Top Things To Sites to See And Things To Do In Edinburgh
If you want to spend your holidays in a city which is known to have a long list of historical and cultural attractions, then you need to book your tickets to the capital of Scotland – Edinburgh. After London, it is the second most popular destinations in the United Kingdom. And this is just not a vague statement; I will be narrating all those reasons why you should visit this beautiful city and what are the top things to see and do while you are in the city.
If you are in Edinburgh, you need to visit the iconic Scottish tourist attraction – Edinburgh Castle. The castle is well-defended on its volcanic cliff and it has seen it all the royal ceremonies, cruel battles, politics, and feasts. You get to explore its rich history that still inspires the present generation as well as the important national symbols such as Honors of Scotland and Stone of Destiny.
National Museum of Scotland
One of the popular tourist attractions is National Museum of Scotland which is of 6 floors and has a gorgeous outdoor terrace. The museum has a Victorian Grand Hall which has priceless collections and every year thousands of visitors visit this museum. It has 16 galleries; you get to know some of the best scientific discoveries and various wonders of nature, and varied cultures of the world.
You will surely love a wide variety of interactive displays that caters to all ages and the museum even has interactive area set for the kids. There are two cafes and shop from where you can do some shopping. The roof top terrace offers a great view of the city and a great place to click few pictures.
Drink Scottish Whiskey
When you are in Edinburgh, you should try out some of the world’s renowned Scottish whiskey. There are numerous whisky bars where you can spend a relaxed evening. Witnessing whiskey making process is an experience on its own you should not miss; you also get to listen to some of the ancient stories of the magical craft. The place is also known to have world’s largest collection of whiskeys and you get to taste some of the best flavours as well.
Princess Street Gardens
You will come across various gardens in Edinburgh but Princess Street Gardens takes the cake. Situated between the Old and the New Town, this beautiful garden is an ideal place to witness nature at its best. Not far away, there is a shopping street and once you have satisfied your yearning for shopping, you can relax by the Ross Fountain. You can have a picnic and take a leisure stroll to appreciate the floral clock and various statues around.
Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art
It is one of the national galleries of Scotland where you get to see the modern and contemporary art. The gallery is housed in two buildings and it is surrounded by a beautiful sculpture garden. Here, you get to witness some of the striking art work by Picasso, Vuillard, Warhol, Dix, Peploe, Gillies, Fergusson, and Redpath. You can visit the exhibitions for free and you can laze around at the beautiful terrace garden while enjoying the beautiful sunshine.
The gallery also has the displays of the postwar works by Davie, Leger, Freud, Hockney, and Davie. There are some recent masterpieces from Douglas Gordon, Martin Cree, Tracey Emin, and Karla Black as well.
Opened in 1913, Edinburgh Zoo is one of the popular zoos of the world. The zoo is known to be associated with various conservation breeding programmes of the animals in their care. Meerkat Plaza, an advanced chimpanzee enclosure, is a must visit along with Budongo Trail or you get to touch the rainbow colours at the interactive rainbow lorikeet enclosure. In addition, you also get to see amazing wildlife including – lions, zebras, penguins, zebras and many more. There are more than 1,000 endangered animals. The tickets rates are as follows –
- Child Tickets – £12.50 each
- Adult Tickets – £17
- Concession Tickets – £14.50
Royal Botanic Garden
It is, undoubtedly, one of the finest botanical gardens in the world. Located just a mile from the city centre, it is a great place to visit along with your family; the garden offers breathtaking views of the Edinburgh Castle as well. The garden is an ideal place to explore the fascinating history which goes back to 300 years, know more about the paintings, 70 acres of beautiful landscape is just a treat to the eyes.
Enjoy Victorian Temperature Palm House which was built in 1858 and it is one of the tallest traditional palm houses ever built. You will be amazed to visit the 10 superb Glasshouses each having a varied climatic zone and also home to more than 2, 000 exotic plants from different parts of the world.
Surgeons’ Hall Museums
You will surely enjoy your visit to Surgeon’s Hall Museums which is owned by The Royal College of Surgeons. Founded in 1505, it is one of the oldest museums of Scotland. The museum is unique in itself as you get to see amazing collections of the famous surgeons and anatomists such as John Barclay and Sir Charles Bell.
Opened in 1832 for the public, it was originally developed as a teaching museum for the medicine students. You will be fascinated by the collections of the museum including tissue and bones specimens, art work, and artefacts. If you are a medical student then this place will surely entice you, Wohl Pathology Museum has the world’s largest and historic collections of the surgical pathology.
Royal Yacht Britannia
It has been home to some of the renowned and famous people, but above all it was the home to British Royal Family for the more than 40 years. At the moment, it is berthed in Leith, Edinburgh and you get a chance to explore the royal residence in and out. You will surely love to learn more about the history of Royal Yachts and the historical photographs of the fascinating past of Britannia.
Make the most of the beautiful waterfront views in the Royal Deck Tea Room as the waiters serve you their special coffees and teas, sandwiches, and soups. Travel towards the Ocean Terminal to visit the Gift Shop where you can take home the exclusive Britannia souvenirs gift food, nautical items, and toys.
Loudon’s Café & Bakery
You will love the laid back ambience and the wooden furniture of Loudon’s Café & Bakery offering a unique blend of café and bakery. It is great place to taste some of their mouth-watering food and spending a relaxing time. It has a seating capacity of 70 people and if you are visiting with your kids, then the café offers baby changing facilities (ground floor) as well.
Since, the food is their specialty, the bread and baked goods are prepared there only. You can have vegetarian food with wheat and gluten free options. You can also enjoy locally-made beers and wines. In addition to great food, you will also find small retail shops where you can buy teapots, sweet treats, soft toys, and crockery.
About The Author: Emma Brown is a writer by profession. She has done Masters in Journalism and Mass Communication and is a Gold Medalist in the same. A voracious reader, she has written several articles for sites like Fixithere and newspapers like The Telegraph. She loves traveling and photography.
Image Source: #1,2,3,4, 5 – Pixabay
#6, Copyright Mike Pennington and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence
#7, CC-BY-SA-3.0 via Wikimedia Commons
#8, Copyright Robin Stott and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence
#9, “Royal Yacht Britannia, Leith, Edinburgh, Scotland” by Gary Bembridge is licensed under CC BY 2.0