Best Season to Visit: Spring / Summer.
Reasons to Visit
- Exploring Scotland: Though Edinburgh is a wonderful and historic city, a trip to Scotland cannot be complete without getting out into one of the islands or the Scottish highlands. EDI airport is well-connected to many European cities and Edinburgh Waverly has excellent rail links to the rest of Scotland and frequent high-speed links to London, Manchester and Birmingham among others.
- Castles: Though tourists flock to the Edinburgh Castle, there are a few others within the city that are worth a visit (Lauriston castle & Dalhousie Castle)
- Stare endlessly at timeless architecture: Edinburgh is one of the best cities in the world to walk around in & stare at the historic architecture that’s present in every nook & cranny of old town. It’s easy to spend an entire day with a camera to walk from Holyrood castle to Edinburgh castle to Grassmarket just taking pictures. Explore the alleys (or closes in Scotland) for hidden views.
- Tip: Edinburgh’s Christmas is a lot of fun & a great time to see the beautiful city.
- Operator: Lothian Buses
- Airport to City Centre: 2 options, the locals take the 100 Express bus which is the faster option (20 minutes) and slightly cheaper as well. The Edinburgh tram is more comfortable but takes a bit more time (30 minutes). Tickets can be bought on board or from kiosks in the airport.
- Intra-city Travel: A single trip costs 1.6GBP (no transfers) and a day pass costs 4GBP. Buy tickets on board. Exact change is required.
- There exists a hop-on hop-off bus service with 5 routes that criss-cross the city. My recommendation would be to go for a day ticket instead and check our transit guide (linked below) for links between popular attractions.
Things to Do:
- Climb Arthur’s seat (featured image) / Salisbury Crags / Scott’s Monument
- Walk the Royal Mile / University of Edinburgh
- Sample Scottish Beer / Whisky paired with meats
- Other places: Portobello beach, Royal Botanical Gardens, Royal Yacht Britannia, National Gallery, National Museum.
- Play mini-golf at Bruntsfield or Leith Links
- Full list : Edinburgh Attractions & Transit Links
The Scottish weather is unpredictable to say the least. One can physically experience 4 seasons in one day. It’s on the grayer side as far as cities go with frequent intermittent drizzle. The summer is beautiful and can get up to a balmy 25C/77F. It’s a very windy city with 30 mph winds being normal, so it’s best to come armed with at least a wind-breaker. Winters have a small amount of snow and gets no colder than -4C/25F.
Food & Drink
- Haggis : Scotland’s most famous and eccentric dish consisting mostly of sheep gizzards. I think it’s delicious! Also Los Cardos Haggis burrito.
- Venison : Quite easy to obtain due to the large number of deer in Scotland.
- Aberdeen Angus : Meat source for some of the best steaks in the world
- Brunch: Milk near Haymarket station
- Whisky : Called Scotch everywhere else in the world. Try 1 from each region. The Whiski rooms is a nice place to do so. The best Speyside collection is definitely at the Scotch bar in the Balmoral Hotel.
- Beer: Some of the best in the UK. Salt Horse & The Hanging Bat are my favourite places to grab some craft beer. Some suggested breweries are BrewDog, Pilot and Inveralmond
- Wings for chicken wings
- Stack for dumplings
- Vietnam House for Vietnamese food
- Le Escargot Blanc / Blue for French
- Locanda de Gusti, La Favorita, Divino, Papilio and more for Italian
- Thai food at Ting Thai Caravan & Passorn
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