Scott Monument, Edinburgh

4.5 out of 5 stars 4.5 Stars - 59 Reviews

Princes Street Gardens East

Been here? Rate It!

hide
  • Scott Monument
    Scott Monument
    by Jim_Eliason
  • Scott Monument
    Scott Monument
    by Jim_Eliason
  • Scott Monument
    Scott Monument
    by Jim_Eliason
  • solopes's Profile Photo

    Elegant but dark

    by solopes Updated Dec 12, 2013

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Edinburgh - Scotland
    4 more images

    The cultural reference to Scotland, Walter Scott, couldn't pass without a significant monument in the capital.

    Soon after his death, in 1832, the movement began, and in 1844 was finished this elegant tower 60 meters high. The statue in Cararra's is a small white detail in the dark structure.

    Related to:
    • Arts and Culture

    Was this review helpful?

  • Askla's Profile Photo

    Why a monument to Scott but no one to Stevenson?

    by Askla Updated Dec 20, 2012

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    1 more image

    Works on the Scott Monument was begun in 1841 and only completed in 1845. It is 61 meters of hight with 287 steps inside to climb if you have payed the fee of 3£.

    Was this review helpful?

  • mickeyboy07's Profile Photo

    Scott Monument

    by mickeyboy07 Updated Nov 10, 2012

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    4 more images

    This Victorian gothic monument is dedicated to the Scottish author 'Sir Walter Scott'.It stands in Princes st.Gardens in the city centre.The tower is 200ft,6 inches high,and has a series of viewing decks reached by a series of narrow spiral staircases giving panoramic views of the city and its surroundings.It is built from Binny sandstone quarried in nearby 'Ecclesmachan'.Bill Bryson described it as a giant Gothic rocket ship.
    The monument was designed by 'George Meikle Kemp' a self taught architect who laid the first foundation in 1840,eight years after 'Scotts' death.It was restored in the mid 1990's with a cost of over 2 million funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and the city of Edinburgh Council.

    Related to:
    • Architecture
    • Arts and Culture
    • Historical Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • spidermiss's Profile Photo

    Scott Monument

    by spidermiss Updated Oct 15, 2012
    Scott Monument, Edinburgh
    1 more image

    I climbed up Scott Monument in September 1999 and it was worth the climb for the great city views at the top. The monument is named after the famous writer, Sir Walter Scott (1771-1832), whose was know for his popular novels in Europe. George Meikle Kemp designed the monument and he was inspired by the Gothic designs of Melrose Abbey and Roslin Chapel. Sadly he did not live to see the completion of the monument and Sir John Steell added the marble statue of Scott and his dog, Maidan, on the platform before the monument structure.

    The monument is 200 feet (or 61 metres) high with four levels made up of 287 steps. The monument was completed in 1946 and an inauguration ceremony too place on Scott's Birthday, 15th August 1840.

    It cost 3.00 gbp (September 2012) to climb up the monument and is opened daily.

    Related to:
    • Museum Visits
    • Historical Travel
    • Architecture

    Was this review helpful?

  • Nemorino's Profile Photo

    The Scott Monument and Statue

    by Nemorino Updated Jan 27, 2012

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    On Princes Street in the center of Edinburgh there is a tall (200 feet 6 inches = 61.1 meters) monument to the Scottish author Sir Walter Scott (1771-1832).

    Scott was the author of numerous books including the novel The Bride of Lammermoor, published in 1819. It is the story of a young woman, Lucy Ashton, who is forced by her family to marry a man she detests. She is driven to insanity, and stabs her husband on their wedding night.

    This story formed the basis of the opera Lucia di Lammermoor by Gaetano Donizetti (1797-1848), with its famous "mad scene" which goes on for about twenty minutes (after the stabbing) with mainly just the soprano and a haunting flute accompaniment. When people ask me what my favorite opera is I usually say this one, which I have seen in Hamburg, Hannover, Berlin and Darmstadt at various times. (I'm listening to Edita Gruberova sing it as I write this.)

    Related to:
    • Music
    • Theater Travel
    • Arts and Culture

    Was this review helpful?

  • Nemorino's Profile Photo

    View from the Scott Monument

    by Nemorino Updated Jan 27, 2012

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    View from the Scott Monument

    If you are not claustrophobic or afraid of heights you can pay three euros and climb a narrow winding staircase (287 steps according to the certificate they give you) up to the top of the Scott Monument, where you have fine views in all directions.

