Corstorphine Edinburgh

Corstorphine Edinburgh or Crosstorphyn was once a small village between hills Corstorphine hill and the Pentland Hills a famous site mentioned in Robert Louis Stevenson’s novel Kidnapped, where the two main characters stopped for a rest on the way to Killiecrankie (“The rest and be thankful”). The first noted owners of the lands were Thomas de Marshal and Robert de la Roche in 1296. The Forrester family were associated with the Corstorphine area for over 300 years circa 1377 – 1698 when sold to the Wallace family. It was then sold to the Dick’s of Prestonfield a wealthy and powerful family that owned lands all over. Corstorphine was named the Barony of Corstorphine in 1431. There is still remnants of where the Forrester’s lived in a dovecot, which belong to the Castle. No remains of the castle are left to be seen. The Castle was surrounded to the south and east by Corstorphine loch and residents would have to use a boat to get supplies from Colt bridge area. The area around Corstorphine was flat with lochs and marshland and was used for grazing cattle and sheep, which gave the area the notable first mentions of the drink Corstorphine Cream circa 1740. Corstorphine was the first place the making of cream had been heard of. In the Corstorphine Kirk is a tomb and effigies of Sir John Forrester and his first wife Jean Sinclair and Marian Stewart his 2nd wife from circa 1445. Corstorphine became a part of Edinburgh in 1920.

Corstorphine Hill Corstorphine Edinburgh

Corstorphine Hill is Edinburgh’s largest public park and nature reserve. The hill at 531 feet (161m) is a great place for a day out and ramble, there is a variety of wildlife on Corstorphine Hill including great spotted woodpecker, tawny owl, badger, kestrel, and sparrow hawk. At the summit of the Corstorphine Hill is the Clermiston Tower also known as the Scott Tower or the Corstorphine Hill Tower. It is a memorial to Edinburgh’s romantic novelist Sir Walter Scott. The tower was built by William Mackie in 1871 on the centenary of Sir Walter Scott’s birth. From the parapet at the top the views of the surrounding area are stunning. This was a place Sir Walter Scott would visit and contemplate his scriptures.     


Corstorphine Tower Corstorphine Hill Edinburgh  Corstorphine Hill Tower Plaque

Corstorphine Hill Walled Garden

The Corstorphine Hill walled garden has been restored by a local volunteer group. They have created a quiet space to sit and relax or read a book.

Corstorphine Hill Walled Garden

Edinburgh Zoo

Edinburgh Zoo is in the west of Edinburgh, on the main route from the airport. Edinburgh Zoo was opened to the public on 22 July 1913. The Royal Zoological Society of Scotland was founded in 1909 probably best known throughout the world for their Penguins. The Penguins were first brought to Edinburgh  by the whaling ships that would call in at Leith. The association with these amazing birds began in January 1903. There are over 180 different animal species in the zoo the most popular are a pair of giant pandas from China.

Scottish Zoological Park Corstorphine  Edinburgh Zoo entrance Corstorphine Road  Edinburgh Zoo iconic Sign

The Famous Edinburgh Penguins and Edinburgh Pandas 

    Edinburgh Zoo Pandas Corstorphine Edinburgh Edinburgh Zoo Corstorphine Edinburgh

Edinburgh Zoo Animals and Mammals 

Edinburgh Zoo Zebra Corstorphine Edinburgh Edinburgh Zoo Hippopotamus Corstorphine Edinburgh Edinburgh Zoo Otters Corstorphine Edinburgh

Edinburgh Zoo Chimpanzees Corstorphine Edinburgh

Corstorphine Village

Old Corstorphine Parish Church

Old Corstorphine Parish Church is one of the oldest churches in Edinburgh with history gong back to 1380 when a chancel was first built of which parts still remain. The first Chapel in Corstorphine was linked to the Abbey of Holyrood in 1128. The chapel is no more and the present Chapel which was enlarged in 1429 in the form of a Jerusalem Cross is on the same site. In the Church is the founders tomb Sir John Forrester. Also tombs of his two sons John and Alexander. In 1589 Corstorphine church became a parish church with its first minister being John Nimmill.  There are stain glass windows which are of biblical scenes and other relics of ancient heritage. 

 Old Corstorphine Parish Church

Old Corstorphine Parish Church Old Corstorphine Parish Church

Ye Olde Oakland Inn


Corstorphine Public Library


Ye Old Library


Corstorphine Do’cot

This is a fine example of a Do’cot which served the main house or castle with fresh meat and eggs. The young pigeons would be eaten as they were the most tender. This Do’cot had over 1000 nesting boxes. Corstorphine Castle was the home of the Forrester family, Lairds of Corstorphine from 1376 – 1698. The Castle was destroyed and finally demolished in 1797 when a horde of god was found. The Do’cot is all that remains of the Castle buildings.


Gibson’s Lodge (The Dower House)

The Dower House is found in St Margaret’s Park in the centre of Old Corstorphine Village. The park area previously being a market garden. The Dower House of the Forrester family was built circa 1665.  



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