Hike/Walk to the one of the highest points near the city center of Edinburgh, Scotland for history and an amazing sunset view.

Calton hill is a great place and one of the easiest places to watch a beautiful Scottish sunset....as long as the weather cooperates. I tried for three days in a row to catch a great sunset from the top of Calton Hill. I was able to capture an average sunset, but nothing like the amazing pictures I've seen. My pictures don't do this cool and easy stop in Edinburgh justice. The hike is more of an easy walk to enjoy great views. There is even a cafe on top to grab a tea and enjoy the sunset. I walked a total distance of about 2 miles as I walked up to the hill, around the monuments and back down. You could walk a little more or less depending on how much time you spend on the hill.

Calton Hill is a great hike because it is short, not very steep and the entire trail is paved or stairs. It isn't far from town center, the train station or the end of the metro tracks. The hill is home to the Scottish National Monument dedicated to former soldiers, the Scottish government headquarters and the Scottish Parliament building. The hill also offers views of the entire city landscape.

The top of the Hill also contains a very rare and interesting cannon that has traveled the world to end up atop this hill. The cannon was originally built by the Portuguese in the 1500s, was used to fight in Burma. Captured by the British and presented to the city of Edinburgh in the 1800s where it was placed atop Calton Hill. Today Calton Hill is famous for the fire festival that happens each April 30th.  

Pack List

  • Good Shoes
  • Camera
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RT Distance 2 Miles
Elevation Gain 300 Feet
Activities Chillin, Photography, Hiking
Skill Level Beginner
Season Year Round
Trail Type Loop
Dog Friendly
Family Friendly
Food Nearby


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Overall rating: 

Cool city hike!

Awesome little walk that gives you great views of the city and the Firth of Forth. Lots of interesting monuments at the top too!

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