Edinburgh New Town

Edinburgh New Town is said to be a masterpiece of city planning, it was built in stages between 1767 and 1850, it still has much of its neo-classical and Georgian period architecture, the most famous street in the New Town is Princes Street, facing Edinburgh Castle and the Old town.

In January 1766 there was a competition held to see what the best new modern layout would be for the new suburb, the winner of the competition was a 26 year old man called James Craig, Craig’s original plan has been lost but it has been indicated on a map published by John Laurie in 1766. Both Princes Street and Queen Street are both double sided in the published map.

Street Names

  • George Street.
  • Queen Street.
  • Prince’s Street.
  • Castle Street.
  • Frederick Street.
  • Hanover Street.
  • George’s Square.
  • St Andrew’s Square.


James Craig’s proposal hit a few problems along the way, one such problem was the exposed new site was unpopular, leading to the premium of £20 to the first builder on site, this offer was received by a man named John Young, this man went on to build Thistle Street Court, this was the first buildings to go up in Edinburgh New Town at the East of Thistle Street in 1767.

The completion of Charlotte Square was the mark of the First New Town being completed in 1820, this street was built to the design of Robert Adam and was the only architecturally unified section of the New Town, Robert Adam was also the designer of St. George’s Church which was then superseded by Robert Reid.

Since Devolution in Scotland was introduced Bute House is now residence of the First Minister of Scotland.

If you would like to know more about Edinburgh’s New Town try the Wiki https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Town,_Edinburgh or if you would like to take one of our tours that will take you to Edinburgh New Town and other sites in Edinburgh come to our tours page https://eoscs.co.uk/car-tours-of-scotland/

To find out more about the attractions and places to see we have created a list to help you decide on some the best that Edinburgh has to offer Edinburgh Tourist Attractions.

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