Royal Botanic Garden
Royal Botanical Gardens © glynniqua
Not just any garden, the Edinburgh Botanic Garden is acknowledged as one of the finest in the world, featuring six percent of all the world's known plants, the most tender being cosseted in glasshouses. Visitors can admire vegetation from 10 climate zones from tropical palms to arctic tundra, and see some of the world's oldest plants in the orchid and cycad house. There are also several restaurants and cafes, and a gift shop. The garden was established in 1670 as a physic garden in Holyrood, was later moved to Leith and was firmly planted in Inverleith in 1820, where it has remained a top attraction ever since; it is now one of the top ranking attractions in Edinburgh according to tourists. Although the garden is at its best and busiest in the summer months, the impressive greenhouses are worth visiting at any time of year, making the botanic garden immune to the seasons at least to an extent. The views of Edinburgh Castle from the garden are some of the best in the city. The plants are very well labelled, and route maps can be picked up at the visitor centre.
Address: 20a Inverleith Row
Telephone: (0)131 552 7171
Transport: Buses 8, 17, 23 and 27 connect the city centre to the east gate of the Gardens
Opening times: Open daily, from 10am to 4pm (November to January); 10am to 5pm (February and October); and 10am to 6pm (March to September)
Admission: General admission to the Gardens is free. Fee for Glasshouses: £4 (adults), £1 (children)