The first thing in the Cathedral that catches your attention is the blue nave roof. What could be interpreted as a symbol of Scotland, is supposed to be celestial blue and represents Heaven. Saint Giles’ Cathedral is the Mother Church of Presbyterianism, but it is much older than the Reformation.
It originally dates back to the 12th century, but the church was rebuilt in a Gothic style in the 14th to 16th century. Later, there was a lot of reconstruction, which is represented pretty well by a sketch in the “Short Guide to St. Giles’ Cathedral”. Even if this drawing is interesting, paying £1 for the brochure is not worth it. Apart from the design, you find most of the information online. They also sell a bigger guide book for £6. It does not add much information to the homepage, but the spectacular photographs legitimate the price.
Although having a strange form due to the many reconstructions, the Cathedral itself is beautiful, especially the stained-glass windows and the right-hand chapels. If you are staying in the city for longer, go to one of the concerts offered in the church – the acoustic is excellent.
Insider tip: Check out the website for extra activities, like Family Fun, concerts from groups all over the world or Gaelic lessons.