Things to do in Edinburgh Vibrant, majestic, cosmopolitan, beautiful - these are just some of the words used to describe Edinburgh, Scotland's Capital City. There are so many things to see and do that we couldn't begin to cover all that this UNESCO World Heritage Site has to offer, but we hope that these suggestions will inspire you to explore....
For art lovers... There is an abundance of art galleries and museums in Edinburgh, housed in beautiful surroundings. Whether you love the old masterpieces or wish to ruminate over a modern sculpture your imagination will run wild. Visit www.nationalgalleries.org for more information. The gallery shops are stocked with prints and postcards to remind you of your visit, but if you want to buy an original work from a Scottish artist to remind you of your visit head for Dundas Street for a plethora of fine art galleries.
For a sense of history... Edinburgh has enough museums and sites of historical interest to keep you busy for a month. Edinburgh Castle and Palace of Holyroodhouse immediately come to mind, but don't forget about the many museums Edinburgh has to offer, including the National Museum of Scotland. Take the opportunity to step out of the seminar auditorium and wander around– the building itself is worth a visit!
Alternatively, be transported back to the 17th Century and visit The Real Mary King's Close. This fascinating tourist attraction contains a warren of streets which have been frozen in time below the Royal Mile. Don't forget to take a small toy to leave for Annie, the little girl ghost said to haunt the close.
For the best views... You don't have to go very far for amazing panoramic views of Scotland's beautiful capital city. There are 7 volcanic plugs in Edinburgh, known as the Seven Hills, each offering different yet amazing perspectives of the City and beyond. Carlton Hill and Arthur's Seat are both within walking distance from the City Centre, and give you wonderful 360° views of the city, from the Pentland Hills to the Firth of Forth. If you have a head for heights, climb up the Scott Monument Edinburgh's 200ft gothic tribute to Sir Walter Scott, but beware the narrow spiral staircase is not for the faint hearted. The views are from the top are worth it though!
Escape from the City...
If you want to escape the city centre head down to Edinburgh's beautiful Botanic
Gardens or take a short taxi ride to Leith to learn more about Edinburgh's maritime
history. Whilst you're there don't forget to visit the Royal Yacht Britannia for
a fascinating insight into holidaying as a member of the Royal Family.
Stockbridge offers a more intimate village feel with great coffee shops, restaurants,
gift shops and boutiques. From there why not take a walk along the Water of Leith
under the Thomas Telford designed Dean Bridge to Dean Village? From there you can
continue to the stunning Modern Art Gallery which all adds up to a wonderful afternoon
The borders railway re-opened in 2015. If you fancy a trip out of Edinburgh, why
not head down to see the former home of Sir Walter Scott, Abbotsford House.
For those who love to shop 'til they drop...
From designer boutiques to vintage emporiums every shopping need is catered for in
Edinburgh. Start your day at Jenners, on Princes Street the oldest department store
in Scotland, but don't forget about the wonderful independent boutiques on nearby
Thistle Street. For designer brands including Mulberry and Louis Vuitton head to
Multrees Walk, stopping off for a cocktail at Harvey Nicholls.
If you want to reminisce about past fashion faux pas head down Victoria Street and
into the Grassmarket to the Edinburgh institution that is Armstrongs, passing some
lovely independent retailers on the way. In Britain's Largest Vintage Clothing Emporium
you'll have a wonderful time trying on funky flares, and wondering if you can still
walk in 6 inch platform heels.
For foodies everywhere...
Edinburgh is a food lover's dream. From Michelin Starred Restaurants to scrumptious
Italian Deli's such as Valvona & Crollathe city caters for every taste. For a local
and trusted view of bars and restaurants in the city pick up a copy of The List magazine
or check out the online version here.
Whilst you're visiting why not indulge in afternoon tea. There's plenty of choice
– we recommend Mimis Bakehouse in Leith for amazing cakes or the Balmoral Hotelfor
its beautiful surroundings and wonderful service – you'll need to book in advance
to be sure of a table.
Finally don't forget to try some traditional Haggis with a dram of Scotch Whisky
whilst you're here. The traditional bars of Rose Street, the Grassmarket, and Royal
Mile are well stocked with wonderful malts and knowledgeable bar staff.