Every year at this time, we always like to imagine Edinburgh taking a deep breath.
Although the city is filled with tourists and all the year-round attractions are enjoying the height of the summer season, one thing is waiting in the wings. The Fringe.
Work is beginning all round the city centre as venues are prepared: temporary ones such as the new Assembly George Square; and permanent ones like Teviot, donning its Gilded Balloon mantle for another August season.
And don’t forget also that the National Museum of Scotland is also re-opening just days before the Fringe begins. Placed right in the heart of things, its refurbishment is bound to benefit from the thousands of people walking past every day.
But nowhere is that deep breath more palpably felt than on the Royal Mile itself. At the moment, it is quiet (relatively, of course). But in just over 2 weeks, it will be a riot of colour, energy and enthusiasm as Edinburgh once again opens its arms to the one and only Edinburgh Festival Fringe.
We took a wander round town today to get a taste of things to come ourselves – browse the photos below or click on any one to view them as a gallery.