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 from our journey and my brother's, who happens to be there now, to get your wanderlust going.
STAY: The Balmoral Hotel
(photo by Jason Politte)
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.
(Charley storming the castle)
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.
EAT: Prestonfield House
(my bro and his fiancé out for a special - kilt and peacock infused - meal)
This tip comes straight from my brother who happens to be in Edinburgh right now and I asked him to update me on the latest and greatest. He ate here last night and here's his description:
"Every room is decorated ornately and has a different color. Oil paintings, servers in kilts, peacocks running around, bagpipes playing for a wedding in the restored stables. Insane."
you had me at peacocks!
The Kitchen From Michellen Star Chef Tom Kitchin - 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.
DRINK: The Last WordFrom what I can remember from my trip to Edinburgh, drinking is the city's favorite past time. Our favorite night started by meeting some locals at dinner who essentially led us on a pub crawl that ended with us all singing songs and hugging and dancing long into the night somewhere.
My brother remembers more clearly since he's there now and mentioned The Last Word. He noted the cozy open fireplaces and great Scotch (naturally).