Princes Street, Edinburgh looking east from atop Scott Monument.

This evening, I am focusing on Princes Street in Edinburgh, Scotland which is one of Europe’s most celebrated streets. This street runs for about one mile on an east-west axis and acts as a dividing line between Edinburgh’s 18th century New Town and the old medieval sector which includes the Royal Mile.

Princes Street is Edinburgh’s premier shopping destination which offers an open aspect to the Princes Street Gardens and Castle to the south.

  • Shops line only one side of the street, leaving the opposite side a garden space giving shoppers views of the Old Town cityscape.
  • Here can be found destination and flagship stores such as Debenhams, House of Fraser, Zara, Primark, M&S and the historic Jenners,
  • For tech enthusiasts there is the Apple Store at the east end of the street. Health and beauty brands are also all present, including Boots, Superdrug and The Body Shop.
  • Princes Street Gardens is the venue for seasonal markets including the traditional German Christmas Market while the Edinburgh Farmers’ Market selling fresh home-grown produce is held every Saturday from 9am – 2pm in nearby Castle Terrace.

There is a concentration of historic buildings and monuments on and accessible from Princes Street which includes:

  • Duke of Wellington Statue by Sir John Steell, 1852. Erected to commemorate the Battle of Waterloo.
  • Register House by Robert Adam and Robert Reid, 1774-1834. Houses Scotland’s national records.

Register House, Princes Street, Edinburgh

  • Scott Monument by George Meikle Kemp, 1844. A complex Gothic design which commemorates poet and novelist, Sir Walter Scott.

Scott Monument, Edinburgh, Scotland

  • Royal Scottish Academy by William Playfair, 1832. Houses contemporary art.

Royal Scottish Academy, Edinburgh.

  • National Gallery by William Playfair, 1845. Houses a world-class collection of fine art.

Scottish National Gallery, Edinburgh

  • Allan Ramsay Statue, Princes Street Gardens, by Sir John Steell, 1865. Ramsay was an 18th century portrait painter.
  • St. John’s Church by William Burn 1816. A Gothic revival building with fan-vaulted interior.
  • Waldorf Astoria Hotel (formerly the Caledonian) by Peddie and Washington Browne, 1902. Combines Dutch Baroque gables with French roofs. Originally a railway hotel.
  • View of monuments on Calton Hill to the east.
  • Princes Street Gardens.

Floral clock, West Princes Street Gardens, Edinburgh

Princes Street Gardens, Edinburgh.

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