Day 363: Edinburgh to Musselburgh – Scotland’s Beautiful Capital

Midlothian, Scotland

Date of walk: 2/12/19 plus three extra days in the city.

Waiting for sunrise. Arthur’s Seat, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Arthur’s Seat at dawn, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Portobello from Arthur’s Seat at dawn, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Sunrise from Arthur’s Seat, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Edinburgh chimneys I, Scotland.

The luminous interior of the Grand Gallery in the National Museum of Scotland that was inspired by the Crystal Palace, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Morning light illuminates St Giles’ Cathedral, the High Kirk of Edinburgh and the dome of the old Bank of Scotland building, Scotland.

Unicorn (Scotland’s national animal) with Saltire on Mercat Cross, Edinburgh, Scotland.

From Arthur’s Seat, Edinburgh, Scotland.

St Peter’s Episcopal Church on a frosty morning, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Tierceron vault at St Giles High Kirk, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Frosty rooftops from Arthur’s Seat, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Spin, Soar & Scott, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Edinburgh Castle from Salisbury Crags in Holyrood Park, Scotland.

Arthur’s Seat rising above the city, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Edinburgh Spires, Scotland.

Edinburgh chimneys II, Scotland.

St Giles’ High Kirk crown steeple I, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Mayfield Salisbury Parish Church from Arthur’s Seat, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Holyrood Park, Edinburgh, Scotland.

The Balmoral clock tower, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Winter’s morning at Salisbury Crags, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Bailey’s Barber Shop, Edinburgh, Scotland.

The National Monument on Calton Hill with the Old Royal High School, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Sunset over Princes Street from Calton Hill, Edinburgh, Scotland.

The cupola of the upper library of the Signet Library, designed by the architect William Stark and decorated with a frieze by the artist Thomas Stothard RA (1755 – 1834). Stothard’s painting was commissioned to show the deities and esteemed authors of the past whose works could be read in the library. The figures include Cicero, David Hume, Adam Smith, Homer, Shakespeare and Burns. The work was completed 200 years ago for George IV’s visit to Edinburgh in 1822. Parliament Square, Edinburgh Old Town, Scotland.

WaverleyGate crown (St James Quarter cranes), Edinburgh, Scotland.

Salisbury Crags from Blackford Hill, Edinburgh, Scotland.

East Tower of the Royal Observatory built in 1896 that houses a 90 cm Cassegrain reflector, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Central stained glass window of St Giles High Kirk, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Edinburgh chimneys III, Scotland.

Scott Monument, a Victorian Gothic monument to Scottish author Sir Walter Scott, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Last kiss of light at Edinburgh Castle, Scotland.

Detail of Central stained glass window of St Giles High Kirk, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Optimally dreich conditions to fully appreciate the Twin Cones of Leith, Scotland.

Victorian cast iron columns and timber roof arches in the Grand Gallery of the National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh.

Salisbury Crags with St Peter’s Episcopal Church from Blackford Hill, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Fridge magnet Edinburgh, Scotland.

St Giles’ High Kirk crown steeple II, Edinburgh, Scotland.

A profusion of bosses in the vaults of the Thistle Chapel, St Giles High Kirk, Edinburgh, Scotland. The foliate bosses depict the national flowers of the countries of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. The angelic bosses hold the shields of the eight Knights at the time of the Order’s foundation and the six Knights added by Queen Anne. The central bosses depict the Royal arms of Scotland, Saint Giles, the star of the Order of the Thistle, Saint Andrew, and the Pelican in her piety.

St Peter’s Episcopal Church with Blackford Hil, Edinburgh, Scotland.

The Nelson & National Monuments, Calton Hill, Edinburgh.

Atop the rock, Edinburgh, Scotland.

The Golden Boy (The Figure of Youth Statue) on the dome of Old College, The University of Edinburgh, Scotland.

“Are we paying for this?” a dog walker asks as I’m taking a snap. “I doubt it, looks like someone playing about.” I reply. ”Well as long as it’s kids playing & not the Arts Council or anything that we have to pay for. The dog does like to pee on it though.” Portobello, Scotland.

