Edinburgh is the capital city of Scotland. With a population of 495,360, it is the second largest city in Scotland and the seventh most populous in the United Kingdom. Located in the south-east of Scotland, Edinburgh lies on the east coast of the Central Belt, along the Firth of Forth, near the North Sea.
The city was one of the historical major centres of the Enlightenment, led by the University of Edinburgh, helping to earn it the nickname Athens of the North. The Old Town and New Town districts of Edinburgh were listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1995 in recognition of the unique character of the Medieval Old Town and the planned Georgian New Town. The city has over 4,500 listed buildings and the highest coverage of conservation areas of any major city in the UK.
The city hosts a group of festivals held annually over four weeks in August. The best-known of these events are the Edinburgh Fringe, the largest performing-arts festival in the world; the Edinburgh International Festival; the Edinburgh Military Tattoo; and the Edinburgh International Book Festival. Other annual events include the Hogmanay street party and the Beltane Fire Festival.