Welcome to Edinburgh: A guide to the Scottish Capital
Edinburgh, the stunning capital of Scotland, effortlessly blends its rich historical heritage with a vibrant contemporary cultural scene. Set against the breathtaking backdrop of Arthur’s Seat and the Pentland Hills, the city captivates visitors with its dramatic skyline, dominated by the iconic Edinburgh Castle perched atop the imposing Castle Rock. From the cobbled streets and narrow wynds of the atmospheric Old Town, to the elegant Georgian architecture of the New Town, Edinburgh’s diverse neighbourhood’s offer a compelling fusion of ancient and modern.
Whether exploring its ancient landmarks, delving into its literary legacy, or savouring its culinary delights, Edinburgh’s timeless charm and cultural depth continue to enchant all who wander its storied streets.
As locals, we have discovered some hidden gems between the cobble streets and narrow closes’ (alleyways)- check them out in our guide to the Scottish Capital.
- Accommodation in Edinburgh
- Days out in Edinburgh
- Best places to eat
Accommodation in Edinburgh
Edinburgh offers a diverse range of accommodation options to suit different preferences and budgets, ranging from luxurious hotels to cozy bed and breakfasts.
Here are some of the best luxury accommodation options in Edinburgh:
The Balmoral Hotel
This prestigious and elegant hotel, located in the heart of the city on Princes Street, offers luxurious rooms, impeccable service, and stunning views of Edinburgh Castle, making it a top choice for those seeking a truly indulgent stay.
The Witchery by the Castle
Known for its opulent and gothic-inspired décor, this boutique hotel provides a unique and lavish experience within close proximity to Edinburgh Castle, offering an ideal blend of luxury, history, and romance.
The Scotsman Hotel
Housed within the former Scotsman newspaper building, this upscale hotel boasts a central location, luxurious rooms with stunning city views, and a sophisticated ambiance that reflects the city’s rich cultural heritage.
Edinburgh offers several budget-friendly accommodation options that provide comfortable stays without compromising on quality, including bed & breakfasts.
Here are some of the best budget-friendly accommodation options in Edinburgh:
Highfield Guest House
Located near the city center, Highfield Guest House offers affordable rates without compromising on quality. Guests can enjoy comfortable rooms, a hearty breakfast, and a welcoming atmosphere.
This charming bed and breakfast, situated in the heart of Edinburgh, provides affordable rates along with cozy rooms, a delicious breakfast, and a convenient location for exploring the city’s attractions.
Castle Rock Hostel
Situated near Edinburgh Castle, this popular hostel offers a friendly atmosphere, comfortable accommodations, and organised activities, making it an ideal choice for budget-conscious travelers looking to socialise and explore the city.
Things to do in Edinburgh
Edinburgh offers a plethora of exciting activities and attractions for visitors to enjoy. Wether you take a step back in time and immerse yourself into Edinburghs’ rich history, escape the bustling city by taking a walk round Edinburghs green spaces or head for some family fun in one of Edinburghs interactive experiences, there’s something for everyone.
Edinburghs historic days out
Edinburgh has a long and storied history that dates back centuries, with a rich tapestry of events, characters, and folklore that have shaped the city’s identity. Here are a few ‘must visits’ to immerse yourself in Edinburgh’s History… be careful, there are tales of spirits that still haunt the streets of Edinburgh today.
Explore this historic fortress perched atop Castle Rock, offering panoramic views of the city and housing the Scottish Crown Jewels.
The Royal Mile
Stroll along this historic street in the heart of the Old Town, lined with charming shops, pubs, and notable landmarks like St. Giles’ Cathedral and the Palace of Holyroodhouse.
The Real Mary King’s Close
Delve into Edinburgh’s hidden history with a guided tour through this underground network of streets and spaces, providing a fascinating glimpse into the city’s past.
Edinburghs green spaces
Edinburgh boasts an array of picturesque green spaces that offer respite from the bustling city life and provide a tranquil escape for locals and visitors alike. Here are some of the notable green areas in Edinburgh:
Home to the iconic Arthur’s Seat, this sprawling royal parkland encompasses rugged hills, grassy slopes, and scenic walking trails, providing panoramic views of the city and the surrounding landscapes.
Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh
Explore this world-renowned botanical garden, featuring a diverse collection of plant species from around the globe, as well as stunning glasshouses, landscaped gardens, and informative exhibitions that cater to both horticulture enthusiasts and casual visitors.
Running approximately 31 miles in length, the canal provides a picturesque pathway for outdoor activities and leisurely walks, offering stunning views of the surrounding countryside and urban landscapes.
Check out some more Outdoor activities in Edinburgh here
Edinburgh offers a range of interactive experiences that allow visitors to engage with its rich history, culture, and natural beauty.
Here are some interactive experiences to consider during your visit to Edinburgh:
The Edinburgh dungeon
Embark on a theatrical and interactive journey through Edinburgh’s dark and chilling history, featuring live actors, special effects, and immersive storytelling that bring to life the city’s most gruesome tales and historical events.
Camera Obscura and World of Illusions
Explore five floors of interactive exhibits, optical illusions, and hands-on experiences that challenge your perception and offer a playful and educational exploration of light, color, and visual trickery, all topped off with stunning views of the city.
Engage with interactive exhibits and immersive displays that take you on a journey through the Earth’s history, exploring natural phenomena, environmental changes, and the planet’s diverse ecosystems, providing an educational and entertaining experience for visitors of all ages.
Best places to eat in Edinburgh
Edinburgh is renowned for its vibrant and diverse culinary scene, offering a plethora of dining options ranging from Michelin star restaurants to quaint eateries and high quality pub-grub.
Here are some of the best restaurants and eateries in Edinburgh:
Scran and Scallie Edinburgh
The Scran & Scallie is a popular gastropub located in Edinburgh, Scotland. It is known for its high-quality Scottish cuisine, warm ambiance, and welcoming atmosphere. The restaurant was founded by renowned chefs Tom Kitchin and Dominic Jack, both of whom are highly regarded in the culinary world.
The Holyrood 9A
The Holyrood 9A is a popular gastropub known for offering a variety of classic pub dishes with a contemporary twist, emphasizing the use of locally sourced ingredients and high-quality produce. extensive selection of craft beers, ales, and ciders, making it a favoured destination for beer enthusiasts and those looking to explore a wide range of beverages.
Civerinos is a well-known Italian street food and pizza restaurant located in Edinburgh, Scotland. It is popular for its vibrant and contemporary atmosphere, delicious Italian-inspired dishes, and a diverse menu that caters to a range of tastes and preferences. Civerinos is popular with the locals, especially for grabbing as a takeaway to enjoy in the Meadows as the sun sets over the city.
Check out the our favourite places to go for breakfast in Edinburgh here
MY Adventure and Intrepidus Outdoors are adventure tours and outdoor experience providers, both based in Edinburgh, Scotland. We specialise in private and open canyoning, coasteering, mountain biking and hill walking tours, and deliver these adventurous experiences across Scotland. We are also a provider of the Duke of Edinburgh Award Expeditions where we run bronze, silver and gold level awards for young people.
- 6 steps to being happy like a Scot here
- You’ll never get bored in Edinburgh here
- Best Budget Hotels and Hostels Edinburgh here
- Hen Party Adventures Edinburgh: here
- Stag Party Outdoor Adventures Edinburgh Essentials: here
- SUP, A Buying Guide: here
If you haven’t already seen it, check out the our Trip Advisor, Youtube channel, Visit Scotland page and blog to hear about how others found their outdoor adventures with us! Equally, if there is any gear that you would like us to review, drop us a DM.