Guided Architecture Walking Tour
Guided Tour for the lovers of classical order
Edinburgh New Town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Designed in late 18th century it was the biggest planned town development in the world. Its gridiron plan formed the base for rational, ordered, symmetrical streets of extravagant townhouses and private parks. Neoclassical Georgian architecture is the focus of this guided tour’s itinerary.
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Start outside Register House
Finish near the St Stephen's
Learn the political and social context of the New Town
Learn the history and principles behind the masterplan of the New Town, designed to chime with enlightenment ideas in a graphical form, and glorify the union
Discuss the works of of Robert Adam, William Chambers, William Henry Playfair, and more
Appreciate beautiful ironwork such as streetlights, railings and bootscrapers
Understand the elements of Georgian Neoclassical architecture
Full Description of the New Town Tour
This guided walk offers a good insight into city expansion, social segregation, accommodation typology, infrastructure, conservation and adaptation to the times.
The tour will start near Register House with an introduction of Edinburgh history that influenced the development of the New Town. As we approach the main axis of the area, the group will discover the principles behind the masterplan of the New Town, designed to chime with enlightenment ideas in a graphical form, and glorify the union between Scotland and England.
Your guide will compare the villas by Robert Adam and William Chambers and surprise you with an unexpected ensemble in Thistle Court.
To escape the hustle and bustle of the streets, we will enter the private Queen street gardens to admire the Georgian landscapes.
Around the corner you will discover the allegedly oldest Masonic lodge in the world.
Your guide will explain the typical elements of the New Town such as sunken basements, underground vaults, prolific chimneys, and fanlight windows. As we get up and close with the townhouses, various stone finishes will also be introduced.
Once out of the main boulevard, George street, the group will admire the magnificent palatial facades of Robert Adam’s Charlotte Square and appreciate beautiful ironwork such as streetlights, railings and bootscrapers.
Having explored the gridiron network of the first New Town, the group will enter the Greek Revival crescents of the Moray Estate and learn the true reason behind blind windows in Georgian architecture.
We will complete our itinerary in the most photographed lane in Edinburgh, Circus Mews, previously a service street used only to keep horses and coaches.