We had the opportunity to live in Edinburgh, Scotland while my husband was interning with the Scottish Parliament! It was my first time in the UK and we absolutely loved Scotland – the country, castles, amazing landscapes, people and culture. We would move back in a heartbeat!
We arrived not having a place to live (!) but luckily we found the perfect flat just a few minutes walking from my husband’s internship. We found the flat through Gumtree, which is similar to Craigslist.
Edinburgh is an amazing blend of old, historical buildings and new and modern shops, restaurants and businesses. They have a pretty great public transportation system in the city, we got everywhere without a car.
See & Do
Edinburgh Castle – take a tour of the beautiful Edinburgh Castle, set atop a hill overlooking the city, it even includes a pet cemetary!
The Royal Mile – the main street that starts at the castle and ends at Holyrood Palace, lined with shops, restaurants, pubs, etc.
Holyrood Palace – The Royal Family residence when they are in Scotland. Tour info here.
Scottish Parliament – The building across from Holyrood has a very unique architecture (which you’ll learn the significance if you take a tour)! Tour info here
Princes Street/Old Town Edinburgh – centrally located shops, bars, restaurants, hotels, and gardens.
Climb the Scott Monument – named after Sir Walter Scott, one of the most admired men in Scotland.
Football – or soccer as we call it in the US 😉 There are two main clubs based in Edinburgh, Hearts and Hibs (Hibernian)
National Museum – free admission
Elephant House – One of the tea and coffee shops where J.K. Rowling penned Harry Potter. They also serve pastries and have a great view of Edinburgh Castle!
Arthur’s Seat – an easy hike up the mountain, you will be rewarded with amazing views of the city!
Edinburgh is cold in the winter and usually gets a small amount of snow. The sun sets in the late afternoon. The summer days are long, similar to Alaska.
There are lots of other amazing things close by:
Glasgow – the largest city in Scotland is a short train ride from Edinburgh’s Waverly Station
The Highlands and Islands – you would need a car to get there, but there are lots of tours that leave from Edinburgh, like Highland Exhibition Tours – be sure to check out Loch Ness!
St. Andrews – the “home of golf”, St. Andrews Cathedral, St. Andrews University
Stirling Castle and the Wallace Monument – about an hour from Edinburgh, you can take a tour of the castle and also hike the monument.
I may or may not have a price alert set to Edinburgh! Hoping we can make it back one day!