Edinburgh Hotel Deals

The capital city of Scotland in the United Kingdom, Edinburgh is one of the most popular tourist destinations within the British Isles. The historic royal city has an array of attractions for visitors to enjoy, not mentioning some of the most picturesque scenery in Europe.

Edinburgh International Airport (EDI), which is located nine kilometers outside of the city center, offers access to the city from much of Europe. Although the airport does link with some destinations further afield – including Newark, U.S.A., and Cancun, Mexico – those traveling from outside of Europe are more likely to catch a connecting flight to London. From London, Edinburgh is accessible by road, rail, and air.

The city itself is home to an assortment of accommodation options, from lavishly designer hotels to private bed and breakfast establishments, from budget hotels to boutique guesthouses. Many of these are at the very heart of the city, just around the corner from Edinburgh’s most famous sites. Others are a little further out, but buses and taxis make travel into the city center fairly straightforward.

The most famous, and therefore most popular, tourist destination in the city is Edinburgh Castle. The castle, which dates back to the 12th century, looms high over the city, atop Castle Rock, which was formed during ancient volcanic eruptions. Today, visitors need not fear any such eruptions.

More than one million visitors tour the castle every year, taking in its ancient structure and feature, before enjoying a cup of tea in one of its coffee shops. The castle also host the Military Tattoo – a series of performances featuring bagpipes and drums alongside military personnel – which takes place every August during the city’s festival.

Edinburgh Castle sits at one end of what is known as the Royal Mile. Essentially, the Royal Mile is the beating heart of the city. It is here that visitors will find shops, cafés, souvenir stores, and a number of features unique to the city. These include “The Heart of Midlothian” is a floor-marker that illustrates where a former prison stood. Locals regularly spit on the heart as a sign of anti-authoritarianism.

At the opposite end of the Royal Mile stands Holyrood Palace, the royal residence of Queen Elizabeth II. Despite the fact that the palace is sometimes occupied by the Royal Family, visitors are permitted to tour the building – well, 14 rooms at least – throughout the year.

Another of Edinburgh’s unique attractions is Greyfriars Kirkyard. Like many graveyards that become tourist attractions, Greyfriars is famous for one of its interments. Unlike other graveyards, the famous case in point happens to be a dog; Greyfriars Bobby. The story goes that after his master was killed Bobby sat at his grave each night until his own death. As such, a commemorative headstone can now be found close to the gates with the name Greyfriars Bobby on it.

Edinburgh is also home to a number of museums and galleries, including the National Museum of Scotland and the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art. One of the most popular though is Our Dynamic Earth, a science museum located close to Holyrood Palace.

For those that enjoy the Great Outdoors, Edinburgh has some impeccable scenery to enjoy, headlined by Arthur’s Seat.

Arthur’s Seat is the name given to a hilltop peak at the heart of the city. Located just a mile from Edinburgh Castle, the hill and the range it belongs to offers a stunning view of the city and beyond. Any visitor is recommended to check this out.

Another of the city’s best vistas can be seen from atop Carlton Hill. Although less well known than Arthur’s Seat, Carlton Hill has the advantage of offering views of Arthur’s Seat itself. That’s something all photography lovers should keep in mind.

In addition to these hilly areas, the city’s Royal Botanic Gardens also makes for a pleasant backdrop against which to enjoy a stroll, or if the weather holds up, a picnic. Visitors can also enjoy the indoor flower and garden displays whilst visiting the attraction.

Edinburgh is a bustling city year round but there are two events in the annual calendar that send this city into a ridiculously hectic state. Whilst that might sound like a bad thing, it really isn’t.

The first of these events is the Edinburgh International Festival, which takes place during the month of August, when the city’s climate is fairly stable, and more importantly, warm. The festival as a whole is a month-long series of artistic and cultural events, featuring many smaller individual festival events. Visitors can expect to witness everything from science to music, from books to film. Stand-up comedy performers can be found about the city throughout the month, and are some of the most popular performers with locals and tourists alike.

The second of these events is Hogmanay, or Scottish New Year. Held on the last day of the year, celebrations run through the night well into New Year’s Day and generally include merriment on all levels.

If you’re planning on visiting Edinburgh during either of these events, be sure to book well in advance as hotels and other accommodation establishments quickly fill up.

If you’re looking to fit in with the locals, there are two activities you need to partake in. Firstly, take a trip to a whisky – not to be mistaken for whiskey, that’s the Irish equivalent – distillery to see how Scotland’s favorite tipple is made. You’ll get to sample some blends too.

Secondly, Scotland is the birthplace of golf, so be sure to take in a round or two. The city features six public courses, starting with the beginners-friendly Portobello. Mortonhall is the city’s oldest course, dating back to the 1800s. All of Edinburgh’s courses feature one thing in common; they all offer spectacular scenery to enjoy.

After an afternoon of golf, return to the city’s cobbled streets to enjoy a meal and drink in one of Edinburgh’s popular restaurants or pubs. Both prove to be hospitable, while Scottish cuisine may well surprise you.

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