Things to eat and drink
- Places close to Waverley Station for when you’ve just tumbled off the train and you’re starving: Baba Budan in The Arches has fantastic donuts and coffee, The Milkman on Cockburn Street also has great coffee, The Doric pub does a great burger and the Guildford Arms is beautiful pub with nice food and ales a’plenty.
- If you want visual food inspiration don’t miss Miss Piggy’s Instagram feed.
- Mary’s Milk Bar in the Grassmarket has fantastic gelato and milkshakes with lovely views of Edinburgh Castle.
- My favourite breakfast is at Edinburgh Larder Cafe, just off the Royal Mile.
- For good cake and coffee head to Lovecrumbs. The cake wardrobe has to be seen to be believed!
- Gobsmackingly good bread and cakes at Falko on Bruntsfield Place.
- The best burgers and amazing chocolate shakes are at The Cambridge Bar.
- Superb coffee and lovely Scandi treats at Peter’s Yard.
- Speaking of coffee, check out the Scotland Coffee Lovers which has an app with the best coffees in town (now covering all of Scotland).
- Affordable and delicious food made with fantastic British produce at The Dogs.
- My old favourite cheap and cheerful haunts include: Chop Chop in Haymarket and Mum’s Comfort Food in Forrest Road.
- For a posh treat, try afternoon tea at The Balmoral hotel.
- Cuckoo do the best cupcakes.
- Spice Pavilion has fantastic Indian food and very welcoming service.
- Vegetarian food: You can’t go wrong at the salad bar at Hendersons on Hanover Street or David Bann.
You want things to do that aren’t just eating? Oh.
Things to do
- You can’t go wrong with the Hop On Hop Off bus tour to get you orientated – buses leave from opposite Waverley Station.
- Mary Kings Close is a fascinating underground adventure
- a walk up the famous Arthur’s Seat if you need to walk off some cake
- Take a quick walk up to Calton Hill – it’s in the middle of town with great views
- The Water of Leith is another great walk
- the Saturday farmers market in Castle Terrace
- a visit to any of Edinburgh’s fab galleries – all with free admission
- the Museum of Scotland is free and fab
Where to stay
I love the new breed of budget-yet-stylish hotels that are popping up. Either of the two Motel Ones are in great locations, as I also like the new Premier Inn Hub – great location and those tiny rooms as so cleverly designed. Otherwise, AirBnB or Booking.com is your friend.
The rest of the country
Don’t forget the rest of the country – it rules!
If your time is limited and you don’t want to hire a car to explore the country, Rabbies and Haggis Tours offer great day or longer trips from Edinburgh, which can give you a good introduction to the highlights. Skye and the Highlands would be my first port of call.
- Undiscovered Scotland is my favourite site for finding places to go and things to see.
- Love From Scotland is a great for travel ideas for Edinburgh and beyond
- If you’re going to Inverness, check out Highland Foodie’s extensive post of things to see, eat and do.
- Mess In The Ness for the Scottish Highlands
- Visit Scotland is the official tourism website