Scotland, Day Five – Stirling, The Wallace Monument, Edinburgh

Wednesday, May 29

We hiked up Abbey Craig to visit the Wallace Monument, the memorial for William Wallace, aka Braveheart.

Wallace Monument

Patches of bluebells,

Bluebells on Abbey Craig

And wild garlic grow under the canopy of trees.

Wild Garlic on Abbey Craig

The Wallace coat of arms hangs over the entryway.

Wallace Coat of Arms

And a statue of Braveheart is installed on the corner of the monument.

Wallace Statue

I’m thinking there was some artistic license taken when they cast Mel Gibson in the role.

The monument also houses memorials of other important Scots, notably the economist Adam Smith.

Adam Smith

I accidentally ended up walking to the top of the monument. There were exhibits on each successive floor of the monument so I kept trudging higher and higher. The second-worst part was the spiral stairwell, which looks like it’s kind of glued onto the outside of the structure,

The Wallace Monument, Stirling

Photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons

had giant openings on the sides I could practically fall through. Okay, so maybe they weren’t quite that large but it was pretty drafty. It took a major effort to climb almost to the top. I managed a quick snap through one of the crenellations,

Crenellation Wallace Monument

Then I turned the corner and found that it opened right up to nothing but air and it was over and done with for me.

Wallace Monument (HDR) (8038771807)

Photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons

I beat a hasty retreat down a floor until Jim finished sightseeing and then we made the trek back down to ground level.

We spent the afternoon exploring Stirling Castle where we got to see tapestries being woven just as they were 600 years ago. There’s an interesting video here.

We had a little lunch and then got on the road to the final destination, Edinburgh. Rather than try to find parking for two days, we checked into the hotel and then drove back out to the airport to drop off the rental car. We hopped on a the AirLink, a double-decker bus and rode back into town. The two-story buses seem to be a popular mode of transport.

Double Decker Bus

We strolled around town for a bit before supper and came across this busker with his assistant, a droopy lab holding a hat out for tips. (Some of us have a soft spot for dogs, apparently.)

Labrador Busker


One thought on “Scotland, Day Five – Stirling, The Wallace Monument, Edinburgh

  1. Anonymous

    I love that you “accidentally” walked to the top! Could’t quite understand the relationship of the spiky topped thing in the first photograph, and the Wiki photo of inside the top, so I looked up other images of the Wallace Monument, and wow, the way it is sited is really something. I think I would have accidentally walked to the top, too, just to get a sense of that – though someone would have had to hold on to me tightly before I looked out. I watched the video of the weavers, and am glad I stayed with it all the way through, because I did have a sense of why the work is exciting. Thanks : )


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