Saturday, June 1, 2013

Trip to Edinburgh

Today we made our first trip into Edinburgh.  We are living only about 8-10 miles (if that) from the actual downtown.  There is no where to park in the city so we ventured out on the bus.  We are about one block from a major road into town.  We weren’t sure which bus was the best to take but the people at the bus stop were very friendly and helpful.  The bus system here is very, very good.  There are buses everywhere…the big double decker type.  We have applied for a bus pass but it hasn’t come yet.  Anyone who lives here, and is over age 60, can ride the buses free.  (Tax dollars at work)  It is amazing to see how these buses navigate through the heavy traffic and narrow streets.  (That is also a challenge when driving and they come up along side your car and your mirror is inches away from the bus.

We got downtown and it was a beautiful day.  We are still getting used to the weather so we had jackets and sweaters on and really looked like tourists since the “locals” were in t-shirts.  (I ended up carrying my jacket most of the day)  We wandered around town and then went into the National Scottish Art Gallery.  The art was amazing!  Pictures painted in the 1700’s and 1800’s.  Some were huge – maybe 20 x 25 feet – life size people and horses.

We then walked up to the Edinburgh Castle and wandered down the “Royal Mile”.  The street goes from the castle down to the Holyrood House.  It was really a neat street to walk and lots to see.  Over all...just a fun day seeing the City.  We mastered the bus and made it back home without any worries.

A view of the "Meadows" between the Old Town and the newer shops on Princes Street.  You can see that the day started out very nice.  Blue skies have become a real treat since we arrived.  We haven't seen that many!!

Through out the town we saw pipers up and down the streets.  They were close enough to one another that it seemed that you could always hear the pipes as you walked down the road.  Some cities have people playing guitars trying to earn a buck...Edinburgh has pipers!  Lots of "photo ops".

This was an old church (Kirk) just down from the Castle.  I took the picture and then we walked over to see the name of the church.  As is common in Edinburgh, many of the churches have been "repurposed".  This one contained a tourist information company and a restaurant.  We had a nice lunch here.
This Church was still an active church along the Royal Mile.

By the afternoon, the blue sky had given into clouds and the threat of showers.  This is the view of the Edinburgh Castle from Princes Street at the bus stop to return home.

This is the view of the Castle when we first arrived in the morning.  We have purchased tickets to attend the Military Tattoo in August.  This is one of the great events I still remember from my visit here as a young missionary...oh, so many years ago.  I am really excited to see it again.  This link may take you to the right website, but if not, just Google the Edinburgh Tattoo.
The Tattoo is a military festival that is unbelievable!!  Can' wait until August!!

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