Edinburgh is the capital city, and second largest city of Scotland (overtaken by Glasgow as Scotland's largest city in 1821). It combines medieval relics, Georgian grandeur and modern life with contemporary avant-garde. The Old and New Towns of Edinburgh were listed as World Heritage Sites by UNESCO in 1995.
Edinburgh has both a cosmopolitan and uniquely Scottish atmosphere and is known as the literary capital of the English-speaking world. The great historical novelist Sir Walter Scott was born in the city as well as Robert Louis Stevenson and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.
General admission to major museums in Edinburgh is generally free. Most museums are situated in the Old Town including the large National Museum of Scotland, the People's Story Museum and the Museum of Childhood. Major galleries include the National Gallery of Scotland, The Scottish National Portrait Gallery in the New Town and the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art situated in West Edinburgh. Major tourist sites in Old Town include Edinburgh Castle at the West end of Royal Mile, a street with many shops and the Scottish Parliament and the Palace of Holyroodhouse situated at the East end.
There are 36 museums in Edinburgh.
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