• “Definitely worth climbing the 287 stairs to the top for beautiful panoramic views of Edinburgh.” in 7 reviews

  • “This is an amazingly beautiful piece of architecture and it is the largest monument dedicated to a writer.” in 5 reviews

  • “The first deck has an area that is enclosed with wood carvings and stained glass windows and information about Sir Walter Scott.” in 2 reviews

Recommended Reviews

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  • 5.0 star rating

    This is by far a favourite place for me in edi.
    £4 later you will enjoy an amazing view of the city.
    Each level you enter has its own character with a view. You will be able to see Edinburgh castle, Arthur's seat, Nelson monument, the Balmoral, and so much more!
    It will be windy so be careful!
    Don't forget your camera and mind all 287 steps!
    When you come down the man at the desk will give you a certificate that states you climbed the stairs and conquered!
    (You get one at Nelsons monument as well).
    I highly recommend climbing this treasure!
    It is so beautifully made!

  • 3.0 star rating

    The Scott Monument provides some of the prettiest views of Edinburgh and it's a unique piece of architecture that's attractive from the ground as well.  A full 287 steps to the top, the upper staircases are quite narrow so folks who dislike enclosed or steep spaces- and larger people as well- should steer clear of anything beyond the first observation deck.

    The full ascent, some time for photo taking, a look around the on-site history room, and descent can be achieved in an hour or so.

  • 4.0 star rating

    The Scott Monument is a beautiful architectural structure situated in Princes Street Gardens.

    Definitely worth climbing the 287 stairs to the top for beautiful panoramic views of Edinburgh.  The stairs are spiral and narrow so it can be a bit tight with two-way traffic.  There are lookouts along the way if you need to take a break or aren't up to climbing to the top.  The cost is £4.

    I was fortunate to go at a time when it wasn't busy so the minimal two-way traffic was tolerable.  If it was busy, I could see where it would not be enjoyable.

  • 4.0 star rating
    2 check-ins

    £3 and a cold, kinda rainy day makes for a perfect trip up and down this monument.  The views are still pretty great with high clouds AND you get to enjoy it on your own without a bunch of tourists.

    I would never want to visit this place on a busy day.  It was hard enough passing the two groups of people we did....in fact...it was hard enough getting ourselves through those upper stairs!

    Definitely visit here if you're in town - even if only to view it's greatness up close from the grass below.

  • 4.0 star rating
    Listed in Edinburgh

    I don't think I sufficiently appreciate what Sir Walter means to the Scots.  But this is a cool monument.  It looks like the hollowed out spire of a Gothic Cathedral -- if you forgot the Cathedral.

    The monument is 20 stories tall. Climbing the twisty, narrow spiral staircase to the top is very very cool. And it was completed in 1846 -- long before the Washington monument.   (Not sure the insurance company would let tourists scamper up to the top if the monument were in the U.S. It's not for those who suffer from claustrophobia or those with cardiac problems.)

    The view from the top is spectacular.  The guards at the bottom are quite chatty and are delighted to tell you about Walter or anything else for that matter.

    I don't think I would have climbed the 287 steps if my son hadn't wanted to.  Thanks, Jake.  I enjoyed it.

  • 5.0 star rating

    If there's a heaven, Sir Walter Scott must be wandering round beaming from ear to ear.

    Aside from being remembered as one of Scotland's finest writers, he has his own monument on Princes Street. Built in the 1840s, it's a magnificent gothic monument that towers over Princes Street Gardens at an impressive height of two hundred feet. Bill Bryson described it as 'a gothic rocket ship' but to my eye, it looks like a cross between a Louise Bourgeois sculpture and a Tim Burton castle with it's towering spires and black sandstone.

    Open 10am - 4pm in the winter and 10am - 7pm in the summer, it's well worth the cost of £3 admission if you have the nerve and the stamina to climb the spiral staircase to the different viewing platforms.

  • 5.0 star rating

    Simply gorgeous.  A small warning though.  The staircases are quite narrow, so be careful.

  • 5.0 star rating

    Went there 20 years ago.  Only cost 1 pound back then.  It was awesome.  Make sure you find all the different stairs up to the top.  

    Good for kids over age 9.

  • 5.0 star rating

    Only 3 pounds for exercise and some of the most breathtaking views of Edinburgh? Yes please! This is an amazingly beautiful piece of architecture and it is the largest monument dedicated to a writer. There are four observation decks, each one a taste of the view to come. The first level has a small museum? shrine? That is enclosed by gorgeous stained glass windows and wood carvings. There is also encased information about the man himself, Sir Walter Scott and  about the monument.

    Don't be a cry baby, it's only 287 steps to the top!

  • 5.0 star rating

    Like pretty much everyone else I'm astounded that very few locals and visitors to the city ever seem to know that you can climb up this monument. It's almost the best £3 you can spend in the city, second only to a bag of 5 sausage rolls from Piemaker.

    It's far less agonising than the sweaty (but rewarding) trek up Arthur's Seat, and delivers almost as stunning a view from the top. If I'm being totally honest though, I don't find the structure itself particularly striking or memorable. It just looks like a big black carrot.

  • 5.0 star rating
    Listed in Lovely Edinburgh

    287 steps, narrow steps.  Though you don't have to climb all of them, but you might as well.  The view once you reach even the first set of steps is beautiful.  You can see all of Edinburgh and it's lovely buildings, the castle and just the entire city.  The steps are narrow so if you're coming up, people can't be coming down, this can cause a traffic jam, but there's nothing wrong with admiring the view just a little longer. I think it was 3GBP to enter, not pricey at all.

