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Edinburgh
Travel Guide

The ‘Athens of the North’ is an excellent choice for a traveller seeking variety.  Edinburgh is a bustling city, full of history, with countryside tranquillity on its doorstep.

Scotland’s cultured capital has it all. It is an ancient and modern city with an array of great festivals, museums, galleries, parks, gardens, pubs, restaurants and a very famous castle.

Edinburgh Castle is the city’s most famous and most-visited landmark. Sitting high on volcanic Castle Rock, it can be seen from the Old Town and New Town. It dates back to the 12th-century and is still in use today. Walk up to the esplanade via the cobbled streets of the Royal Mile for an appreciation of old Edinburgh. If tartan tourism appeals this is also the place to indulge.

While in the neighbourhood, make a booking at the enchanting Witchery by the Castle restaurant, set in a 16th-century underground building. It takes its name from the many women burned at the stake on Castlehill. These days, the steak tartare is better known.

Downhill from the Castle you’ll find the lively Grassmarket area. Walk down colourful Victoria Street to experience city’s unique structure. Here you’ll find independent shops, bars and restaurants. One thing you’ll notice about this city is the versatile range of drinking and dining options. There is something for all tastes in Edinburgh.

Winding away from the Old Town, via the city Mound, head towards Prince’s Street for a stunning view across to the New Town. Below the Mound sits the National Gallery of Scotland and the Royal Scottish Academy, which attracts some internationally esteemed exhibitions throughout the year.

From the Mound you can see the gothic Scott Monument, which pays tribute to Scottish author Sir Walter Scott. Ascend the 200 feet (61 metres) tall tower for panoramic views of the city centre.

The Monument is a good reference point. It sits on Princes Street, along from the tourist office, Balmoral Hotel, Waverley Train Station and by Princes Street Gardens. The Gardens date back to the 18th-century and were created after the draining of former Nor Loch, located here. In summer, it is a great place to relax.

On the other side of Princes Street, sits the New Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, dating back to the mid-17th century. Here you’ll find Edinburgh’s elegant Georgian architecture, art galleries, independent shops, bars and cafes. If you take a closer look you might spot former homes of Edinburgh’s literary heroes, JM Barrie and Robert-Louis Stevenson, who once lived here.

Edinburgh has much to offer in and around the city, which extends to the bohemian Shore area, where the Royal Yacht Britannia rests. Take a bus tour before settling on your favourite area to relax and sample a whisky.

Don’t forget to check out the festival calendar before you visit. August is Edinburgh’s biggest festival season.

Edinburgh Travel Guide Video

Where to stay in Edinburgh

Top hotels in Edinburgh

The Knight Residence Apartments by Mansley
The Knight Residence Apartments by Mansley
5 out of 5
12 Lauriston Street, Edinburgh, Scotland
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Located in Old Town, this luxury apartment building is within a 10-minute walk of Grassmarket, Royal Mile, and Princes Street. Edinburgh Castle and Usher Hall ...

4.8/5Exceptional! (1,283 reviews)

"We loved our stay at this property so much we extended an extra day. The apartment was clean and ultra convenient. Lots of restaurant choices just to the west; the castle and old town were a 5-10 minute walk. The secure on-site parking was a bonus. Reception called in advance to arrange our arrival ..."…"

Reviewed on 28 Nov 2020

The Knight Residence Apartments by Mansley
Hampton by Hilton Edinburgh West End
Hampton by Hilton Edinburgh West End
3 out of 5
166 Fountainbridge, Edinburgh, Scotland
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Located in West End, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Edinburgh International Conference Centre (EICC) and King's Theatre. Princes Street and Grassmarket ...

4.4/5Wonderful! (819 reviews)

"Great stay. Only way could have been better is if knew to park at local ncp car park before stay... not sure why parking process isn’t simpler at hotel?!"…"

Reviewed on 27 Sep 2020

Hampton by Hilton Edinburgh West End
Dalmahoy Hotel & Country Club
Dalmahoy Hotel & Country Club
4 out of 5
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This family-friendly Kirknewton hotel is located near the airport, within 3 mi (5 km) of Edinburgh International Climbing Arena Ratho and Heriot Watt University. ...

4.4/5Excellent! (1,386 reviews)

"Lovely hotel to stay at. Staff were helpful. Will be back soon."…"

Reviewed on 13 Dec 2020

Dalmahoy Hotel & Country Club
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Top Holiday Rentals in Edinburgh

The Knight Residence Apartments by Mansley
The Knight Residence Apartments by Mansley
5 out of 5
12 Lauriston Street, Edinburgh, Scotland

Located in Old Town, this luxury apartment building is within a 10-minute walk of Grassmarket, Royal Mile, and Princes Street. Edinburgh Castle and Usher Hall ...

4.8/5Exceptional! (1,283 reviews)

"We loved our stay at this property so much we extended an extra day. The apartment was clean and ultra convenient. Lots of restaurant choices just to the west; the castle and old town were a 5-10 minute walk. The secure on-site parking was a bonus. Reception called in advance to arrange our arrival ..."…"

Reviewed on 28 Nov 2020

The Knight Residence Apartments by Mansley
Cheval Old Town Chambers
Cheval Old Town Chambers
5 out of 5
Roxburgh's Court, Off 323 High Street, Edinburgh, Scotland
The price is £106 per night from 7 Mar to 8 Mar

Located in Old Town, this luxury apartment building is steps away from City Chambers, Princes Street and Royal Mile. St. Giles' Cathedral and Real Mary King's ...

4.8/5Exceptional! (1,387 reviews)

"Lovely grand building. Apartments are quite small but high end. Really enjoyed our stay, got deliveroo right to our door. Wilk definitely be back."…"

Reviewed on 2 Nov 2020

Cheval Old Town Chambers
Cheval The Edinburgh Grand
Cheval The Edinburgh Grand
5 out of 5
42 St Andrew Square, Edinburgh, Scotland
The price is £126 per night from 8 Mar to 9 Mar

Located in New Town, this luxury aparthotel is steps away from Multrees Walk, Princes Street and George Street. Edinburgh Playhouse Theatre and Royal Mile are ...

4.7/5Exceptional! (425 reviews)
Top Drawer

"Always excellent service from friendly staff. Perfect room for the stay."…"

Reviewed on 27 Nov 2020

Cheval The Edinburgh Grand
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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