Built on extinct volcanoes atop an inlet from the North Sea, Edinburgh invites exploration. This is a city of elegant streets, cobbled alleys, and striking sunsets. Edinburgh (pronounced Edin-burra) is also a busy, noisy place with a spectacular landscape. The buildings of this vibrant capital city, from the historic houses of the Royal Mile to the elegant Georgian terraces and crescents of the New Town, offer the perfect complement to the natural setting. Edinburgh's famous castle is especially beautiful, rising high above everything on a huge rock formation that juts out as if in defiance of any who would seek to invade it. Castle Rock, as it is known, is inaccessible on three sides, and has a long, descending ridge on the fourth side.
Edinburgh is filled with historic and literary association: John Knox, Mary Queen of Scots, Robert Louis Stevenson, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Alexander Graham Bell, Sir Walter Scott, and Bonnie Prince Charlie are all part of its past. Leith Links is a favorite with golfers, dating from 1593 when the first set of the official rules was formulated there. Its vibrant pub scene and action packed cultural events make this a city that is truly cosmopolitan and renowned world-wide.