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Spinkieden B&B; St Andrews Fife

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You may find this relevant information helpful when researching the area prior to your visit

As Edinburgh grew in the 18th and 19th centuries, it gradually absorbed several surrounding towns and villages into its boundaries, one such village being Stockbridge.

Stockbridge is situated to the north west of central Edinburgh, on the banks of the Water of Leith. The name of the village comes from the bridge that once spanned the river here and over which cattle used to make their way to grazing. Originally Stockbridge was just a small rural hamlet situated a few miles from the city centre. But the village then expanded rapidly in the 19th century as a popular residential area and so a lot of the houses date from this period – many of these are now considered to be the most attractive Georgian buildings in Edinburgh.

Particularly famous is Ann Street, which the poet Sir John Betjeman claimed was “the most attractive street in Britain” and which is now one of Edinburgh’s most exclusive addresses. The village is well worth a visit for it is a very picturesque retreat from the city centre, but is within walking distance of Princes Street. It is also well know for its profusion of antique shops so you could easily spend an afternoon browsing for that treasure piece. And for walkers is also close to the Water of Leith Walkway, a pretty path along the riverbanks of the Water of Leith.

Also in Stockbridge is St Bernard’s Well, a spa that was built in the 18th century in the style of a Greek temple. A spring was discovered here in 1760s, and it was soon popular to take the water for its alleged healing powers. The “temple” has recently undergone some restoration work, and is occasionally open to the public.

Edinburgh is situated on top of a series of extinct volcanoes, the tallest of which, at 825ft, is Arthur’s Seat.

If looked at from certain western angles, the rock is said to look like a crouched lion. However you will more likely view the rock from the Old Town part of Edinburgh, where the most obvious feature is the prominent ridge known as the Salisbury Crags. The volcano is geologically fascinating for although Arthur’s Seat has been extinct for over 350 million years, you can actually still see evidence of some of the lava flows that erupted eons ago!

In fact, it is supposedly this landmark that led the Edinburgh scientist James Hutton to first develop the study of geology. The name Arthur’s Seat is often assumed to refer to the legendary King Arthur. However, the gaelic name for the volcano is Ard-Na-Said, meaning “Height of Arrows”, and so the name is more probably a corruption of “Archer’s Seat”. There are several paths to the top of the volcano which, although fairly arduous, are well worth it for the views are magnificent. It is said that on a clear day you can see right to the hills of the Highlands!

Like many of the UK’s major cities, Edinburgh has a thriving art scene, a clear example of this being the excellent City Art Centre. This is one of Edinburgh’s more unusual art galleries, and so is definitely the gallery for anyone looking for something a bit different.

Located on Market Street in the Old Town, this six-story building was originally home to The Scotsman newspaper. However, since 1979 it has been the venue of the hugely successful City Art Centre.