A holiday or visit to beautiful Scotland is incomplete without at least one trip to Edinburgh, Scottish capital. Often termed the Athens of the North, due to the neo- classical architecture of the city, there really are activities to suit all age groups and tastes in Edinburgh.
Whilst city tourism may peak through the summer and early autumn months, with visitors for the famed Military Tattoo, and Arts Festivals, Edinburgh is now the home to year round festivals from International Science to Storytelling and Books and of course, the four day Hogmanay or New Year celebrations.
It certainly has to be said that the town is a joy to visit at any season, with its wealth of attractions, the Edinburgh Castle, plethora of museums, galleries and shops and the Scottish Parliament. Some less well known tourist attractions of Edinburgh are highlighted here.
Museums of Edinburgh
With 14 museums in the city centre and two close by, it is easy to see that cultural Edinburgh rivals London in many respects. The modern building of the well known National Museum of Scotland is centrally located and contains artefacts delineating the story of Scotland. Whilst, of course, one major Edinburgh attraction is the Royal Yacht Britannia with its Visitor Centre and tour of the decks and State Rooms, however details of some of the other museums in Edinburgh are as follows:
Huntly House Museum – displays featuring the history of Edinburgh from prehistoric times to present day
Museum of Childhood – childhood treasures from the past to the present
Museum on the Mound – Fascinating glimpse of the story of money
28 Charlotte Square – Collection of modern paintings in the setting of a Georgian town house
Surgeons Hall Museum – The history of surgery and Edinburgh’s contributions
The People’s Story – Oral history relating the lives of ordinary people from the late 18th Century onwards.
Shopping in the City
The one unmissable shopping trip in Edinburgh has to be the weekly Farmers Market, arguably the best produce market in Scotland, where all items on sale have been home produced by the stall holders themselves. Some other speciality items on sale throughout the town are:
Kilts and sporrans
Traditional foods, cakes and sweets
Gifts and ceramics.
Tours of EdinburghThere are many tours of the city, some of which are as follows:
Bus – Open top bus, one hour tour, with hop on and off facility and tour guide
Cycle – Three hour cycle tour of the city, not too strenuous and with guide, Equipment provided
Expert Guides – Individual tours which can be customised to meet customer requirements
Trike – Chauffeured Tour with Guide, Equipment provided, Seats two only
Green – Guided tours through parks and gardens of secret Edinburgh.
A trip to Edinburgh is certainly a treat not to be missed, whether as a one off short break or part of a longer holiday package.
See Also: New Year in Edinburgh for ideas on celebrating Hogmanay in the Scottish capital or
Tradtional Recipes from Edinburgh for some ideas for great party foods