Arthur’s Seat, the view that can’t be beat.

Arthur’s Seat.

Climb to the very top of Arthur's Seat and this will tell you everything you're looking at.
Climb to the very top of Arthur’s Seat and this will tell you everything you’re looking at.

If you visit Edinburgh, you will surely have heard the name Arthur’s Seat. A famous landmark, visited by tourists and locals alike and a great view point to see all around Edinburgh, if you manage it all the way to the top. It lies East of the city centre, approximately 1 mile from Edinburgh Castle and is 250.5 metres in height.

Arthur's Seat showing the famous skyline of the extinct volcano.
Arthur’s Seat – The famous skyline showing off the extinct volcano.

As well as being a popular site to visit for walking and hiking, Arthur’s Seat is also a site of special scientific interest, being important for its geology, various species of plants and animals and also their habitats. Indeed, if you have an interest in volcanoes and how they change the landscape, you should definitely visit and do a bit of research on Arthur’s Seat and the surrounding areas.

History on Arthur’s Seat

In history, Arthur’s Seat was used as a hill fort. Indeed, Hill fort defences are visible round the main massif of Arthur’s Seat at Dunsapie Hill and above Samson’s Rib.

You’re never alone on Arthur’s Seat. The view towards Calton Hill and the City from the foot of the hill behind Holyrood Park.

As you walk up the hill, the first thing that strikes you is how many people are visiting this area. Very easy to get to, with Holyrood Park just below, the Scottish Parliament building, Dynamic earth and The Palace of Holyrood House are also very near, public transport regularly passes this area. As well as this, there are car parking spaces at the Holyrood Park side. You are never alone while walking up Arthur’s Seat, there’s always someone to nod hello to as you pass.

A view of the loch and part of the city from a mid-point view.

The climb from the Holyrood Palace side is fairly easy up until the higher points, where it becomes rocky and not for those who aren’t sure footed, however, even if you only manage to go partway up, you can still be stunned by the lovely views of Edinburgh.

Looking over to Portobello.

If you’re a budding writer or film maker, Arthur’s Seat is inspiring, being the focal point of many famous book and films such as The Underground City by Jules Verne and One Day by David Nicholls.

As we said, you’re never alone on Arthur’s Seat.

Whoever you are, if you are coming to Scotland and you have the ability to use your legs, Arthur’s Seat should be on your go to list. You won’t be disappointed and you’ll be able to take photographs to impress your friends.

A Lovely Couple of Hours in Edinburgh Butterfly and Insect World

Just relaxing on a leaf

Winter Sundays in Edinburgh can be a bit slow. There’s lots to do but if you are feeling the cold and just want to be somewhere warm, what do you choose to do? Cinema, bowling, etc are all great but sometimes you feel like being in touch with nature again and one place you can do that is Butterly and Insect World at Lasswade.

Easily accessible by car or, if you prefer the bus, you can catch many buses to Butterfly World. Look on to see which bus is best for you. The bus stops right outside it.

I know I’m not a butterfly but do you like me anyway?

On their website, there’s plenty of information about what they offer as well as the standard opening times and prices. . Bear in mind that the ticket price is a day ticket so even if you go out for lunch or a walk around the nearby garden centre and shopping complex, as long as you keep your ticket you may go in and out as often as you want in that day. That means you can make a day of it in the area because, serviced by the same car park, you have Dobbies Garden World and its lovely cafe and shops such as Lakeland and Shuropody, etc

We love it here, hanging out with our buddies.

When we went on Sunday, the first thing that struck me was how small it was. However, we found that you could easily spend a couple of hours there just sitting and giving the butterflies a chance to come to you, which they did. While we strolled through, it was lovely to feel the warm, almost tropical temperatures and enjoy seeing the butterflies glide past us and, a couple of times, land on our hair and clothes! There are seats strategically placed to allow visitors to spend time just absorbing the quiet atmosphere and gaze at the various types of butterflies flying freely in this purpose made environment. On the way in you can purchase an identification catalogue which shows the types of butterflies you might see and allows you to tick them off as you identify them; a great thing for the kids.

Don’t worry, I’m behind glass.

In this area, there are other animals to see too. We spotted some bantam hens wandering about. There were tortoises and terrapins.

I want to touch your finger.

When we’d have enough of serenity we decided to challenge our fears a little and entered the reptile house. Again, not a huge place but it had enough to keep us curious. Snakes, lizards of various kinds, various insects and Spiders! Some of the biggest, hairiest spiders! Fortunately,  these guys were all behind screens and visitors could look on without worrying about one crawling up their leg.  There was also an area for nocturnal animals; slightly darker and here you could see various small nocturnal animals.

I’ve just emerged; where am I?

On the way out we had the obligatory look around the gift shop and there you could buy novelty items, big or small. Many things were offered at pocket money prices but there were also more expensive items if you wanted something a bit special.

Yummy, some rotting apples for dinner.

After our visit to Butterfly World we had a little stroll through the shops and the garden centre and noticed that there is a farm shop selling food as well as a butchers, a cycle shop and many others.

Absolutely beautiful

All in all, we had a lovely time and I would certainly recommend this day out. It’s suitable for all ages and abilities and especially if you have any little ones interested in bugs and beasties.  

If you wish to holiday in Central Scotland, see the facebook page for holiday accommodation in a central location of Scotland