Scott Monument
Scott Monument
4.5
Points of Interest & LandmarksMonuments & Statues
10:00 - 15:30
Monday
10:00 - 15:30
Tuesday
10:00 - 15:30
Wednesday
10:00 - 15:30
Thursday
10:00 - 15:30
Friday
10:00 - 15:30
Saturday
10:00 - 15:30
Sunday
10:00 - 15:30
About
A 200-foot spire dedicated to Sir Walter Scott, the famous Scottish poet.
Duration: < 1 hour
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The area
Address
Neighbourhood: Old Town
Few Edinburghers live in the Old Town, but its labyrinth of dank alleys and steep streets suggests this was not always the case. Today, it’s mostly visitors, tartan-flavoured souvenir shops, and pipers that you’ll find on its cobbled streets. This is the place to get a feel for Auld Reekie (Old Smelly), as the town was once nicknamed, and stroll the Royal Mile, the thoroughfare that links the castle with the royal palace – two of Edinburgh’s great set-piece attractions. But there’s lots more exploring to do here down dozens of little alleys, or wynds, while at night the city’s busiest clubs erupt along the Cowgate which is closed to traffic for this purpose.
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  • RiSha
    London, United Kingdom519 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Amazing!
    Came here recently during my visit to Edinburgh. Very impressive structure, which made for a great photo opportunity! It was cool to learn about the history of one of the main landmarks of Edinburgh - a must-see if you're visiting the city!
    Visited July 2023
    Written 20 July 2023
  • s7mps
    Leicester, United Kingdom164 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Top the lot great Scott...
    Fantastic opportunity to go up inside Scotts Monument and climb up the 221 steps to the level.3 viewing area. Great knowledgeable guides. Very narrow spiral staircases and fantastic views from the top..
    Visited September 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 14 September 2023
  • Mr.S Travel Quest
    San Angelo, Texas204 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Edinburgh's Vertical Marvel: The Scott Monument Experience
    The Scott Monument stands at an impressive 200 feet and 6 inches (61.1 meters) tall, making it the largest monument to a writer in the world. Visitors can climb a narrow spiral staircase with 287 steps to reach the top of the monument, where they are rewarded with breathtaking panoramic views of Edinburgh.You can't miss it when visiting Edinburgh. When your done, visit Princes Street Garden. It's right next to this amazing monument. Check out our Edinburgh video on Mr.S Travel Quest to learn more about this amazing monument. Mr.S Travel Quest
    Visited June 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 25 November 2023
  • The Trusty Trip Gal!
    England, United Kingdom243 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Stunning Monument And Great To Climb!
    The Scott Monument is absolutely stunning! It sits on Princes Street right in the heart of Edinburgh! I have visited Edinburgh many times from when I was young! I have climbed it twice and the view from the top is stunning! The stairs do get narrow towards the top but that is because it is a very old monument! If you don’t want to climb make sure you have a walk around the monument and admire it’s beauty from the bottom!
    Visited November 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 26 November 2023
  • Josue C
    New Haven, Connecticut509 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Poetic Monument!
    At 200 feet high, Scott Monument is pretty hard to miss. Dedicated to Sir Walter Scott and to all the poets and writers of Scotland. The monument looks like a spire found at a cathedral, high and elaborate. Sir Walter Scott's statue is located under the arches that hold the spire, just an awe inspiring site. This is one of those things that you do when visiting Edinburgh, it's beautiful and you can see it quickly. So if you're visiting Edinburgh stop by and see it for your self.
    Visited April 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 5 December 2023
  • alibatty🦇
    Dundee, United Kingdom18,500 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Iconic Edinburgh Landmark
    This Victorian Gothic monument of over 200 ft is an honorary memorial to one of Scotland’s best-known writers, Sir Walter Scott , and it dominates Princes Street Gardens. It’s the largest memorial in the world to a writer, and is decorated by 68 carved figures in niches , of characters from Scott’s novels. The designer was George Meikle Kemp , whose design was selected by judges in a competition , and it opened in 1848. There are 4 platforms from the base to the top, with 287 narrow steps. It appeared to be barricaded off when we were there ( but I had no intention of climbing it again anyway, having done it as a teenager.) At the base of the monument is a statue of Walter Scott with his dog Maida, sculpted by Sir John Steele from Carrara marble. You simply couldn’t miss it as a visitor to Edinburgh.
    Visited March 2024
    Travelled with family
    Written 3 March 2024
  • 873baljinderb
    Coventry, United Kingdom252 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Magnificent building
    A grand victorian, monument in gothic style. We were struck by the size and how imposing it was. Great place to take photographs and go for a stroll. Plenty of places to buy a coffee and take in the view.
    Visited March 2024
    Travelled with family
    Written 27 March 2024
  • Farmer P
    10 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Loved the Scott monument!
    We had a great visit to the Scott monument. Our guide, Mark, was enthusiastic, informative, genuine, and funny! I could have listened to him all day. We got to go up inside this remarkable structure and admire the view and learned a bit about the history of the monument and the life of Sir Walter Scott. Zero regrets and would highly recommend!
    Visited May 2024
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 15 May 2024
  • Sara G.
    Saint Louis, Missouri537 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Beautiful Part of Edinburgh’s Skyline
    This was my favorite monument in Edinburgh. Sir Walter Scott was an author and his Gothic monument is towering and beautiful. The British government passed the Dress Act in 1776 to suppress the Jacobites (supporters of James II for the British Crown) Rebellion and abolish Highland Dress of Bagpipes, Tartans and Kilts. It was also used to break up the clan system in the Highlands of Scotland. Sir Walter Scott was a big proponent of bringing back the traditions of the Highlands — the bagpipes, the tartans, the kilts.
    Visited May 2024
    Travelled with friends
    Written 1 June 2024
  • Darren D
    Texas813 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Classy memorial
    The first "big" novel I read was when I was 14 years old, and it was Ivanhoe. I remembered reading slowly so that I could picture every castle, banner, etc. just as Sir Walter Scott described it. It was magical. It was special for me to visit the Scott Monument 40 years later. It is an enormous Victorian memorial in which one can climb the many steps to the top.
    Visited June 2024
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 29 June 2024
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4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles2,801 reviews
Excellent
1,402
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1,084
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270
Poor
27
Terrible
18

