on April 4, 2009
The first day we tried to go to Holyroodhouse, we were so disappointed to find that there was an emissary from the Queen in residence and the palace was therefore closed to the public. Luckily, we were in town for 2 weeks and the emissary would be gone by the last day we were there. Holyrood Palace, home of the Queen when she visits Scotland, is also where Mary, Queen of Scots, lived when she was queen in the late 1500's. We visited the newer State Rooms, where the present Queen entertains dignitaries and also the quarters of Mary, Queen of Scots, in the older section of the building. Afterwards we saw the old Abbey, founded in 1128 by the Augustinians, now in ruins. The buildings are surrounded by beautiful gardens. Holyrood is situated near Arthur's Seat, a huge hill formed by a now extinct volcano, a dramatic setting. Across the way is the ugly new Parliament Building.
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