Ross Fountain with Edinburgh Castle at dusk I, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Edinburgh Castle afterglow, Scotland.

George Heriot’s School from the the Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh.

Dugald Stewart Monument with laser, Calton Hill, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Ross Fountain with Edinburgh Castle at dusk II, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Princes Street from Calton Hill, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Preparing rations to take me over the border in 10 days & packing plenty of warm kit for the cold nights in the tent ahead. Destination for this leg is Newcastle before Xmas.

Dehydrated evening meal supplies.

Porridge supplies.

Food bags for sending ahead from Edinburgh to Newcastle.

Camera and lenses back from Canon after deep clean, repair and calibration.

Shiny new top plate after the original got damaged.

The bottom plate is still the original.

On the way to catch the sunrise over Edinburgh from Arthur’s Seat….

Special light today in Edinburgh.

Salisbury Crags (the remains of an underground magma intrusion) and the extinct volcano of Arthur’s Seat rising above Edinburgh as seen from Blackford Hill earlier today.

Some of my regular daily essentials I don’t need while exploring Edinburgh.

Sitting on the job at the Signet Library. Photo: James Hamilton.

Shed Poetry (draft and published versions).

Waiting for the bobble hats to move out the way and trying not to slip off that icy mound.

The mark of a quality establishment.

Enlightenment and Sichuan.

Like Prague or Oxford, Edinburgh is so comprehensively attractive that it’s been hard to take a photo with any authorship, but it’s been a joy to try in the four days I’ve been here. I feel seduced! Back to the tent & the hike tomorrow where I head east from Musselburgh

Heading up to Edinburgh. North into the night.
Frosty dawn from Arthur’s Seat.
It’s been a cold and luminous day in Scotland’s capital.
Edinburgh from a frosty Blackford Hill.
What a fantastic walk it is along the tops of Salisbury Crags – and so close to the city.
National Museum of Scotland interior inspired by the Crystal Palace.

The Perimeter is a labour of love: it’s taken 454 days of walking, hundreds of hours of planning and thousands of hours of editing. If you have the means, I’d appreciate your support by buying a print or contributing so I can continue to share the project with you.

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British Architectural & Landscape Photographer.

9 thoughts on “Day 363: Edinburgh to Musselburgh – Scotland’s Beautiful Capital”

  1. Paul Davis says:

    Cracking set of images and videos Quintin.

  2. kevan hubbard says:

    I always think about the Sailsbury Crags ,Arthur’s Seat and associated hills as part of the Highlands in the city and should be protected as an urban National Park like the Swedes have recently done with the Royal Djurgaden NP in Stockholm (well worth a visit if you are in Sweden).I don’t, I’m afraid favour,laser beams and had a night of stargazing ruined in already very light polluted,but warm at least!, Singapore.I was lying in a park observing the brighter stars,it being on the Equator means a lot of the Southern hemisphere stuff is visible, and the the laser light show began and time to go back to the hotel!

    • They feel like the highlands for sure. They seem very well looked after – I’m not sure if their legal status. I find the laser exciting and beautiful but I might feel different if it was a permanent feature.

  3. statto1927 says:

    Another fabulous set of photos Quintin. Only been to Edinburgh once and then only passing through. These photos definitely make me want to go a pay a proper visit.

  4. I love how your beautiful set of images captured those cold crisp days we get here sometimes. And I’m relieved that you got weather like this and not just endless driech or drizzle instead! It does strike me that you caught the town right at the coldest point of the year, though. I can’t help but wonder how you might have recorded the place in a different season! And now, of course, I wonder exactly the same about every other bit of the route, too…

    • It felt like a gift for me as as every sunset and sunrise was spectacular apart from one drookit day when I walked to Musselburgh hence hardly any images of Leith & Portobello. The low sun angles and harsh shadows of winter was a problem within the dark chasm of the streets (hence no photos of New Town despite looking for a long time) which is why I majored on views from the hills within the the time I had.

Whether you have comments on the photos, some knowledge or a personal story on this area you’d like to share, or you’ve spotted a typo or error, I’d love to hear your thoughts.