Nicola D
Hessle, UK3,080 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2020
This amazing 200 ft plus Victorian gothic monumental spire is situated at the heart of Princes Street in the New Town and is dedicated to the famous poet and author Sir Walter Scott. It is a truly amazing structure in Princes Street Gardens, opposite the famous Jenners department store and the Waverley hotel (where we stayed – our room overlooked the impressive structure). It is close to Waverley Station (which is named after Scott’s Waverley novels). It is lit up at night and towers over the gardens. You can have a tour and climb to the top as there is a spiral staircase (287 steps) inside giving access to several viewing platforms on different levels. The tour costs £8 for adults. Sadly on this occasion we did not have time to climb it but definitely next time....
Written 19 March 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Anu
United Kingdom909 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020 • Family
Wonderful gothic structure monument sitting in the heart of Edinburgh City centre, next to Waverley Train station and Princes street garden east.

This stunning building features a white Carrara marble statue of the author Sir Walter Scott and his loyal, beloved hound Maida.

The story of the monument with a small museum room, you can find information on the life and works of Sir Walter Scott and beautiful stained glass windows.

As you climb higher, the spiral staircase becomes narrower. The panoramic views from the top is spectacular.
Written 28 February 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

johnhouston2
Knaresborough, UK5,228 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2020 • Couples
Although the monument is currently closed due to Covid restrictions, it is well worth a view from the outside. Constructed in 1840 this unique and attractive Victorian Gothic monument is an intrinsic part of Edinburgh’s fabulous skyline.

At a height of 200 feet this monument is the second largest monument to a writer in the world (the largest is in Cuba) and is well worth a visit.
Written 14 November 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Brian T
London, UK8,048 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2022 • Solo
Author Charles Dickens wasn’t too wrong when he described this famous Edinburgh landmark with the words: ‘…like the spire of a Gothic church taken off and stuck in the ground'. It actually does look a bit like that! Whether you like it or hate it for its design, you can’t miss it as you wander through Edinburgh, and you should give the Scott Monument a closer inspection.

Inaugurated in 1846, Scott Monument is a Gothic monument built in honour of the Scottish writer Sir Walter Scott.  The tower, on Princes Street, is blackish in colour giving it an eerie beauty and helping it to stand out in the Princes Street Gardens and wider urban landscape in which it sits.

