Your print-out-and-keep guide to Edinburgh
Why go? The perfect weekend city break, Edinburgh is small enough to see all the highlights in just a couple of days, but diverse enough to ensure, no matter how many times you visit, there’s always something new to see.
Getting around? The city centre is easily navigated by foot, however, if you’re feeling lazy there are frequent bus services on offer. Purchase a 1-, 2- or 3-day Edinburgh Pass (www.edinburghpass.com) for free transport around the city and entrance into all the main attractions.
What to see? For its fabulous views across the city alone, a trip to Edinburgh Castle (www.historic-scotland.gov.uk) shouldn’t be missed. Afterwards, wander down the Royal Mile. As the name suggests, this is a mile-long cobbled street, stretching from the Castle at the top, down to Holyrood Palace (www.royalcollection.org.uk), the Queen’s official residence in Edinburgh, at the bottom, via Scotland’s controversial, modern parliamentary building, as well as a plethora of shops, cafes and museums.
Where to shop? If you’re looking for designer togs, drop in at Harvey Nics at St Andrew Square (www.harveynichols.com). In the same area, you’ll find Jane Davidson, Jenners and Belinda Robertson. Vintage fans should head to the Old Town where Fab Hatrix (www.fabhatrix.com), WM Armstrong & Sons (www.armstrongsvintage.co.uk) and Godiva (www.godivaboutique.co.uk) are all worth a browse.
Where to eat? Top of the list for anyone who likes seafood has to be the Mussel Inn (www.mussel-inn.com) on Rose Street. For lazy Sunday lunches, try Urban Angel (www.urban-angel.co.uk) on Hanover Street or Always Sunday (www.alwayssunday.co.uk) on the Royal Mile. Finally, splurge on afternoon tea at the Balmoral hotel (www.thebalmoralhotel.com), then enjoy cocktails at Tigerlily (www.tigerlilyedinburgh.com) on George Street.
Where to stay? If you’re feeling flush, a stay at the Balmoral or the Sheraton (www.starwoodhotels.com/sheraton) ensures five-star luxuries. For those on a budget, www.visitscotland.com offers details on a wide variety of affordable B&Bs. Outside the city, and just a short train ride away, is the stunning Macdonald Marine Hotel & Spa (www.marinehotel-edinburgh.co.uk). If you want to combine a weekend city break with the luxuries of a country house hotel, staying here is the perfect way to do it.
Need to know? For more information on visiting Edinburgh, see www.visitscotland.com.