This apartment is situated on the Canongate, on the Royal Mile, in the heart of Edinburgh's historic Old Town. The Royal Mile, the backbone of medieval Edinburgh, connects Edinburgh Castle at one end with the Palace of Holyroodhouse and the Parliament at the other. Edinburgh's main visitor attractions are on your doorstep and the neighbourhood is full of attractive independent shops and restaurants, bars and cafés to suit all budgets, from cheap and cheerful pizzerias to fine dining establishments. The Hub (the official centre for the Edinburgh International Festival) and the Festival Fringe office are on the Royal Mile, and you can easily walk to many of the Festival venues. You are also ideally placed to enjoy the Christmas and Hogmanay/New Year festivities.
Winding closes, cobbled alleyways, and ancient buildings along the Royal Mile create an atmosphere quite unlike any other city in Europe; much of the Royal Mile dates back to the Dark Ages, and it is an area of intense and brooding character. The Canongate is the lower end of the Royal Mile, and the apartment is within 400 metres of the Palace (HM the Queen's official residence in Scotland) and the Scottish Parliament.
The Canongate was a separate burgh from Edinburgh for over 700 years, taking its name from the canons (priests) of Holyrood Abbey. Because it was near the Palace of Holyroodhouse, the area developed as the court quarter and many fine residences for aristocratic families were built there. One of these, Queensberry House, now forms part of the Scottish Parliament building. Queensberry House was bought in 1686 by the father of the 2nd Duke of Queensberry, whose eldest son, the mad Lord James Douglas, escaped from confinement one night in 1701 and murdered a kitchen-boy – the very night that his father was signing the Act of Union that dissolved the Scots Parliament and put Scotland under English rule. You can find out more about Edinburgh's grisly past on the guided tours that leave from the Royal Mile. See for example Mercat Tours, Witchery Tours and Mary King's Close. Just along the road from the apartment is Dunbar's Close garden, an oasis in the city centre.