Looking down across Dr Neil's Garden and Duddingston Loch

Dr Neil's Garden

Holyrood & Arthur’s Seat

Edinburgh’s quintessential secret garden, in the shadow of a 12th-century kirk, is one of the most peaceful green spaces in Scotland. Cultivated in the 1960s by doctors Andrew and Nancy Neil from a scrappy piece of wilderness where Arthur’s Seat slopes down to Duddingston Loch, the planting is a mixture of conifers, heathers and alpines, with a remarkable physic garden. Seek out a bench and soak up the meditative atmosphere of this special place.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Holyrood & Arthur’s Seat attractions

1. Duddingston Kirk

0.08 MILES

Poised on a promontory overlooking Duddingston Loch, this church is one of the oldest buildings in Edinburgh, with some interesting medieval relics at the…

2. Arthur's Seat

0.59 MILES

The rocky peak of Arthur’s Seat (251m), carved by ice sheets from the deeply eroded stump of a long-extinct volcano, is a distinctive feature of Edinburgh…

3. Holyrood Park

1.08 MILES

In Holyrood Park Edinburgh is blessed with a little bit of wilderness in the heart of the city. The former hunting ground of Scottish monarchs, the park…

4. Craigmillar Castle

1.11 MILES

If you want to explore a Scottish fortress away from the crowds that throng Edinburgh Castle, try Craigmillar. Dating from the 15th century, the tower…

5. Holyrood Abbey

1.24 MILES

David I founded this abbey in the shadow of Salisbury Crags in 1128. It was probably named after a fragment of the True Cross (rood is an old Scots word…

6. Our Dynamic Earth

1.24 MILES

Housed in a modernistic white marquee, Our Dynamic Earth is an interactive, multimedia journey of discovery through Earth's history from the Big Bang to…

7. Palace of Holyroodhouse

1.25 MILES

This palace is the royal family's official residence in Scotland but is more famous as the 16th-century home of the ill-fated Mary, Queen of Scots. The…

8. Scottish Parliament Building

1.29 MILES

The Scottish Parliament Building, on the site of a former brewery and designed by Catalan architect Enric Miralles (1955–2000), was opened by the Queen in…