Princes Street is Edinburgh’s busiest shopping street, but it also holds a lot of history and there is far more to see than the many high street shops. Here are our top five things to do on Princes Street other than shopping.
This very grand public park beneath Edinburgh Castle can be accessed via gates all along Princes Street, on the opposite side of the road to the shops. There is always something happening in Princes Street Gardens, from the Winter Wonderland at Christmas, to Summer Festival events, to various concerts and celebrations throughout the year. Popular sights include the famous Floral Clock and impressive Ross Fountain.
You can’t miss this 200 foot Gothic tower at the East End of Princes Street. Completed in 1844, the Scott Monument was built in honour of Sir Walter Scott, the Scottish author of Rob Roy, Ivanhoe and many other famous novels. Climb the 287 steps for fantastic views of Edinburgh.
This is the Scottish National Gallery of fine art. It can be found towards the middle of Princes Street, on The Mound. A must-see for art lovers, the gallery includes masterpieces from great artists Cézanne, Constable, Degas, Monet, Goya, Gauguin, El Greco, Titian and many more.
The open top city Bus Tours are a great way to explore Edinburgh, particularly if you only have a day or two to pack everything in. You can start the tour from Waverley Bridge next to the railway station, just off Princes Street, and can hop on and off the buses as many times as you like to explore the various attractions along the way.
Every year on Hogmanay (New Year’s Eve), Princes Street is transformed into an outdoor party venue with live music, entertainment and a spectacular fireworks display. People travel from all over the globe to experience this world-famous event.
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