36 Hours in Edinburgh - Day 2

We started our second day in Edinburgh at our new favorite coffee shop -- Leo's Beanery.
I noticed that they have a pepper garden on the front stoop - spicy goodness!
Our goal today was to traverse the Royal Mile from end to end.  We passed a gorgeous display of flowers near Princes Street Gardens.
We trudged up the hill and were rewarded with a stunning view of the gate of Edinburgh Castle.
We got amazing 360 degree views of the city for our elevated vantage point.
A cannon is actually fired every day (except Sunday) at 1 pm in Edinburgh. Somehow we didn't hear it on Saturday.  I'm not sure how we could have missed it.
We toured the inside of the castle which included the crown jewels.  Interestingly, the crown jewels were buried for a significant part of their history during war and other times of conflict.
I liked this lion and crest guarding the castle entrance.
We finished at the castle and continued our walk down the Royal Mile.  We passed Lady Stair's Close and I noticed this unusual plaque which calls out that Lady Stair "gave supper to company of eccentric beggars".  Seems like an odd thing to commemorate.
Whisky fudge is quite popular in Edinburgh so we had to stop in and try some when we saw the "free samples" sign hanging outside the Fudge Kitchen.  It was worth sampling but I definitely prefer a sweeter, more chocolatey fudge.
We passed an eclectic antiques shop that caught my eye just off the Royal Mile.
We caught a glimpse of the sights on Calton Hill.
...as well as a view of a historic bridge running between Old and New Town.
The Edinburgh City Council Building had this odd statue of a man on a ladder standing outside.
We were tempted to try these old fashioned door bells and pull the cord to ring the tenant but soon figured out that they were there for decoration and not still functional.
Did you know that they sell haggis in a can in Scotland?
We stumbled upon Dunbar's Close Garden just off the road further up the Royal Mile.
The nicely quaffed hedges and pretty views of surrounding elevations were very relaxing and serene.
Walking further on the Royal Mile we saw two teenagers in frog costumes leaping one over the other.  Crazy!
The new Scottish Parliament features more avant-garde architectural choices.
Various quotes adorned the outer wall.  I particularly liked this one:

But Edinburgh
is a mad god's dream
Fitful and dark,
Unseizable in Leith
and Wilder by the Forth

...the rest is illegible
At the opposite end of the Royal Mile from the Edinburgh Castle is the Palace of Holyroodhouse.  This lion above the Queen's Gallery seems to be saying "Don't mess with me!".
The Palace of Holyroodhouse was lovely from the outside but we decided not to pay the entrance fee to go inside.  Instead, we opted to continue our walk to Calton Hill.
It was quite an uphill trek, but we were rewarded with an up-close view of the National Monument.
We also enjoyed panoramic views of Edinburgh.
The Nelson Monument is meant to look like a telescope.
We then took comfort in the familiar a second time today and popped in to the Captains Bar for more music (Kathryn and Friends were performing) and two more nips of whisky.
We also sampled McEwan's Scottish Ale.  It goes down easier than the whisky.
Aye...
I liked the decor at the Captains.  I felt like I could live the life of a pirate.
In our final hours in Edinburgh, we walked past this cute puss sitting on top of a parked car.
We ducked into yet another vegetarian restaurant called David Bann for an upscale dinner before heading back to the airport for the flight home.
We walked fewer miles than we did on Day 1 (5.5 miles compared to 10+), but they were definitely more strenuous and uphill.  I can say without a doubt that we made the most of our time in Edinburgh.

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Sidewalk Safari: 36 Hours in Edinburgh - Day 2
36 Hours in Edinburgh - Day 2
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