh’s medieval Old Town is the highlight of the city, with a great selection of sites and activities on hand. Tourists prefer hotels in the Old Town, where they can easily walk to restaurants, shops and museums.
The Old Town’s most famous site is the oft-photographed Edinburgh Castle. It’s over 1,000 years and surrounded by legends. Nearby the castle is the Royal Lyceum Theater, or tourists can follow the Royal Mile across the Old Town to the 16th-century Palace of Holyroodhouse. By day, the Royal Mile is busy with street performers and souvenir shops. By night, the action shifts south to the pubs and restaurants of Grassmarket and Cowgate.
Visiting the Old Town is all about getting acquainted with Scottish heritage and history. The Royal Museum and the Scottish Whiskey Heritage Centre are favorite first-day stops, but there is just as much to take in at small churches like Greyfriars Kirk or Huntly House, which houses the Museum of Edinburgh.
The Royal Scottish Academy may only date to the 19th century, but it looks like a Greek temple and holds an interesting collection of sculptures, paintings and architectural drafts. It’s near other art galleries including the National Gallery of Scotland, the Fruitmarket Gallery and DOM.
Most of the accommodation in Old Town Edinburgh is between Holyrood Park and Princes Street Gardens, in an area where visitors are never short of things to do. If sightseeing becomes burdensome, visitors can stop by the Brass Rubbing Centre to make a wax impression of a Celtic cross; or they can enjoy a show at the Edinburgh Festival Theatre or the interactive exhibits at Our Dynamic Earth. Other Old Town attractions are the Portfolio Gallery, Scottish Gems and Netherbow.