Sometimes it's nice to escape the bustle of the city centre, and let the pace slip a little, and in a city where you spend a lot of... more » time walking - and often tackling steep gradients - it's a bonus to get a chance to take off your feet for a wee while.
The first of the attractions featured here - Surgeons' Hall Museums - isn't far from the city centre - it's just three minutes' walk from the National Museum of Scotland in Chambers Street, and that has recently been crowned as the UK's most-visited attraction outside London - but with its focus on some of the gorier aspects of the work and history of the medical profession - it's distinctly off-beat.
Visiting the other two attractions means leaving urban aspects behind, and heading for the Midlothian countryside, firstly to the village of Roslin (about 7 miles from the city) which is most famous for its ornate and mysterious fifteenth-century chapel, but which also sits beside a shady, wooded country park, which might be just the place to blow the cobwebs away. Once you've admired the chapel's carvings, indulged in some Dan Brown hokum, and looked at the more serious interpretation tools in the excellent visitor centre, make your way to the former mining museum of Newtongrange to visit the superb Scottish Mining Museum, one of the best surviving Victorian mines, and an anchor point of the European Route of Industrial Heritage, where superb guides and accessible displays bring colliery life alive. less «