Isn't it so often the case that whatever visitor attractions you live near, you hardly ever vist?!
I have been living in or around the Edinburgh area for over 15 years and have only been to visit the famous castle a handful of times.
With James having done his Juniour Tour Guides project at the castle last year, and Calum doing it this year, they were both really keen to show us around and tell us what they have learned.
So, on Monday Daddy took the day off and we all went for a day trip to the castle.
The castle is a great place to admire the views over the beautiful city.
The One O'Clock gun is fired every day, except Sundays. Yes, it's fired at one o'clock exactly and despite knowing about it, whenever I find myself walking in the centre of town at one o'clock (which isn't too often these days) it still makes me jump. Originally it was to help the ships down at the docks know the time of day.
James' class studied the Great Hall, built by King James IV, and here is our James telling dad the facts. For instance, the roof was made to look like the hull of a boat as King James loved ships so much. There isn't a single nail holding the roof up. Or, did you know that the spot James is pointing too was used by the King's aides to listen in to guests at a banquet and make sure no-one was plotting against the King?! They would hide in a small room behind that grill and the conversations funneled up to them. A King can never be too careful!
Whenever we go to the castle, we have to get a photo of David at David's tower. See here for the last couple of times.
Calum's class are studying the Royal Appartments, where Mary Queen of Scots gave birth to her son, James VI. Because there was so much turmoil in those days, and Mary was always under threat, her room was the one through the doorway seen below, middle right. It was a small room, but safe as it was built right on the sheerest part of the castle rock. The two windows show the view down, and the builders were paid extra danger money to build the room!
Finally, the top two photos are of the oldest part of the castle, built by King David. The bottom two are from the castle prison, the right hand one I took especially for my American friends!
That completes another Housefulofboys Scottish history lesson :0)