If you have a free weekend to take a break, there is no better place to visit than Edinburgh, Scotland. If you are flying from Madrid, it is perfect because there are Easyjet flights available to go on Friday evening and be back on Sunday night. Over the years, many of you have requested a little guide of Edinburgh from me, so I have decided to post it here.
The first thing you need to know, is that there is a bus stop just outside the airport from where you can take a bus into Edinburgh city centre for £3.50 (it stops at Waverly Station). Once you have checked into the hotel, you will have to go for dinner (remember that people in the U.K. have dinner earlier, you don’t need to have it at 6 o’clock but you should try to start before 21:00.
The most important thing you need to know is that the city is divided into two parts: the “Old Town” and the “New Town”. If you are in the old part, you could walk around the Grassmarket area and have dinner in The Last Drop and when you finish there might be little concerts in some of the nearby bars (I assure you they are generally worth it).
If on the other hand, you find yourself in the New Town area, you might fancy trying “haggis”, the national dish, in The Theater Royal – I personally like it and you shouldn’t leave Scotland without at least trying it (Note: don’t ask what is in it if you actually want to eat it …).
The next day, you cannot miss the best way of getting to know a town for free: take a free tour – if you click on the link you can check all the information for yourself. It is a company that offers tours with guides who show you the city in a completely different way, in a fun way. They are so good that they don’t charge you anything, they make a living on the tips, so if you like it don’t forget to tip them. The Spanish tour starts at 11 o’clock in the Starbucks located on Royal Mile (Old Town) and finishes at about 15:00. If that day you just want to eat something fast for lunch so you can keep seeing the city, a good option would be to have a roll with roast pork in a place called Pink, located in Victory Street (you can look for a huge roasted pig in the window). Even though the place has only one table, it is a good option to take away: it is very tasty and cheap, so don’t miss it!
If you get the typical Scottish weather, you know, cold, rain, wind… no worries! There are tons of amazing coffee shops like “The Rutland Bar” or “The Elephant” (famous for being the place where J. K. Rowling wrote Harry Potter) where you could have a tea with some shortbread. Also, you can visit most museums and galleries in Edinburgh for free!!
For dinner I would be crazy not to mention my favourite restaurant (oh I miss it) I’m talking about Mussel Inn, on Rose St. It is a restaurant that specializes in mussels that are taken daily from different islands of Scotland. They make them with different sauces and you can have the daily menu just for 7 pounds!! I try to go every time I’m back in Scotland.
On your last day in Edinburgh, you can visit all the places you don’t see with the free tour like Calton hill, from where you have an amazing view of the city, or you can go shopping all along Princes St. If you still have time for a coffee, don’t miss out “The Dome” on George St., a restaurant with an impressive ceiling. There you can try one of my favourite desserts, Sticky Toffee Pudding.
I hope this post has been useful if you are thinking about visiting this great city. I promise I will make new posts with new places in Scotland.