Midlothian, a historic county between East and West Lothian, is a region that manages to retain its traditional charm while embracing the excitement of modern Scotland. Situated in the southeast of the country and bordered by the city of Edinburgh to the north and the Scottish Borders to the south, it’s a unique blend of rural landscapes and bustling towns that deserves to be included in any sightseeing tour.
The northern side of Midlothian is dominated by the Pentland Hills which provide a dramatic backdrop to the rolling fields that surround the rest of the county, while the River Esk, divided into North and South Esk, adds an idyllic touch to the scenery.
There are several towns and villages with their own unique characters, including Dalkeith, the county town that’s home to the majestic Dalkeith Palace; Penicuik, which sits at the foot of the Pentlands; and Roslin, famous for the iconic Rosslyn Chapel featured in ‘The DaVinci Code’.
Midlothian’s wildlife is just as diverse as its landscapes. The Pentland Hills Regional Park is a haven for wildlife enthusiasts who can enjoy watching a variety of birds from skylarks to meadow pipits and buzzards. The park’s wide range of habitats also support foxes, badgers, and roe deer. The rivers and reservoirs inside the park are home to a variety of fish species, and the forests and woodlands are teeming with plant life.
At the top of Midlothian’s tourist attractions is the previously-mentioned Rosslyn Chapel, a 15th-century chapel with some of the finest stone carvings in Scotland. The National Mining Museum in Newtongrange provides an insight into the region’s coal mining heritage, while for nature lovers, Vogrie Country Park offers a wonderful assortment of woodland walks and picnic spots.
Dalkeith Country Park is another must-visit location, boasting beautiful walking trails that are suitable for all abilities, an adventure playground, and Restoration Yard which is a highly recommended retail and dining spot.
If you’re a fan of winter sports, the Midlothian Snowsports Centre on the slopes of the Pentland Hills is the perfect place to enjoy skiing, tubing, zorbing or snowboarding, and if you love woodland walks, the Gore Glen Woodland Park is a must-visit destination.
Find places to visit and things to do in Midlothian with these visitor guides.
Crichton Castle – situated in the rolling countryside of Midlothian – was built in the 1300s for the once-powerful Crichton family. The majority of the structure is roofless and in ruin, but visitors are welcome to explore it on a self-guided tour thanks to the restoration work undertaken by Historic Environment Scotland.
Dalkeith Country Park is located near Edinburgh in Midlothian. The historic estate features large grounds that include woodland and farmland where visitors can walk for several miles on rough tracks and tarmacked roads. Restoration Yard is a visitor centre that includes a children’s adventure park, gift shops and a restaurant. Entrance to Dalkeith Country Park…
Welcome to the hidden gem of Midlothian – Dryden Tower. Nestled amidst the lush farmland of the Dryden Estate near Bilston, this intriguing structure is a prominent landmark and is the highlight of the popular Roslin-Loanhead-Bilston circular walking trail. Despite its secluded location, Dryden Tower is a popular landmark to visit, especially for anyone looking…
The Midlothian Snowsports Centre is located in the Pentland Hills near Edinburgh where it offers a variety of fun experiences from skiing and snowboarding to the exhilarating tubing runs that are a firm favourite with children and adults alike. Discover what it’s like to hurtle down the slopes on one of these giant tubes in…
The Pentland Hills national park covers 35 square miles and is located southwest of Edinburgh. The parkland is clearly visible across the city and it’s a favourite place for locals to enjoy long hillside walks. Discover the Pentland Hills from picturesque Flotterstone in this complete guide which includes an overview and 360° photos.
The Pentland Hills are located south of Edinburgh where they span Midlothian and West Lothian in a regional park that’s over 38 square miles in size. There are 9 peaks over 1,500 feet in the Pentlands and more than 600,000 people visit them each year. There are a number of entry points to the park…
Rosslyn Chapel (as featured in The Davinci Code) is one of the most beautiful examples of religious architecture in Scotland. The chapel dates back to 1446 and features a complex arrangement of mysterious stone carvings that are believed to have links to the Knights Templar. Discover Rosslyn Chapel with this article which contains a detailed…
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