Traveling to Edinburgh is a heady mix of walking back in time and hanging in a hip, modern city. It's one of our personal faves and an amazing mix of culture, history and fun. Here's a few fun tips to get your wanderlust going.
(photo source: thelastwordsaloon)
EAT: Prestonfield House. Every room is decorated ornately and has a different color. Oil paintings, servers in kilts, peacocks running around, and bagpipes playing for a wedding in the restored stables. Insane .. The Kitchen, from Michellen Star Chef Tom Kitchin is also a great place for eats. This gourmet restaurant brings you a map of the UK to show you where your food is sourced. Dishes are incredibly delicious and truly gorgeous. For drinks we recommend The Last Word. It has cozy open fireplaces and great Scotch (naturally). Drinking is the city's favorite past time so don't be surprised if you meet locals who will essentially lead you on a pub crawl that ends with lots of singing, hugging, and dancing long into the night .. cough* we may or may not know this from experience.
STAY: The Balmoral Hotel. Totally worth the splurge, the Balmoral is like staying in a castle. It's perfectly perched over the river, across the bridge and easy walking to everything you want to see and everywhere you want to eat. Luxury at it's finest and take a moment to have the afternoon tea service.
DO: Stroll to Edinburg Castle. Yes, totally touristy, but an absolute must for the views, the history and feeling like you're a Scottish king. We also loved roaming a little further afield towards the local ruins and walking up and the hills and feeling just a little nostalgic for Braveheart. On the way to the Castle, grab a coffee and fresh pastry from Hendersons. This is an organic, vegan coffee and food spot with really good pastries, quiche, and frittata made every day. They hand make the coffee too. It's a great little new meets old moment in the city.