In fact, as it turns out, the Scottish capital has enough castles to match each one of its 7 hills – though some stand today in a ruinous state, have been extensively altered, or have been lost altogether.
If Calcutta in India is known as the city of castles, then perhaps Edinburgh should rebrand itself the Calcutta of the West.
We take a look at 7 of the city’s lesser-known castles, and where to find them.
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1. Craigcrook Castle, Blackhall
Situated around 3 miles west of the city centre, Craigcrook Castle was built in the 17th century and redeveloped extensively in the Victorian era. Today the B-listed medieval pile is a 5-bedroom mansion and the home of millionaires.
2. Craigmillar Castle
Craigmillar Castle is just one of Edinburgh's countless hidden gems.
3. Dingwall's Castle, Lower Calton (lost)
It sounds unlikely, but map evidence shows there was once a fortified castle on the site of Waverley Station. Built between 1525 and 1532, Dingwall’s Castle stood for several hundred years by the Nor' Loch valley, close to the eastern end of what is now Princes Street.
Photo: NLS Maps
4. Lochend Castle, Lochend
Also, known as Restalrig Castle, Lochend Castle hangs over Lochend Park and dates from the 16th century. It was reportedly burned by William Gilmour of the Inch around 200 years later. The remains, an L-plan tower house, now form part of Lochend House, an occupied property which is B-listed.
Photo: Creative Commons