Visiting Edinburgh’s seaside- Seafield, Portobello, Joppa

The car had been booked in for a service, so Shadow and I went out to drop it off and visit his old pre-adoption part of Edinburgh, Seafield. My previous experiences in the area have mostly been running or geology-related. Running-wise, Jenna and I took part in the Portobello Running Club (PRC) race here a few years back. One of the Alternative Carnethy 5 races took place across the sands and groynes here a few years ago. Geologically, Joppa has fine exposures of Carboniferous rock of national importance.

The walk gave me the chance to do some thinking about a couple of walks I’ve had under consideration for some time and get a few photos along the way.


The path down to the sea. EDCH is to the right

Shadow and I took advantage of the circular route that formed the basis of the PRC race I took part in, which passes beside Edinburgh Dog and Cat Home, where he was well-looked after before we adopted him last year.

The one walk I have been thinking of is a slight variation and extension of the East Lothian section of the John Muir Way but inspired by Robert Louis Stevenson’s ‘Catriona’, specifically Davie and Alan’s journey from Stockbridge to take ship near Fidra. This involves walking through what were once the villages of Broughton and Picardy, now major urban areas, out to Lochend and then onwards to the coast and down to Yellowcraigs via the battlefield viewpoint at Prestonpans.


Looking eastwards along the coast that Davie and Alan follow in ‘Catriona’. North Berwick Law can be seen in the distance.

Shadow and I promenaded upon the prom down to Joppa and then turned back along the High Street to carry out my other task for the day. To get some photos of Shrub Mount, Hugh Miller’s final Edinburgh home and private geological museum between 1854 and 1856. After having a look at some more intact architecture, we eventually located Shrub Mount, complete with discrete, not even blue, plaque.

Photos were taken, a liver cake was bought for Shadow at Crumbs, one of the many elements that makes Portobello a contender for Scotland’s most dog-friendly place. Then we then headed back to pick up the car, which was in itself a novel experience. I’ve never been to a dealer service centre. They had a bowl of water for Shadow. They had comfy sofas, which Shadow had to be restrained from taking up residence upon. There was a proper coffee maker, instead of the machine. A wee extra treat for me our coastal nanoadventure.


I am a palaeobiologist in my early 40's carrying out research work. I am based in Scotland.

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Posted in Geodiversity, Geological Walks (urban), Scotland

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