    This particular photo shows the view looking more or less Northeast or East-Northeast at Calton Hill, and beyond that the Firth of Forth.

    The monument was built starting in 1840, and was completed in 1844.

    About halfway up (or down) there is a room with some information, also in audio form in several languages, about Scott's life and writings.


    For some more views, please see my Views of Edinburgh travelogue.

    Was this review helpful?

  • etfromnc's Profile Photo

    A tribute to Sir Walter Scott (or his dog?)

    by etfromnc Written Nov 12, 2011
    The Monument (to Sir Walter Scott)

    The Scott Monument is a Victorian Gothic monument to Scottish author Sir Walter Scott. It stands in Princes Street Gardens in Edinburgh, opposite the Jenners department store, near Edinburgh Waverley Railway Station.

    The tower is 200 feet 6 inches (61.11 m) high, and has a series of viewing decks reached by a series of narrow spiral staircases giving panoramic views of central Edinburgh and its surroundings. The highest viewing deck is reached by a total of 287 steps. (Those who climb the steps can obtain a certificate commemorating the event.) It is built of sandstone quarried nearby. It has been described as looking like a "gothic rocket ship"

    Following Scott's death in 1832, a competition was held to design a monument to him. An unlikely entrant went under the pseudonym "John Morvo", the name of the medieval architect of Melrose Abbey. Morvo was in fact George Meikle Kemp, forty-five year old joiner, draftsman, and self-taught architect. Kemp had feared his lack of architectural qualifications and reputation would disqualify him, but his design (which was similar to an unsuccessful one he had earlier submitted for the design of Glasgow Cathedral) was popular with the competition's judges, and in 1838 Kemp was awarded the contract to construct the monument.

    John Steell was commissioned to design a monumental statue of Scott to rest in the space between the tower's four columns. Steell's statue, made from white Carrara marble, shows Scott seated, resting from writing one of his works with a quill pen and his dog Maida by his side. Maida was a Dandie Dinmont terrier first introduced to the literary world by Sir Walter in 1814 in his novel, Guy Mannering. I have long admired this breed, although I do not generally love typically yelpy terriers, and have tried long and hard to acquire one.

    The foundation stone was laid on the 15th of August 1840. Following an Act of Parliament permitting it, construction began in 1841 and ran for nearly four years. The tower was completed in the autumn of 1844, with Kemp's son placing the finial in August. The total cost was £16,154. When the monument was inaugurated on the 15th of August 1846, George Meikle Kemp himself was absent. Walking home from the site on the foggy evening of the 6th of March 1844, Kemp had fallen into the Union Canal and drowned.

    When the Monument was cleaned and restored in the 1990s, the cost was almost £2.4 million. Talk about inflation?!

    Related to:
    • Study Abroad
    • Budget Travel
    • Family Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • Durfun's Profile Photo

    A "gothic rocket ship"

    by Durfun Updated Apr 21, 2011

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    From the end nearest Edinburgh Waverley station
    2 more images

    This eye-catching structure stands in Princes Street Gardens in Edinburgh, opposite the Jenners department store on Princes Street and near to Edinburgh Waverley Railway Station.

    You can see the Edinburgh Castle in the background, behind it.

    It's quite a tall (61.1m), imposing monument, dominating the south side of Princes Street. Completed in August 1844 - in honour of the novelist and poet, Sir Walter Scott.

    Sir John Steell's statue of Sir Walter Scott is executed in Carrara marble and is more than double life-size. It shows Scott seated, resting from writing one of his works with a quill pen and his dog Maida by his side.

    287 steps take you to the top. There are several viewing decks, reached by a series of narrow spiral staircases. As you climb the tower, you'll see 64 statues of characters from his works. From above, you can get amazing views of the city.

    Opening Times:
    1 Apr - 30 Sep: Mon to Sat 9am - 6pm, Sun 10am - 6pm
    1 Oct - 31 Mar: Mon to Sat 9am - 3pm, Sun 10am - 3pm

    Admission £2.50

    *** The monument was designed by a joiner and self-taught architect, George Meikle Kemp, who entered the competition under a pseudonym to avoid prejudice; in March 1844 when walking home from the site one evening, he sadly fell into the Union Canal in the fog and drowned before the statue was completed :(

    Related to:
    • Architecture
    • Arts and Culture
    • Romantic Travel and Honeymoons

    Was this review helpful?

