I’ve been to Edinburgh twice. One time for 24-hours, after traveling to Copenhagen and Berlin with friends. The second time was for 72-hours, since I didn’t get to fully experience Edinburgh the first time. I wanted to share an Edinburgh travel guide based on my two times traveling to this beautiful city:
What to see/do:
- Royal Mile Market: A market that sells things such as: jewelry, wool clothing, books, pottery, and souvenirs. The market used to be a church, which is obvious when you see the building structure – specifically the windows.
- Arthur’s Seat: An extinct volcano situated in Edinburgh’s city center. The mountain gives you an incredible view of the entire city of Edinburgh. It’s free to hike up the mountain and it’s relatively easy to climb. Anyone who knows me knows I am terrified of heights! The hike up and down wasn’t scary though, so it’s totally doable for anyone. However if you’re short, like I am, you might have a hard time walking up the steeper steps. You should also remember to dress appropriately. While you might get hot during the trek, it’ll get cold and windy once you make it to the top. It takes about 2-3 hours to hike up Arthur’s seat – especially if you’re out of shape, like I am 😅, so plan accordingly.
- Royal Mile: Provides souvenir shops, restaurants, street performers, bars and more. It’s a great place to not only get your souvenirs but also hold an owl 🦉! Holding an owl and getting pictures cost about £3. By the way, the owls name is Hazel and she’s very sassy. Literally my spirit animal.
- Princes Street: This shopping center provides clothing stores that are a staple in the U.K. (e.g. Topshop, River Island, H&M).
- Stramash: A live music pub, Stramash has different acts come on stage to perform. While I was there, a girl came up to me and asked to dance in exchange for glitter. If you read my Berlin post, you’ll remember I went on a bar crawl and met the unicorn lady who had glitter. So I felt it was only right to keep up with this tradition of having glitter put on my face!
Where to eat/drink:
- Ting Thai Caravan: A cheap Thai restaurant, not far from the University of Edinburgh or the Royal Mile. Their food is so good that I went both times when visiting Edinburgh. It can get fairly crowded and have a pub vibe with loud music. Or, it can have a quiet and relaxing vibe. It really just depends on when you go. Both times I visited, I ordered the Tom Yam Gai and shared sweet potatoes fries, with their secret sauce. Their food is literally out of this world!
- Yum Yum Kebab: A middle eastern restaurant that sells kebabs, falafels and french fries with the optional curry sauce and cheese on top. The curry sauce was gone once we got there, so I settled for cheese and barbecue sauce on top.
- Wings: A restaurant located off of the Royal Mile that serves wings. I’m sure the name gave it away. Wings has an assortment of dry rubs and sauces you can choose from to put on your wings, fries or deep fried cheese! The menu is divided by different categories (e.g. BBQ, sweet, sizzler) and within each category there’s different levels of heat the sauce/rub provides (ranging from 1-11) . If you’re able to finish the level 11/suicide sauce, then you get a place on their “wall of flame”. Not only were the sauces I tried amazing, but the nostalgic atmosphere of Wings was also a plus! There’s images of comic book figures and old films such as: Star Wars, Bad Boys and Power Rangers. There’s also Nintendo 64 systems on tables where you can play: 007 GoldenEye, Donkey Kong and more. This restaurant is basically my childhood manifested!
Have you been to Edinburgh? What places did I miss that you’d suggest for anyone visiting for the first time?