Curving, charming Victoria Street runs from the Royal Mile to Grassmarket, the old herb market. This fun shopping district is full of small artisan shops with brightly coloured facades, offering the city's best tartans, cashmere, and designer brands. You can also come across some exhibition venues, including The Red Door Gallery, specialising in posters and prints by Scottish artists. Pubs punctuate this postcard setting.
The joyful atmosphere extends to the old marketplace at the foot of the castle, with its many cafés and vintage shops. Don't miss the Fabhatrix designer hats, prehistoric items at Mr. Wood's Fossils or a leather jacket at Armstrongs Vintage Emporium, second-hand clothes shop since 1840. Forget the traces of the past—Grassmarket was once the site of public executions—because this painful period has now given way to one of sparkling vitality.