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Quiz: Are You An Expert on Edinburgh?

Updated on September 13, 2014

Are you ready to test your knowledge about Edinburgh?

Go on... give it a try.

You might surprise yourself at how much you know about Edinburgh! And if not, well you might learn a thing or two along the way.

The first question is an easy one. They do get a little more challenging - but if you've visited Edinburgh or know the city from movies or books, you are definitely in with chance.

Good luck. Do let me know how you get on!

Take the Quiz

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View of Edinburgh


The Royal Mile

The Royal Mile is the street (or, more precisely, succession of streets) that runs from Edinburgh Castle at the top of its hill down to Holyrood Abbey.

This popular tourist destination is lined with gift shops and restaurants.

On the Royal Mile, beside the St. Giles Cathedral, you can find a stone heart on the pavement. This is the Heart of Midlothian. You may not want to step on it, since many continue the tradition of spitting on the Heart for luck.

You will also find a lot of shops selling tartan and other traditional Scottish souvenirs.

Sir Sean Connery

Who would have thought it? Sir Sean Connery's first job was as a milkman in Edinburgh. He delivered milk to a former colleague of mine.

Nice disguise, James Bond!


The Scott Monument

Scottish writer Sir Walter Scott has been commemorated since 1844 with a monument on Princes Street, which is Edinburgh's main shopping street.

Scott wrote the novels Ivanhoe, Rob Roy, and Waverley, among others.

The gothic monument that pays tribute to him has been blackened over the years by Victorian pollution. It is 200 feet 6 inches high, and it is possible to climb to the top for a view of Edinburgh. However, this is only for those with the energy to climb the 287 steps of the narrow winding staircase.

The Scott monument appears in the film The Cloud Atlas.

Waverley Station

Waverley Station is Edinburgh's central railway station, and was named after Sir Walter Scott's novel Waverley.

The Flying Scotsman was a famous train service that ran between Edinburgh and London. This service began in 1862, with a train leaving each of these capital cities at 10:00 each day.

The journey time has been reduced from the original 10 and a half hours to 4 and a half hours.


Greyfriars Bobby

If you have ever visited Edinburgh, you may have seen a statue of a Skye Terrier on a plinth.

This is Greyfriars Bobby.

Legend has it that, after the death of his master, Edinburgh night watchman John Gray, the faithful terrier spent 14 years standing guard at his graveside.

Although on his own death, Bobby was not allowed to be buried in the consecrated ground of the churchyard, he is buried just inside the gate.

Greyfriars Bobby was made the star of a children's book of the same name, and 2 subsequent films.

The Forth River

The city of Edinburgh lies on the estuary of the River Forth. The estuary itself is known as the Firth of Forth - which may have caused you to guess the wrong answer in the quiz!

The Forth is currently crossed by the famous rail bridge and, alongside it, the more modern suspension bridge for road traffic.

The Forth Rail Bridge was completed in 1890. It is a cantilever bridge, 1.5 miles long. The bridge is painted with a distinctive red paint.


J. K. Rowling

Harry Potter first came to life on the page at a table in an Edinburgh cafe.

Multi-millionaire author J. K. Rowling was at the time an unemployed single mother. As her baby daughter slept beside her, Jo Rowling would drink coffee and write of wizardry and magic at a table in The Elephant House Cafe and Nicolson's Cafe in central Edinburgh.

She is English by birth, but has made Scotland her home.


The Edinburgh Military Tattoo

Each year, for 3 weeks in summer, there is an international gathering of military bands at Edinburgh Castle.

The night-time events take place beneath the floodlit walls of the castle and are always a spectacular experience. The highlight is the traditional pipers and drummers in full Highland dress, but here you will also see military bands from the far reaches of the globe, each in their traditional garb and playing their own military music.

The thrill of the Tattoo is easier to experience by watching than by reading...

Edinburgh Tattoo

The Port of Leith

Edinburgh's port is at Leith, and it is here that today you will find berthed the Royal Yacht Britannia.

Britannia was a home-from-home for Queen Elizabeth II and other members of the British Royal Family during state visits to all countries of the world.

The ship had 300 staff and would travel on state visits with 5 tonnes of luggage.

Famous people from Leith include Charlie and Criag Reid of The Proclaimers, and Trainspotting author Irvine Welsh.


Discover Edinburgh in Images


This beautiful photo book features all the popular sights of Scotland's capital, from the Royal Mile out to Rosslyn Chapel and Bass Rock.


Were you happy with your score? Or do you feel you have a thing or two still to learn about Edinburgh?

(Please, please, please tell me you got the first question right!)

© 2009 Indigo Janson

So, are you an expert on Edinburgh? - How did you do?

Submit a Comment

  • profile image

    anonymous 3 years ago

    I surprised myself by getting 6 out of 10. Very interesting quiz.

  • Scindhia H profile image

    Scindhia 3 years ago from Chennai

    Didn't know many of these questions. Fun quiz!

  • blestman lm profile image

    blestman lm 4 years ago

    Wow, I learned a lot. Sean Connery as a milkman. Hmmmm.

  • profile image

    ConvenientCalendar 4 years ago

    I learned a lot!

  • profile image

    penmypage 4 years ago

    sure did :) Very good quiz.

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