Last year, Edinburgh beat places like Prague, Madrid and New York to be named the most beautiful city in the world in the annual Time Out index. And 95 per cent of the Capital’s citizens were said to agree.
But Edinburgh’s appeal should not be allowed to overshadow the many attractive villages within easy reach of the city. Across the Lothians, over in Fife and down in the Borders there are many beautiful places to visit. Here are a few you might want to explore.
9. St Abbs
St Abbs is a small fishing village in the Borders, popular with scuba divers because of its clear water. And it saw a surge in tourism after it featured in the 2019 superhero film Avengers: Endgame as the location of New Asgard. St Abbs is just over an hour by car from Edinburgh. Photo: Andrew Thomson
Coldstream, on the north bank of the River Tweed, is where Edward I of England invaded Scotland in 1296. It's also home to the Coldstream Guards and the Coldstream bridge, spanning the border over the River Tweed. Nearby places to visit include The Hirsel country park and, over the border, Flodden Field. Coldstream is about 1 hour 15 minutes' drive from Edinburgh. Photo: Neil Hanna
Cockburnspath is a village in the Borders, between Dunbar and Eyemouth, popular with surfers because of nearby sandy beach Pease Bay. It's also a hotspot for walkers because it lies at the eastern end of the Southern Upland Way, the long distance footpath across southern Scotland, and a good base for exploring the Borders. It's less than an hour's drive from Edinburgh. Photo: Stuart Cobley
Roslin in Midlothian, seven miles south of Edinburgh, is famous as the birthplace of Dolly the Sheep, the world's first cloned mammal - thanks to Edinburgh University's Roslin Institute - and the home of 15th century Rosslyn Chapel, which was catapulted to worldwide attention by Dan Brown's best-selling novel The Da Vinci Code. Roslin can be reached by car in around half an hour. Photo: Ian Gardner