Sitting proudly at the base of the monument is Sir Walter himself, carved in gleaming white Carrara marble by Sir John Steell. This monumental statue, fashioned from a single piece of marble weighing 30 tons, took the sculptor six years to complete. It features Scott and his beloved dog Maida, sitting on a platform of huge stone steps. The marble sculpture really shines brightly when the sun is on it, as it was when I visited. It contracts quite dramatically with the grey Binny sandstone from which the monument was constructed, though pollution from the smoke of the city and from the locomotives on the busy rail lines nearby has probably darkened the monument considerably, to the point that it does look a bit dirty.

It’s quite a sight, and you really need to see it close up to see the detail of the 64 statues which are carved into the stone of the monument, and to appreciate the extraordinary craftsmanship which went into the monument’s construction. The detail of the 64 small carvings is quite incredible. Curiously, the figures that have been beautifully carved on the monument are characters which feature in Walter Scott’s novels. It’s a beautiful feature. The Monument stands just over 200 feet high.

Unfortunately the small museum on Scott’s life and works at the base of the monument was closed on the day of my visit, as was the observation deck. I believe these have been closed since the pandemic. When the top of the tower is open, you have to climb 287 spiral steps, divided into four separate sections which allow you to stop for a while and take in the view. Apparently as you ascend further up the spiral staircase, it becomes more and more difficult since the walls get narrower and the stairs become unsteady.  However, I would imagine that the effort would be worthwhile as the views across Edinburgh would be quite unique.

At the time of my visit a small Remembrance Garden was taking place, with remembrance crosses and purple poppies being placed around the monument. It was quite moving.

The monument is certainly worth a visit. Appreciate its whole grandeur from afar, but do get close up to it to appreciate its detail and the intricate work that has gone into its construction. It’s a short walk from Edinburgh Waverley Rail Station, on Princes Street in the heart of Edinburgh’s New Town.
Written 4 November 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Scenic23042120291
Los Angeles, CA4 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2023 • Couples
We paid the admission fee to walk up the Scott Monument. The view from the top is okay, but the tour guides rush you up and down the stairs so quickly that there is barely any time to take photographs or appreciate the view. Go to the observation deck of the National Museum instead since it has a better vantage point and you can stay as long as you want, for free.
Written 11 September 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

1TraveltheWorld
Alice Springs, Australia12,210 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2022
While here during the Edinburgh festival, we passed this glorious monument.

You can climb up to a look out point, but we did not do this part due to the crowds.

The blackness of the stone spire is due to the many hundreds of years of coal pollution from the burning fireplaces of homes staining the outside, just like many other of the sandstone buildings in the city.

Situated just past the rail station and the shopping mall- you can't miss it.
Written 15 March 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Steviefull
Kidderminster, UK1,944 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2020
Unfortunately when we visited the monument was closed due to covid restrictions, which is a shame as I'm sure the views would be most impressive.

Saying that the monument certainly stand out from the outside with its gothic type design.

Will certainly go inside should I find myself in Edinburgh in the future.
Written 25 October 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

alibatty🦇
Dundee, UK18,500 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2024 • Family
This Victorian Gothic monument of over 200 ft is an honorary memorial to one of Scotland’s best-known writers, Sir Walter Scott , and it dominates Princes Street Gardens. It’s the largest memorial in the world to a writer, and is decorated by 68 carved figures in niches , of characters from Scott’s novels. The designer was George Meikle Kemp , whose design was selected by judges in a competition , and it opened in 1848. There are 4 platforms from the base to the top, with 287 narrow steps. It appeared to be barricaded off when we were there ( but I had no intention of climbing it again anyway, having done it as a teenager.) At the base of the monument is a statue of Walter Scott with his dog Maida, sculpted by Sir John Steele from Carrara marble. You simply couldn’t miss it as a visitor to Edinburgh.
Written 3 March 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Josue C
New Haven, CT509 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2023 • Family
At 200 feet high, Scott Monument is pretty hard to miss. Dedicated to Sir Walter Scott and to all the poets and writers of Scotland. The monument looks like a spire found at a cathedral, high and elaborate. Sir Walter Scott's statue is located under the arches that hold the spire, just an awe inspiring site. This is one of those things that you do when visiting Edinburgh, it's beautiful and you can see it quickly. So if you're visiting Edinburgh stop by and see it for your self.
Written 5 December 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

RiSha
London, UK519 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2023
Came here recently during my visit to Edinburgh. Very impressive structure, which made for a great photo opportunity! It was cool to learn about the history of one of the main landmarks of Edinburgh - a must-see if you're visiting the city!
Written 20 July 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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SCOTT MONUMENT: All You MUST Know Before You Go (2024)

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