In addition to its setting and historic attractions that draw tourists, Edinburgh has also become a leading European centre for business, education and finance. In fact, after London, it's the most important of the UK's financial centres.
The city is more conservative than other urban areas in Scotland, but it still offers plenty of stimulation for visitors.
It is the centre of Scottish culture and history, and home to numerous, significant museums and art galleries. There's an active theatre scene and a year-round calendar of well-established events and festivals.
Edinburgh is a UNESCO World Heritage site, largely owing to its combination of historical attractions including its 12th century castle, medieval Old Town and 18th century Georgian-style New Town.
Visitors will find large expanses of green space in the city's gardens and parks as well.
Edinburgh sees most of its tourists in the summertime, from July to September, and especially in August during the internationally-famous Edinburgh Festival.
Running concurrently with the mainstream festival are the Fringe Festival and the Book, Film and Jazz festivals, which are equally as popular. This is the most crowded time of the year for the city and accommodation options are often booked months in advance.
Edinburgh offers a complete range of chain hotels and deluxe accommodation options, but it's important to book well in advance if you're planning a summer visit.
The other popular time to visit is around New Year, when all of Scotland celebrates elaborately during the traditional Hogmanay Festival.
For those seeking a quieter time and easier access to attractions and eateries, the spring and autumn are a good choice.