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Walking Around Edinburgh

Edinburgh is a compact city, so it's easy to get around on foot. Remember that the city is built on several hills, so expect a few gradients - don't worry though as most of them are easily tackled by anyone of average fitness, and the views on offer are worth the effort!

If you fancy a quiet stroll away from the traffic, the city has a number of peaceful parks you may like to explore. In the city centre itself, you'll find Princes Street Gardens where you can relax with an ice cream or cup of coffee as you take in one of the best views of the Castle there is. Outside the city centre there's The Meadows, Inverleith Park, the Hermitage and the Pentland Hills. And, not far from the Royal Mile, there's Holyrood Park, where you'll find the imposing sight of Arthur's Seat, this extinct volcano is a well-known Edinburgh landmark and is worth climbing if you're feeling energetic (we advise that you wear sensible walking shoes if you decide to do this!).

For a relaxing walk and the chance to glimpse some local wildlife, take a stroll along the Union Canal or Water of Leith walk ways.

Beyond the city you'll find some great countryside and Country Parks which are great places to take a walk. To the west of the city you'll find Almondell Country Park, Beecraigs Country Park and Polkemmet Country Park.

Head south of the city and you can explore Vogrie Country Park, Roslin Glen Country Park and the Penicuik to Dalkeith Walkway. You can find details of these and other good walks in this area by checking out the Parks and Landscape pages of the Sports and Leisure section of Midlothian Council.

East and South East of the city, you'll find stunning coastal walks, railway routes and the Lammermuir Hills - find some great ideas for walks in this area at East Lothian Council.

Gentle walks around EdinburghGentle Walk

This is a gentle walk from Edinburgh City Centre, taking in the New Town with its splendid architecture, the historic Dean Village, the Gallery of Modern Art (which is well worth a visit), the Water of Leith walkway, bustling Stockbridge, eventually leading to the Botanic Garden and is an ideal way to fill a free afternoon.

A short-cut is available reducing the distance to 5 km/3 miles.

From the Royal Academy walk up Hanover Street to the new town area which boasts street after street of fine Georgian architecture. Continue by the sculpted grounds of the gallery of modern art to follow the surprisingly peaceful and leafy water of Leith Walkway.

Further on you reach Dean Village where time appears to stand still; mills operate here from as far back as the 12th century. Continue past St Bernard's Well with its marble statue of Hygeia. Walk by Stockbridge to finish at the city's impressive Botanic Gardens where you can catch a bus back to town.

Access Info

A walk in two distinct parts, starting and ending right in the centre of Edinburgh. The outward leg meanders through Edinburgh's New Town, the finest concentration of Georgian architecture in the country.

Additional Info

Begin at the Royal Academy (next to the National Gallery), which is right in the middle of Edinburgh at the junction of Princes Street and The Mound. Just about any city bus will take you near here, and Waverley rail station is five minutes' walk along Princes Street.

More Info

Some parts of this route are open only between 9am and 5pm (or dusk if earlier). The description on the WalkingWorld website explains how to bypass these and still get the best out of the walk, whilst aiming to complete it within these hours.

Moon walk Edinburgh

Some 12,000 MoonWalkers will participate in a midnight Power Walking Challenge to raise funds for breast cancer, with the marathon and half marathon 26.2-mile route lit up in pink in a show of support for the fundraiser.

The Royal Yacht Britannia will blaze pink – the colour of the charity – across Leith, while the Balmoral Hotel's clocktower will light up the east end of Princes Street. Some of the buildings will be coating their floodlights with pink gel to change colour for the night. Others are buying pink fluorescent bulbs especially for the occasion, while some will project the charity's logo – in pink – on façades.

Yet others will have window displays of the charity's trademark pink bras.

The Moonwalk is now an annual event.