Latest Edinburgh Blog Posts
September is a great time to visit Edinburgh - the city is a little quieter after the craziness of the International Festival, Festival Fringe and all the other events going on in August.
However, there's still loads going on in the city and plenty to see. One of my favourite events of the year is the Door Open Days is in September, where visitors can take a look around buildings and sites they wouldn't normally be allowed into.
To assist those planning a weekend in Edinburgh during September 2015, I have put together a few recommendations of hotel, apartment and B&B deals to check out. Click on the name of a hotel to search for the lowest available rates online.
- Culane House Hotel (3-Star) family-run hotel offering fantastic service. Close to all the fun and food of Leith.
- Holiday Inn Edinburgh City - West (3-Star) great rates for family rooms and only a short bus journey into the centre of the city.
- A-Haven Townhouse Hotel (3-Star) delightful small hotel on Ferry Road, just north of the city centre. Free parking and free breakfast.
If you have started looking for hotel deals in Edinburgh for August 2015 it may feel like they have all gone, but don't fret, there are some great value-for-money offers still out there.
Tip: Don't insist on staying in the city centre. Edinburgh has a great bus service that will get you around town quickly. And don't forget the train network - staying at a hotel near a train station will mean you can be at Edinburgh Waverley (in the heart of the city within minutes). Hotels are generally cheaper the further away from the city centre.
At other times of the year Edinburgh is cheaper midweek than at weekends, however, in August there's little price difference whichever day of the week you stay.
Looking at the hotel deals currently available for August, I'd suggest those on a budget take a look at some of these fine hotels and guest houses;
- Capital Guest House Edinburgh - 3-Star Guest House, friendly and homely.
- Best Western Braid Hills Hotel - 3-Star Hotel, a comfy family hotel with great views across the city. Lovely restaurant and bar too. Free parking.
- Novotel Hotel Edinburgh Park - 4-Star Hotel with swimming pool, restaurant, bar and free-parking a few moments from Edinburgh Park train station.
- Fraoch House - 4-Star guest house with excellent reviews. You may recognise it from the hit Channel 4 show Four In A Bed. Certainly walkable into the centre, or just get the bus.
When you come to visit us in Edinburgh you'll be amazed by the large number of gift shops offering a wide-range of Scottish goods.
However, you'll soon find that most of the standard gift shops sell the same familiar and rather predictable products. For those looking for a truly original and eye-catching gift for a friend or loved one, the search can soon become frustrating.
But help is at hand...
To help you find something that's affordable, easy-to-take-home, and unique, I've put together 5 Edinburgh Gift Ideas For Visitors.
- If your friend or family member is a fan of rugby then try and head along to First XV, the city's popular rugby shop. The shop can be found at 6/8 Haymarket Terrace (EH12 5JZ - 0131 337 4746) and offers up loads of original and official rugby kit from the national and district teams. Rugby is Edinburgh's most popular sport and at this store you'll find great clothing and accessory ideas that your friends back home will actually be delighted to receive and use over again.
- Do you have a friend who has everything? Then get them something quirky and unique that they certainly won't have, yet. How about an Edinburgh Paper Lantern from the Present Boutique at 18 St Mary's Street (EH1 1SU - 0131 556 5050)? The creative bunch behind this store revel in finding elegant and striking gifts for shoppers looking for something very different. Here's you're bound to something very interesting that will fit safely into your hand luggage.
- It's purely academic. If you're looking for an impressive gift that people will actually proudly use then head along to the University of Edinburgh's very own shop (6 Bristo Square, Edinburgh EH8 9AL). Here you'll find an array of clothing, stationery, jewellery, books and loads more, all emblazoned with the proud crest of our city's oldest University. Take home a stylish and affordable Edinburgh gift.
- Edinburgh is a haven for artists from around the world, and has been for centuries. Millions of people come to Edinburgh to enjoy the many galleries and art festivals. So why not take a piece of local art home with you? A great place to start delving is at The Red Door Gallery in the Old Town (42 Victoria Street, EH1 2JW - 0131 477 3255), here you'll find a wide array of affordable art, with screen, giclee and digital art prints among the many gorgeous items on offer. And, by the way, Victoria Street is one of the prettiest streets in Edinburgh and worth visiting in its own right - plus there are loads more cool gift shops available in the area if art is not the thing you buy.
- If you're looking for a traditional Scottish gift but with a twist then take a look at the stunning items that are available at 21st Century Kilts. Whereas the gift shops on the Royal Mile may offer kilt tea towels, you'll only find the most stylish of Highlandwear at the store on 48 Thistle Street (EH2 1EN). These bespoke kilts are the choice of film stars and rock musicians who want only the finest in attire.
I hope you find my list of Edinburgh Gift Ideas useful and inspiring. Have a great time here in Edinburgh and have a very safe journey home.
Below I have put together 11 Things To Do In Edinburgh Today!
- Take a look around Edinburgh Zoo - it's open 365 days of the year. Remember to book online before visiting to see the Giant Pandas.
- Tour Edinburgh Castle - this one was probably already on your list, if not, out it on. Edinburgh Castle is only closed on 25th & 26th December and the 1st of January.
- Walk up Arthur's Seat - you can do this any day of the year. Just take care and don't try it if the weather's bad. Remember your camera for all the stunning views.
- If the weather is a bit drab then head indoors to the Camera Obscura for some mind-bending fun.
- See how tartan and kilts are made at the Weaving Mill next to Edinburgh Castle. This is free!
- Do some boutique shopping, boutique eating and boutique drinking on fashionable Thistle Street in the New Town.
- Listen to some live Scottish music every night of the year and try a dram of whisky at the same time at the Whiski Bar.
- Enjoy afternoon tea in one of Edinburgh's top hotels.
- Discover more about Mother Earth at Edinburgh's fab science centre called Dynamic Earth.
- Take a dip in the brand new Commonwealth Swimming Pool - or The Commie as we locals refer to it.
- Take a walk, jog, run or bike along the beautiful Water of Leith from Balerno to Leith.
Yay, Christmas! And never is there a better time to have good old rummage around and see what statistics we can find that'll give us and you a bit of insight in to festive activities around the UK! Which is exactly what we've done...
We delved and scrabbled about like a six year old under a Christmas tree to see how our own jolly practices and traditions compare to that of the nation. With this infographic you'll be able to do exactly the same. For example, maybe you're among the 1% of people who don't open their pressies until the big day has been and gone! Yes, it's true. There are people out there who have that much will power!
How about your consumption of all that good food and booze? Does it stack up next to the national average or are you shovelling down too many Brussels sprouts? Come on you know you are! Find out what the UK makes of Christmas with this festive infographic.