Surrounding the Water of Leith on the south-west corner of Edinburgh, Colinton is a green, desirable area within easy public transport of the city centre and just as easy driving distance from the city’s gorgeous surroundings. Dating back to the 11th century, this former mill town retains its community spirit as well as many of its old buildings.
These days the area is known for its army barracks and is popular with those seeking a high quality of life away from the city centre, as well as visitors looking for some peace and quiet in Colinton Dell.
Colinton Primary School is a small, welcoming neighbourhood school in the heart of the area. Currently serving 194 children, split into two nurseries and seven classes, the school caters to local children ranging from Primary 1 to Primary 7.
Alternatively, younger children can attend Bonaly Primary school, a popular choice in Colinton and the surrounding areas. Rebuilt in 2008, the school now has a Silver Eco-Schools status and boasts many extra-curricular clubs, including Film & Animation, Karate and, of course, Football.
Older children tend to go to Firrhill High School, where they mix with young people from the surrounding area. In 2005 the school completed a lengthy refurbishment, during which several buildings were demolished and replaced. In 2006 Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Education identified one of the school’s key strengths as “The coherent and progressive programme of enterprise activities from S1-S6”.
Leisure & Amenities
The range of small shops, bars and pubs really adds to the spirit of community and friendly atmosphere in Colinton. The winding main road boasts a selection of independent businesses, including an arts supply shop, an opticians, a florist and a convenience store. You’ll also never be far from the Tesco Superstore on Colinton Mains Drive.
As for pubs and restaurants, there are a surprising amount for such a peaceful area. From Dantes restaurant to the Spylaw Tavern to Tanners Lounge Bar, you’ll always have a choice for a night out. Or if you want to get stuck into the city life, hop on a bus and head to Edinburgh centre.
Colinton also surrounds Kingsknowe Golf Club and is just south of Edinburgh Corn Exchange, a former agricultural hall converted into a popular music and function venue.
But the real reason people love Colinton so much is the range of opportunities on the doorstep. Whether you fancy a relaxing walk up the Water of Leith into town, a game of Frisbee with the family in Spylaw Park, or a more intrepid hike through Bonaly Country Park and the Pentland Hills, Colinton is the perfect base.
As well as having Kingsknowe train station just to the north, the consistently reliable Lothian Buses will take you from Colinton to any other area of Edinburgh. Take the number 10 or 45 into the town centre and then plan your day; catch a tram to Murrayfield, take a train out of town or enjoy a rickshaw ride through old town, it’s up to you.
With such a friendly, peaceful atmosphere and so much on your doorstep, Colinton has done well to retain its old-town aesthetic with the modern world so close by.