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What is the best way to explore Edinburgh?

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What is the best way to explore Edinburgh?

Edinburgh is a stunning city with a long and rich history and full of culture, so it is no surprise that it attracts visitors and tourists from all over the world. With its picturesque architecture and world renowned attractions, it is definitely worth a trip when you’re in Scotland. But it can be daunting to know the best way to explore Edinburgh – how much time should you allocate, and how do you make the most of your time there? Below you’ll find our guide to exploring Edinburgh, suggesting the top spots to visit and how best to enjoy your stay.

How long should I allocate to explore Edinburgh?

It depends on the amount of time you have available, what your interests are, and what your budget is. If you’re looking to just dip your toe into the city by taking a few pictures at the main attractions (such as Edinburgh Castle or Holyrood Palace), then two or three visits over the course of a few days could work.

Alternatively, if you want to truly get the most out of your visit, we recommend that you allow yourself at least a week (two weeks, if you can) to really make the most of it. This would give you enough time to venture out into the city, visit some of the smaller attractions, take in some of the local culture, and of course take lots of photos to remember your trip.

Where are the best places to explore in Edinburgh?

There are plenty of amazing places to explore in Edinburgh! Here’s a list of some of our favourite spots:

  • Edinburgh Castle – arguably one of Scotland’s most iconic landmarks and the country’s most visited attraction, this gigantic stone fortress sits atop the Royal Mile and is home to the Scottish Crown Jewels.
  • Holyrood Palace – the official residence of the British monarch in Scotland and an iconic part of Edinburgh’s skyline.
  • The National Gallery of Scotland – an incredible collection of artworks spanning centuries.
  • The Royal Mile – this cobbled street links the castle with Holyrood Palace, packed with souvenir shops, pubs, restaurants, and even tartan-clad bagpipers.
  • Arthur’s Seat
  • – a dormant volcano located in Holyrood Park with amazing views of the city.

  • Princes Street Gardens
  • – this park is popular with both locals and visitors alike and divides Princes Street from the New Town.

These are just a few of our favourite places to visit in Edinburgh. We also recommend taking some time to explore the city’s many museums and galleries, discovering some of its hidden gems, visiting its numerous parks and green spaces, and taking some iconic shots like Calton Hill.

How should I get around Edinburgh?

Edinburgh is an incredibly walkable city, so one of the best ways to get around and to experience its historic atmosphere is by foot. Many of its most popular attractions are within easy walking distance from each other, so walking could be your preferred mode of transport for many days.

You can also take advantage of Edinburgh’s public transportation system which includes buses and trams. For longer trips within the city, you could hire a car or take one of its popular black cabs. Alternatively, there are also options for bike rentals which could help you get around quickly while saving on costs.

And if you’re looking to explore outside of Edinburgh itself, why not take advantage of Scotland’s extensive rail network or even explore some of its stunning countryside on a touring coach? You can find out more information about these options on visitscotland.com.

Our verdict:

Overall, Edinburgh is an amazing city that has plenty to offer when it comes to exploring. From stunning architecture and iconic landmarks to incredible galleries and vibrant green spaces, there’s something for everyone here! The best way to explore Edinburgh is by allocating yourself at least a week, allowing yourself to wander through its cobbled streets and discover hidden gems. Be sure to take in some local culture, dine in its many cafes, bars and restaurants, and don’t forget to take lots of photos! Using its public transportation system or even hiring a car can make getting around easy. Plus, don’t forget to investigate where outside of Edinburgh you could explore during your stay, as there are so many incredible places within easy reach!

An Insider’s Guide to Exploring Edinburgh

Edinburgh is a city overflowing with history, art, and culture. Whether you are an avid history enthusiast, an art lover, or a foodie seeking new culinary experiences, Edinburgh has something to offer. In this guide, we will take you on a journey through some of Edinburgh’s hidden gems, unique dining spots, cultural experiences, local history, and off-the-beaten-path suggestions you won’t find in your average tour guide.

Local Attractions: Explore Edinburgh’s Hidden Gems

When it comes to Edinburgh’s local attractions, the city is teeming with must-see places. However, if you are looking for some hidden gems that only locals know about, you will be delighted to know that Edinburgh has plenty to offer. For example, visit the Conan Doyle Pub, formerly known as The Waterloo, where you can indulge in a pint of beer whilst soaking up endless Sherlock Holmes memorabilia. Or take a stroll through the beautiful New Town, located beside the Old Town, with its stunning Georgian architecture.

Another lesser-known gem is the Garden of Cosmic Speculation, an eccentric garden located in Dumfriesshire, about an hour and a half from Edinburgh. This unique garden is a fusion of mathematical and scientific concepts that offer a truly unforgettable experience.

Dining Spots: Cuisine and Culture

To get the true flavor of Edinburgh, you must try its culinary delights. From its famous haggis to whiskey, the city is truly a foodie’s paradise. If traditional Scottish fare is your thing, head to The Sheep Heid Inn and try their haggis, neeps and tatties, and wash it down with a pint of local ale.

If you’re looking for something a bit more contemporary, you should check out The Gardener’s Cottage. This cozy restaurant is tucked away in a quiet corner of the city and serves locally sourced, seasonal produce that will ignite your taste buds.

Cultural Experiences: Festivals, Music, and Art

Edinburgh’s culture is rich and varied, with festivals, music, and art happening all year round. The Edinburgh Festival Fringe, for example, is world-famous and offers an unparalleled experience of theater, comedy, dance, and much more.

Music is also an essential part of life in Edinburgh, and the city has produced world-renowned bands like Belle and Sebastian and The Proclaimers. You can experience Edinburgh’s music scene by attending a concert at venues like The Usher Hall or The Queen’s Hall.

Art lovers will also be delighted to know that Edinburgh is home to a vast array of galleries, from the iconic National Portrait Gallery to smaller, independent galleries showcasing local talent.

Local History: Uncovering Edinburgh’s Past

Edinburgh has a rich and layered history dating back centuries. There are fascinating historical stories and landmarks throughout the city that are just waiting to be explored. Step into the past and visit the Mary King’s Close, where you can take a guided tour through historic alleyways and hear tales of life during the plague.

Another must-see landmark is the Edinburgh Castle, which has played a pivotal role in Scotland’s wars and was once the home of the Scottish Monarchy. The castle offers magnificent views of the city and houses many important historical artefacts, including the Scottish Crown Jewels.

Off-the-Beaten-Path: Unique Edinburgh Experiences

If you want to truly experience Edinburgh like a local, you must explore beyond the conventional tourist trails. Start by visiting the Scottish Poetry Library, a unique space that houses more than 45,000 items and offers an immersive experience into the world of poetry.

Another off-the-beaten-path suggestion is visiting the Arthurs Seat, a dormant volcano that offers breathtaking views of the city. You can also walk the Rosslyn Chapel, known for its mysterious gargoyle figures, made famous by Dan Brown’s novel, ‘The Da Vinci Code.’

In conclusion, Edinburgh is a city that has something to offer everyone. Whether you’re interested in history, food, music, art, or culture, this guide has offered a fresh and unique perspective on how to explore Edinburgh like a local. Take the time to discover its hidden treasures and immerse yourself in all that this magical city has to offer, and you’re sure to come away with unforgettable memories that will stay with you forever.

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What is the best way to explore Edinburgh?

Experience Adventure Like Never Before: Book Your Tour Today!