    This is another must do in Edinburgh.

  • 5.0 star rating
    First to Review

    From the outside, you could never guess that there are stairs that virtually lead you to the top of the monument.

    I lived in Edinburgh for a few months and never knew this until I was about to leave.

    Admission was £3.  Check their hours first, from what I remember, they may be closed on certain days or have limited hours.

  • 5.0 star rating

    Multiple people have tried to convince me that the Scott Monument is a spaceship. Why is this? Do I come across that dumb or is it some sort of Edinburgh joke I don't get?

    Having lived in Edinburgh for a number of years, I have to admit I haven't really taken the time to admire this fantastic monument. I had no idea you could climb to the top either. But if you take a few minutes to really admire this beautiful piece of architecture, you will be impressed. Built in the late 1830's as a memorial to the late, great Sir Walter Scott this monument was designed by a joiner. It amazes me how well buildings like these stand the test of time.

    Anyway, you can climb to the top for £3. 278 steps take you there and you will probably feel the burn in your butt when you get to the top. I certainly did anyway. Those of a larger size may find it difficult getting up the narrow staircases, as might those who are claustrophobic. The views at the top are astounding, and it is a tight squeeze. If there are other people there at the same time there will be a lot of squeezing past each other and breathing in.

    It is so worth it though. One of Edinburgh's best attractions.

  • 5.0 star rating

    Must see. only £4 per person so it won't break the bank, but be prepared for some tight and windy stairs. Views from the top are breathtaking!

  • 4.0 star rating

    I too didn't realise you could climb to the top of this monument, but I have passed it numerous times and I have always liked it.

    Situated in close proximity to the train station and right across from Princes Street, this monument is probably one of the most observed in Edinburgh. Built in the 1840's, this statue has certainly weathered well, and I have spent many an hour sitting in the gardens and marvelling up at its sheer size.

    You can read about Scott on the many plaques around the statue, and you are sure to come away feeling you have had a real taste of Edinburgh history.

    One of the nicest attractions in Edinburgh, and best of all, free to look at! (Admissions to the monument £3)

  • 4.0 star rating

    I wouldnt be suprised if you walked past Sir Walter Scott's Monument, and had no idea of the secrets it holds inside. Yes, from the outside it is mighty impressive - an example of great architecture and planning, and mostly something that you can stare at each time you pass it and something new will catch your eye.

    However, the monuments real secrets lie behind a tiny door at the rear of the base - a set of stairs that, for £3, will take you up the center of the 150 year old building to an observation area at the top. The stairs are steep and narrow, but the climb is worth it - the view at the top is sublime, a massive panoramic view of Edinburgh for as far as the eye can see. Amazing.

    Oh, and for those who dont know why Sir Walter Scott's Monument is called a rocket, it's because it looks a lot like Thunderbird 3 - only made out of stone and without strings.

  • 3.0 star rating

    The Sir Walter Scott Monument: The ultimate ass toning machine.

    The sheer scale of the monument entails a brutal gluteus sculpting climb to the top. Once at the peak you'll have a great view at your disposal as well as a great alternative to liposuction.

    Only £3 too.

  • 5.0 star rating

    Standing tall above the city, the Walter Scott Monument is one of the main touristy things to do on Princes Street. Although it looks dirty, the architecture is breath-taking. The dark stuff on it is oil - if you're interested (I learnt that from a bus tour!).
    To save you about 10 minutes circling the building, the door is round the back of the monument. You're welcome.

    When you're in you have to climb quite a big set of stairs to get to the top.  If you're claustrophobic then maybe it's not for you, because the stairs are windy and narrow. When you get to the top though it's well worth the trip. Some of the best views of the city are found up here.
    Definitely worth a visit.

  • 5.0 star rating

    The Sir Walter Scott Monument is by far my favourite visitor attraction in Edinburgh. I first climbed the stairs a few years ago. It boasts the best view of Edinburgh and they weren't joking. 360 degrees, panoramic view of all the postcard sites that will be familiar when you talk of Edinburgh.

    3 quid admission is an absolute bargain. The stone masonry alone is beautiful and finished to a seriously high standard. A timeless structure in an ever changing city.

    My favourite part of the monument is the graffiti etched in the stone on the viewing platform. While I am certainly not condoning such an action nor have I donned my house key to scratch my undying love for the girlfriend on the weather-beaten stone, many have, and I could spend hours reading all the testimonies and displays of affection. Simply beautiful

  • 5.0 star rating

    This is an absolute must do for anyone in Edinburgh whether you are a tourist or not. A lot of the attractions in this city can be kind of expensive so it's refreshing that this on only sets you back £3.

    I was really surprised at how high it is. From the ground it is deceiving, it doesn't looks as though its big enough to ft people in or tall enough to have views worth the climb! I was wrong on both counts.

    It can be a bit of a scary climb when you get nearer the top. As the monument gets narrower the stairs get more cramped and when I was there we got stuck in congestion which wasn't great. Walking through the door at the top into the fresh air was a relief and the climb was forgotten. The views from every level are second to none.

  • 5.0 star rating

    This is an awesome monument! A beautiful structure with four decks so you can enjoy the view while you take a break between all the stairs you have to climb. The first deck has an area that is enclosed with wood carvings and stained glass windows and information about Sir Walter Scott. The top of the monument has an incredible view of Edinburgh and well worth all the steps you climb to get there. Also, the staircases are very narrow and can be a bit difficult when people are going up the stairs while people are going down. The very top staircase is the most narrow, so much that I don't see how anyone could get past another person. So when climbing up and down try to give a warning for the people on the next floor, that way you don't get jammed.

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