Calton Hill in central Edinburgh is included in the city's UNESCO World Heritage Site. Views of, and from, the hill are often used in photographs and paintings of the city.

Calton Hill is the headquarters of the Scottish Government, which is based at St Andrew's House, on the steep southern slope of the hill; with the Scottish Parliament Building, and other notable buildings, for example Holyrood Palace, lying near the foot of the hill. The hill is also the location of several iconic monuments and buildings: the National Monument, the Nelson Monument, the Dugald Stewart Monument, the old Royal High School, the Robert Burns Monument, the Political Martyrs' Monument and the City Observatory.



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4.7/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Kelly Drummond (17 months ago)
Beautiful views all across Edinburgh and not too far a walk from the city centre. Quite steep to get up but not too long a walk up! Definitely recommend
James Grant (17 months ago)
Well worth a couple of hours of your time to go here. It gives you great views of both the old city and new. Free activity few mins walk from town. Bit of a steep walk up to the top but completely worth it. Great views especially on a clear day. Highly recommended.
system immune (17 months ago)
Absolutely stunning. The view from the hill is one of the best views of Edinburgh you can get. Would recommend going there during sunset on a sunny day.
Dionne Milligan (17 months ago)
Calton hill is one of the must visits when you go to Edinburgh, the walk up is so easy, yet the views are lovely all over Edinburgh. Lots of space to relax and have a picnic.
Emma Howard (2 years ago)
Lovely views over Edinburgh! Must go up if visiting on a nice day. Lots of steps then good paths round the top.
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Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

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Externsteine Stones

The Externsteine (Extern stones) is a distinctive sandstone rock formation located in the Teutoburg Forest, near the town of Horn-Bad Meinberg. The formation is a tor consisting of several tall, narrow columns of rock which rise abruptly from the surrounding wooded hills. Archaeological excavations have yielded some Upper Paleolithic stone tools dating to about 10,700 BC from 9,600 BC.

In a popular tradition going back to an idea proposed to Hermann Hamelmann in 1564, the Externsteine are identified as a sacred site of the pagan Saxons, and the location of the Irminsul (sacral pillar-like object in German paganism) idol reportedly destroyed by Charlemagne; there is however no archaeological evidence that would confirm the site's use during the relevant period.

The stones were used as the site of a hermitage in the Middle Ages, and by at least the high medieval period were the site of a Christian chapel. The Externsteine relief is a medieval depiction of the Descent from the Cross. It remains controversial whether the site was already used for Christian worship in the 8th to early 10th centuries.

The Externsteine gained prominence when Völkisch and nationalistic scholars took an interest in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. This interest peaked under the Nazi regime, when the Externsteine became a focus of nazi propaganda. Today, they remain a popular tourist destination and also continue to attract Neo-Pagans and Neo-Nazis.