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Would you believe that Dean Village used to be known as one of the city’s slums?
The Village of the Water of Leith was once home to eight working grain mills, most notably flour mills owned by the Baxters. There was also a distillery and a skin factory.
After some investment, this picturesque urban escape now resembles a bit of Germany or Brugge.
This is a hot spot for photographers in Edinburgh who enjoy documenting the mix of architectural style and changing light in the heart of Dean Village and its valley.
Looking for today’s Leith? Here’s our guide to Edinburgh’s hippest neighbourhood.
→ Don’t miss our guide to Stockbridge and Dean Village
20 Things To Do At Dean Village
- Walk to Dean Village along Water of Leith Walkway using the audio tour
- Pass the vertical Dam Head Weir waters, which powered the mills
- Cross the historic ford crossing green bridge that connected locals to the north from the city centre
- Take in Wells Court and its clock tower which was funded by philanthropist and owner of The Scotsman newspaper, J R Finlay
- Check out the red roofs and thatched exteriors of the hawthorn cottages built in 1895
- Cross the old stone Dean Bridge and look for a carved shovel symbol
- Tick the ochre yellow building, built in 1675, off your bucket list
- Seek out the “God bless the Baxters” inscription, which is where they collected tolls (money) from bridge users
- Admire the house goals at West Mills apartments/flats
- Head down Millers Row to see the three stones of Lindsays Mill
- Next, head to World Ends Weir
- Look up at Dean Bridge, designed by Thomas Telford, built in 1830
- Strain your neck to see the mural ceiling of St Bernard’s Well
- Say hello to the greek goddess of health, Hygeia, who stands in the monument
- Take a peek inside during Doors Open Day
- Get your Harry Potter fix at The Dene, built in 1824, while you enter Stockbridge. Fans! Read our Potter location guide
- Find out what to do next in Stockbridge. Here’s our tips
→ You may also like | Where to stay in Stockbridge
Other Things To Do Close To Dean Village
- Visit Modern 1 of the National Gallery of Modern Art
- Cross the road to Modern 2
- Enjoy al fresco lunch at Cafe Modern One
Cafes and Restaurants Near Dean Village
- Braw – friendly cafe serving soup and sandwiches
- Restaurant at The Bonham – seasonal Scottish menu served in Victorian building hotel
- Cafe Modern One – impressive deli, cakes and a garden terrace for al fresco lunching
- Forage & Chatter – ten-minute walk from Dean Village, Scottish food, romantic setting
- You’re only 15 minutes’ walk from these Stockbridge restaurants and pubs
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