  • iblatt's Profile Photo

    Great Views from the Scott Monument

    by iblatt Written Nov 10, 2009

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The Scott Monument, Edinburgh
    4 more images

    Edinburgh chose an excellent location for the monument it erected in the 1840s in memory of Sir Walter Scott: on top of Princes Street Gardens, overlooking both the Old Town and the New Town.

    Sir Walter Scott's statue by Sir John Steell is dwarfed by the 61 meter tall neo-Gothic structure rising above it. Climbing the 287 steps to the top is well rewarded by the great views in all directions: Edinburgh Castle, the Old Town, Princes Street Gardens, the National Gallery of Scotland, the New Town and Calton Hill. To prevent misunderstandings: there is no elevator!

    Related to:
    • Architecture
    • Historical Travel
    • Family Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • littlesam1's Profile Photo

    The Sir Walter Scott Monument

    by littlesam1 Written Apr 8, 2009

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The Scott Monument

    The beautiful Sir Walter Scott Monument is on Prices Street. This photo was taken way the monument from the Edinburgh Castle. The monument was built between 1840-1846 in memory of Sir Walter Scott. There are steps so you can climb to the top of the monument. I read on google that there are 297 steps. So if you want to climb it, take a deep breath and wear some comfortable shoes. We did not climb the monument while we were in Edinburgh. It was very cold while we were visiting so climbing the monument was not our first thought for a fun time.

    Was this review helpful?

  • abi_maha's Profile Photo

    Imposing structure

    by abi_maha Written Mar 7, 2009

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The massive Gothic spire of the Scott Monument was built by public subscription in memory of novelist Sir Walter Scott after his death in 1832. You can climb the 287 steps to the top for a superb view of the city; the stone figures that decorate the niches on the monument represent characters from Scott's novels. The statue of Scott with his favourite deerhound, Maida, was carved from a single 30-tonne block of white Italian marble.

    Was this review helpful?

  • dhina's Profile Photo

    The center of Edinburgh

    by dhina Written Aug 6, 2008

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    2 more images

    You will hardly miss this also in Edinburgh, the memorial monument of the famous writer Sir Walter Scot. This 200 foot high monument which is located close to Waverley station and Princess street was officially inaugurated on 15th August 1846, 14 years after the death of Sir Walter Scot.

    Was this review helpful?

  • marinarena's Profile Photo

    Honour Scott, Sir Walter, that is

    by marinarena Written Mar 23, 2008
    Scott Memorial, Edinburgh centre
    2 more images

    History and Victorian-everything buffs have to see up close the glorious Scott memorial, named after author Sir Walter Scott. Construction was completed in 1844, after a lengthy competition. This is a not-to-miss Princes Street visual eye candy.

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Architecture

    Was this review helpful?

  • fairestmom's Profile Photo

    A Gothic Tower

    by fairestmom Written Jul 20, 2007

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The Scott Monument
    1 more image

    The Scott Monument is located on the east end of Princes Street Garden. This monument was built to commemorate the work of the poet, Sir Walter Scott who lived from 1771-1832. The monument was designed by George Meikle Kemp.

    The monument is constructed of light Pale Binny Sandstone from West Lothian--construction was completed in 1844. The tower is 200 ft. 6 in. high and has 287 steps to the top which provides a nice view of the city. Over the years the stone has darkened due to pollution in the air. Cleaning the monument was comtemplated in the 1990's but fear of damage to the sandstone prevented the cleaning.

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Architecture
    • Family Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • himalia11's Profile Photo

    Scott monument

    by himalia11 Updated Jul 6, 2007

    2 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Scott Monument

    The enormous Scott monument is located at the Princes Street and was opened in 1846. It is dedicated to Sir Walter Scott (1771-1832), a popular Scottish novelist and poet. It's possible to climb the tower, I think it's 3 Pound admission. I guess you have a nice view from there, but I prefer to stay on the ground!

    Related to:
    • Architecture

    Was this review helpful?

Instant Answers: Edinburgh

Get an instant answer from local experts and frequent travelers

73 travelers online now

Comments

Hotels Near Scott Monument
4.0 out of 5 stars
119 Opinions
0.1 miles away
Show Prices
5.0 out of 5 stars
180 Opinions
0.2 miles away
Show Prices
4.0 out of 5 stars
315 Opinions
0.2 miles away
Show Prices

View all Edinburgh hotels