|The famous Calton Hill view with Edinburgh Castle to the left in the distance. The Dugald Stewart Monument.|
Recuperated from our long first day in Edinburgh, we enjoyed a hearty breakfast in the hotel restaurant and headed for more exploration of the city.
Day two in Edinburgh included a chilly, brisk wind and lower temperatures. Walking fast helped keep us warm, but we did stop in several spots to grab photos.
|The view en route to Calton Hill - East Princes Street Garden with the Waverley Railway Station|
|Looking up at the Scott Monument, just by Waverley Railway Station|
Our first destination was Calton Hill, located north of Holyrood Park and Holyrood Palace. It's considered one of the most beautiful and most photographed spots in Edinburgh, offering a great view of the city and its surrounding landscape.
Here's an example of one of the views:
On top of Calton Hill, there are several very recognizable monuments including Nelson's Monument, National Monument (looks like the remains of a Roman temple) and the Dugald Stewart Monument.
|Calton Hill is a cool and free spot to explore - it offers 360 views of the area around Edinburgh.|
|Calton Hill also offers you a great view of Holyrood Park.|
|Instagram photo taken of Frank viewing the other side of Edinburgh from Calton Hill|
Our next stop was a visit to Edinburgh Castle which looms over the city, on top of the ancient volcanic "Castle Rock". Stone, stone and more stone, in addition to a brisk wind, make this castle very chilly. Add to this many bloody historical conflicts and you have a cold atmosphere that permeates your bones.
|Edinburgh Castle (iPhone)|
My favourite spot to visit was St. Margaret's Chapel. I consider her my patroness, as she's the closest saint Margaret on the Catholic calendar to my birthday... and I'm named Margaret. It's the oldest surviving building in the castle, dating back to the 12th century and was built by her son, David I, in memory of her.
|St. Margaret's Chapel at Edinburgh Castle (iPhone)|
|The stained glass depicting St. Margaret, the Queen of Scotland - from inside the chapel at Edinburgh Castle (iPhone)|
The Royal Palace at the Castle is also a must-visit for history-buffs, with royal apartments (including the "birthing room" where James IV was supposedly born to Mary, Queen of Scots) and the Crown Room, where the famous Stone of Scone resides.
Our last stop of our tour of Edinburgh was the Scotch Whiskey Experience - a welcome warm-me-up after the chilly Edinburgh castle. It's located on the Royal Mile, just a few minutes walk from Edinburgh Castle. This is where I learned that I prefer Speyside whiskies. Frank is a lover of Highland whiskies, preferring the stronger, peatier taste.
|You get to keep the Glencairn Scotch Whiskey glass from your tasting|
|That's me in the mirror reflection, taking the photo of inside the huge Scotch Whiskey collection|
Our late lunch included a stop at the Made in Italy cafe in Grassmarket, where we enjoyed delicious panzerotti sandwiches and Peroni beer, followed by a cappuccino.