Greyfriars Bobby's Statue, Edinburgh

Greyfriars Bobby's Statue, Edinburgh (must see)

Everyone loves a nice, weepy story about love and loyalty, especially if there is an animal involved! In Edinburgh, the people have erected a statue to their favourite four-legged hero and you will find the Greyfriars Bobby's Statue at the south end of the George IV Bridge.

The beginning of Bobby’s history is a little vague: he was either a policeman’s dog or a stray adopted by a “bobby” on his rounds, which would account for his name. The policeman’s name was John Grey and he kept Bobby for two years before dying of tuberculosis in 1858.

Whether Grey lived alone or whether his widow kicked Bobby out after his master’s death, isn’t clear; but the little Skye Terrier found himself without a home, so he made one for himself – on his master’s grave in Greyfriars Kirkyard, where he stayed for the next fourteen years until his death.

Usually, dogs aren’t welcome in churchyards, but the curator took pity on him and fed him. Other people also gave him food and William Chambers, the Lord Provost of Edinburgh paid every year for his dog license, without which he would have been destroyed as a stray.

When he died, Bobby wasn’t allowed to be buried on consecrated ground, so he was buried beside the Greyfriars Kirkyard gate. One of the rich ladies of the city had the memorial erected in his name with a double fountain below his statue – the upper one for humans, the lower for animals.

Many versions of the story exist, and a lot of books and films have been made about him. The race of the dog often changes, but Bobby’s character remains the same – a dog who remained loyal to his master beyond the grave.

Tip:
Visit the Greyfriars Kirkyard behind the statue for some incredibly interesting local history and if you're a Harry Potter fan, you can find Lord Voldemort's gravestone!

This sight is featured in a self-guided walking tour of Edinburgh, Scotland within the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" which can be downloaded from iTunes App Store or Google Play. Please download the app to your mobile phone or tablet for travel directions for visiting this sight. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Greyfriars Bobby's Statue on Map

Sight Name: Greyfriars Bobby's Statue
Sight Location: Edinburgh, Scotland
Sight Type: Attraction/Landmark
Guide(s) containing this sight: Old Town Walking Tour   City Orientation Walk  

Walking Tours in Edinburgh, Scotland

Create Your Own Walk in Edinburgh

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Royal Mile Walking Tour

Royal Mile Walking Tour

The Royal Mile is not in fact a street, but the name given to a succession of streets forming a thoroughfare at the heart of Edinburgh's Old Town. The thoroughfare is about a mile long and runs between the famed Edinburgh Castle and the Holyrood Palace. The Mile is home to the Courts, St. Giles Cathedral, the City Chambers, John Knox's house, and also numerous shops and restaurants. Take...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 0.9 km
Museums & Galleries, Old Town

Museums & Galleries, Old Town

Popular for its rich cultural heritage, Edinburgh attracts a large number of tourists towards its numerous history and science museums that tell the compelling story of Scotland. Edinburgh is also a city where many locals spend their free time visiting galleries and attending art events. You can find amazing collections of original artwork in the many exhibitions around town. Take this tour and...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.2 km
Kids Entertainment Tour

Kids Entertainment Tour

Edinburgh is a city with a thousand and one things for children to enjoy. There are many sources of amusement for children of all ages, from tots to teens, such as playgrounds, toy stores, children's museums, sweet-shops, and wonderful ice cream stores to keep them happy. Take this tour and discover the best kids entertainment venues in Edinburgh!

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.8 km
City Orientation Walk

City Orientation Walk

Comfortably yet tightly packed on the hilly terrain, Edinburgh – the Scottish capital – is a picturesque city much popular with tourists, in large part, due to its unique architecture comprising medieval (Old Town) and elegant Georgian (New Town) buildings. The cityscape is dominated by Edinburgh Castle, once the seat of the Scottish royals and now home to the country's crown jewels. To...  view more

Tour Duration: 3 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.3 km
Cannongate Walking Tour

Cannongate Walking Tour

The Canongate district takes its name from the main street called the "Canongate" and forms the lower, eastern half of the Royal Mile in Edinburgh's historic Old Town. It contains some other notable public buildings, including Huntly House (now the Museum of Edinburgh) and the historic Canongate Tolbooth (now housing the People's Story Museum), as well as the Canongate Kirk and...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.0 km
Souvenir Shopping

Souvenir Shopping

It would be a pity to leave Edinburgh without having explored its specialty shops and bringing home something truly original. We've compiled a list of gifts and souvenirs, which are unique to Edinburgh, that a visitor might like to purchase to reflect their visit.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.7 km

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