For an off the beaten track sight, try a walk along the Water of Leith from Stockbridge, which is an area very near the West End of Princes Street. Start the walk beside the imposing castle style Pizza Express on Deanhaugh Street (really), go down the steps to the riverside towpath several hundred yards to Bridge Place. Turn left and then almost immediately right onto Arboretum Avenue. Walk to where the Water of Leith veers right and follow the footpath to the Glenogle Bridge; cross this onto the street and walk to Glenogle Road. Turn right and this will take you back to Arboretum Avenue where you can retrace your steps along the riverside footpath. The walk is just over a mile in length. You will notice some unusual housing between Glenogle Road and the Water of Leith, that have upstairs flat entrances on one side of the street and downstairs flat entrances on the other. These colony houses date from the mid 19th century to the early 20th, and were built by companies to house their skilled workers.
Make sure you visit some parts of the Georgian (mainly 18th century) New Town, which surrounds the Stockbridge area. Dean Village is another interesting spot underneath Telford's Dean Bridge.
The walk normally follows the river from |Belarno to Leith. We began our walk at Stockbridge and followed it to the Gallery of Modern Art.
The walk takes you under the Dene, under Dean Bridge and Belford Bridge. On the way you pass St Bernard's well with the statue of Hygeaia, the restored Dean village houses, Miller's Row and the three grinding stones, as well as seeing the weirs that would have powered the mills.
The path is shaded by many different trees. The river has weirs, areas of duck weed like an Impressionist painting, bridges and we even saw a heron. It took a couple of hours but we were not hurrying as we had two small children with us.
Walking along the river Leith on a warm sunny day is quite delightful. It is difficult to remember you are in the centre of Edinburgh. Especially during the festival when it is packed with visitors,
The trees are of different shades of green. the river is fast flowing or like a millpond, or a small weir or a cascade. Ever changing.
I'd heartily recomment this as a way to unwind after the tensions of the day's activities.
This footpath runs from Balerno for 12 miles down to The Shore at Leith. I haven't walked it's entire length (just Roseburn to Botanic Gardens) but it's a great place to get away from the bustle of the city streets.
Approaching the Dean Bridge from the West End of Princes Street take Bells Brae steeply down to the left into The Dean Village, explore this hidden gem, then walk along the riverside path to Stockbridge, a great area full of boutiques and bars.
The river running seemingly unnoticed through Edinburgh. The Water of Leith runs through and beyond the city. I took a stroll along the walkway from Roseburn Terrace (past Donaldson's impressive school) to Dean and then Stockbridge which brought me nicely back into the streets to head for the centre, having passed the Gallery of Modern Art on my way.
To escape from the hustle and bustle of the city, you only need go a few steps away. Running through Edinburgh but strangely secluded, the Water of Leith path winds from Dean Gallery way up to the northeastern reaches of Edinburgh.
There should be an entrance to the path near the Dean Gallery or the modern art gallery. Beautiful.
Escape from the bustle of the city with a stroll alongside the tranquil Water Of Leith. The waterway wends from beyond Roseburn via Dean and Stockbridge to Leith with a walkway along much of its length. The view shown is about ten minutes from the West End, near to the Dean Gallery.
Just another scene along the walk.
It is amazing that one can find so much green in a big city. It felt like being out in the woods instead of in the big city life.