My Photo

Flowers and Gardens













Cornflower book group

Please note

  • Sidebar book cover thumbnail pictures are affiliate links to Amazon, and the storefront links to Blackwell's and The Book Depository are also affiliated; should you purchase a book directly through those links, I will receive a small commission. Older posts may also contain affiliate links to one of those bookshops. I am not paid to produce content and all opinions are my own.

« Knitting with Monty and Neil | Main | Island life - part 2 »


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.


Is it any easier to walk down Prince's Street now? Are the trams now running and the barracades gone? Can you walk on the Gardens side again? For the past year I have dreaded having to walk in Princes' Street when visiting the city, the views make it just bearable!

Dark Puss

"oh, how dire and drear some of those shops are, and the terrible blandness of the music they play, and the tat they sell, and the disarray of the stock"

Indeed, and I echoed this lament recently on Cornflower. How our dear city is fallen on hard times in this respect. What on earth is the Balmoral Hotel? Surely that's the North British!


So for one coming to Edinburgh in mid-March, where would you suggest one go for non-tatty shopping? Staying in Old Town and only there for 3 days.

tea and cake

What a shame! I love shopping - oh, the array of beautiful things to at least look at, if not buy! I live by a small town, midway between Perth and Dundee. And, while they do have some lovely things, Edinburgh is such a treat to go and see items, that I've only seen a picture of on t'internet. And, so near to the lovely Ikea. Nope, this is not ironic at all - I do love a shopping trip, even if I don't buy anything at all.

Barbara MacLeod



Mary, there are a few suggestions of places worth visiting in this post:
but as it's a year old there's the odd thing which is out of date, eg. the Portrait Gallery is currently closed for renovation.
George Street has better shops than Princes Street, and some of the smaller streets, such as William St. in the West End (Helen Bateman shoes:, Dundas St. (galleries/cashmere/leather goods), Howe Street, etc., have interesting and unusual shops.
If you're looking for anything in particular, let me know and I'll try to help - not that I'm much of an expert!


No trams as yet, Fran, and work is still going on, but I think you can walk all the way along the gardens side just now and there seems to be less disruption than there was. That said, the situation changes all the time, foxing residents who are just trying to go from B to A using the reverse route they took from A to B only an hour or two earlier, which they now find to be blocked, and causing delays and frustration!!


Good point, Barbara!


I think if we hadn't had to go on a Saturday afternoon the whole thing might have been more pleasurable!


Indeed it is, and why they had to change the name is beyond me!

Dark Puss

As an Edinburghian it slightly pains me to say "I agree"!

Ruth M.

From far away, it's still a pleasure to see some views of Edinburgh... so many years since I visited but I loved it then and love seeing it now. The "city" I live in wasn't even established until 1963. We have all the tattiness and traffic but none of the interesting history or architecture to fall back on. Thanks for those pix, Cornflower!

Dark Puss

Well if you are in the Old Town you are 30 years too late for the really interesting shops in my view. Avoid Princes Street like the plague, George Street is somewhat better (but turning into endless restaurents and cafes). If you are into shoes, try Pam Jenkins in Thistle Street. As Cornflower says, let us weblog readers know what sort of thiing interests you and we'll all be happy to help! A good shop, for interior design, and to be found in both Edinburgh and Glasgow is In House. Hops around from time to time but is currenty located in Howe Street (recommended street by Cornflower).

Hope you have a great time!


I'm so sad about the changes at Jenners. I used to love that store.


You'll just have to come again, Ruth!


You are right, Pamela, poor old Jenners is a shadow of its former self.


Gosh, you haven't been to Edinburgh in a while - it's been the Balmoral for years and years. And I agree with your disdain for the name change - but "North briton" or "North british" is an old fashioned phrase now (the Scots don't like it) and it disna attract the towrists.

Dark Puss

Oh I have been many times since the name change, which I was well aware of! My comment was intended to be "tongue in cheek" but perhaps comes across as more "foot in mouth"! I think many of the current (or former) citizens of Edinburgh, Scots or not, are not happy to lose the name of a famous landmark. Geography was not my strongest subject at School, but even I know that Balmoral isn't within 100 km of Edinburgh. If you are going to change the name you might chose one with a genuine association to the City. Perhaps the "Walter Scott" might have been a better choice - and yes I do know that there is a Tea Room of that name in Edinburgh.

Dark Puss

Princes Street started to go down hill with the loss of "Binns" (you met your friends, sweetheart under its clock) and then "Forsyth" being eaten up by "House of Fraser". When "Jenners" lost its independence the street became uniformly dreadful.

Dark Puss

Really ???


Oh, Binns corner was the place! And yes, the great, the exclusive R.W. Forsyth now houses the ghastliness that is Topshop, and in Jenners, salesmen barely let a person set foot in the door before thrusting gel-filled heating pad things at them in an ill-advised and unwelcome attempt to get custom. O me miserum!

Dark Puss

Let us weep quietly together for what is lost.


Thank you for the references. Some good ideas, esp. the bookstore as my two grandchildren will with me, as well as two sons and a DIL! We will go the to Castle, but always interested in other places of interest and you have surely provided many. All of us love history, esp GKs.

As DIL and I are knitters, I had already planned to visit K1 Yarns!

Again, many thanks for the links.


Thanks, Dark Puss. It has been (sadly) 26 years since I was last in Edinburgh, so I am prepared for changes. I appreciate your ideas. As I mentioned to Cornflower in my reply to her, my family (2 adult sons, a DIL and 2 grands) and I love history. So while some shopping will be in the mix, the historical sights will be the primary focus of the trip.


I wish! My long-departed Grandfather was originally from Glasgow, but I've not been there since I was a tot. Maybe on another trip.


I have been following your lovely blogs for some time now and just wanted to say 'hello!'.
Thank you for sharing the beautiful pictures of George Street. I visited Edinburgh only once a few years ago in early December and loved it. I also adore reading McCall Smith's Scotland Street books as they always take me back there. I hope to return one day soon :-)


Don't for get K1


The Scott memorial is one of my favourite things. It's the first thing I saw on my first visit many years ago. Thanks for the photos.


This post made me laugh: my mom hates shopping too. . . Maybe if she'd had a camera (and such a view!) to distract her, my childhood wardrobe might have been more ample!


I hope you manage a return trip before long, Cristina!

Julie Fredericksen

I don't know what tat means but from your description I can just imagine. Those scenes are far prettier than what you'd get photographing our mall.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)

Please note

  • Sidebar book cover thumbnail pictures are affiliate links to Amazon, and the storefront links to Blackwell's and The Book Depository are also affiliated; should you purchase a book directly through those links, I will receive a small commission. Older posts may also contain affiliate links to one of those bookshops. I am not paid to produce content and all opinions are my own.


The Great Tapestry of Scotland

  • 1914-1918 War
    Pictures from the stitchers' preview

A request

  • If you wish to use any original images or content from this site, please contact me.

Places to visit

The Book Depository

  • Free Delivery on all Books at the Book Depository

Art and Architecture

Knitting and other crafts

Cornflower Book Group: read