Blast from past!
After dropping off my backpack at the inn, I grabbed my map and camera and decided to walk up to the Edinburgh castle. I started walking down the winding roads and after some distance, I came across some stairs between buildings. After a bit of wait and looking around, I decided it was safe enough to take these stairs between the roads at different levels and save on walking long distances. You may ask how I knew where the stairs led to. My friend, I am a smart traveler and a smart traveler just knows! So the stairs are something that is not mentioned in guide books or rather in the ones that I had read. I was thrilled to have discovered it! Ok, I know, something too small to be thrilled about but honestly I was glad I came across these stairs
Let me remind you, I was in the old city of Edinburgh packed with really, I mean really old, don't ask how old buildings along winding roads and the connecting narrow stairs between buildings. It was a very special feeling walking down the old city and talking a stroll through the history of the castle. Though it seemed interesting at that point of time, I unfortunately don't remember much of what I saw or got to know about the castle and history to write about it here.
All I can recall at this point of time is visiting some chapel, a few halls of the palace....oh sorry “the castle"...architect after all....can't make such mistakes, seeing but not hearing the "famous" cannon,checking out some crown jewels, the museum and of course the wonderful views of the Edinburgh new city
After a quick late lunch at the cafe on the castle grounds, I decided to walk up to the new city. The best way to explore a new country is to take its public transport or walk around. I always try to do that and I strongly recommend the same to you.
While getting to the new city, I passed by the princess garden at the foothills of the castle. One of the reasons why the gardens are so lush is because it was formerly a loch where the sewage of the old town got drained into. I got to know many such interested tit bits when I took the very informative haunted tour. Did I just put information and haunting together?..Yes!!. Edinburgh is the best place to go crazy with fear and learn at the same time. But let me get to that later. Where was I? Ah...the princess garden, certainly not the central park but still lively and happening with lots of monuments, handsome scots with their bagpipes and more monuments. But can one forget that the place was once a pile of s***. Hmm...I guess one can and enjoy its present form. When I look back now, I wonder why they decided to call it “princess" garden and not prince garden. Don't you think a prince and the place relate to each other more than the other way around!!!
The new city is like any other city in Europe with its trendy stores along High street and Princess Street. After a bit of window shopping and dinner at a fast food chain, hey!!!...let me remind you I am backpacking here....all I can afford are those two activities. Can I comment on the night life of Edinburgh, I guess not as I was back in my inn by 9.00 pm ready to crash after miles of walking? I also had a bus to catch at 6.00 am next morning. So no night life for me but I am not complaining. I thought it was a good start to one of the most memorable holidays!!
Location: Edinburgh Scotland
Date of travel: October 2007
Tip: Take the connecting stairs instead of winding roads while exploring!
Must do: Walk around the old and new city!
First: Make an attempt to understand the Scottish accent!
The Travel connection: Discover something that is not mentioned in the guide books!