I took a trip to Edinburgh for the first time a couple of years ago, and was absolutely blown away by how amazing it was.
It is a city so rich in culture and beauty, combined with friendly people, good food and great fun at every turn.
The city is buzzing with excitement, and countless things to see and do - from dungeons to castles and everything in between.
Here are the experiences in the Scottish capital that you cannot afford to miss:
1. Dinner at The Witchery
This place is not exactly somewhere you would dine with the kiddos, because it is pretty fancy - but you seriously need to have an evening out for yourself and the hubby here. The Witchery by the Castle has developed a world-wide reputation for its exceptional dining experience, showcasing the very best of Scotland's produce in the most magical of settings.
Now in its fourth decade, the Witchery is a Scottish dining landmark, much loved by loyal locals, its celebrity fans and visitors to the city alike. Alongside the Scottish seafood, beef, lamb and game you'd expect to find, you'll also see the Witchery's legendary Angus beef steak tartare, briny-fresh seafood platters, wild game and even some haggis featuring on the menu.
2. Take in the scenery at Linlithgow Palace
Explore the magnificent ruins of the birthplace of Mary Queen of Scots with a trip to Linlithgow Palace! The royal retreat was built and added to over two centuries by the Stewart kings, resulting in a superb Renaissance residence.
High towers look out over lush greenery and a loch brimming with wildfowl, which is today a Site of Special Scientific Interest. Several monarchs were born in this royal ‘pleasure palace’, surrounded by its peaceful gardens and grounds.
Take a jaunt around the grounds of the Palace, enjoy the lovely gift shop and explore the quaint village of Linlithgow - which is filled with cosy pubs and fun little boutiques.
Linlithgow Palace looking good in the sunshine #visitscotland #brilliantmoments #icu_britain #ig_britishisles #ukpotd #britains_talent #instascotland #insta_scotland #loves_scotland #ig_scotland #photosofbritain #lovegreatbritain #pocket_uk #uk #brilliantbritain #kings_shots #superhubs_shot #worldsbestgram #landscape_kings #kings_shots #ig_great_pics #ig_brilliant #loves_united_kingdom
3. Experience The Real Mary King's Close
Beneath the City Chambers on the Royal Mile lies Edinburgh's deepest secret, a warren of hidden streets where real people lived, worked and died between the 17th and the 19th centuries.
The Real Mary King’s Close is a warren of underground streets and spaces, where, back in the 1600’s, Mary King’s Close and neighbouring Closes were at the heart of Edinburgh’s busiest and most vibrant streets. Once open to the skies and bustling with traders selling their wares to the Old Town’s residents, discover why would this street find itself underground 400 years later?
For years, the hidden Closes of Old Town Edinburgh have been shrouded in myths and mysteries. With a costumed character tour guide based on a one time resident, your group will explore this underground site, hearing these fascinating stories.
Это - не красивая картинка для instagram, это Must Visit #starchakplace Так что запоминайте или принтскриньте То самое крутое "подземелье", где сохранилась улица на которой жили 1700 человек, и до сих пор вывешены флаги (сигнал что в доме больны чумой)...Очень захватывающе!!! Но было немножко страшноватенько...Беременным, астматикам и людям с клаустрофобией посвящается... #starchakinscotland #шотландия #scotland #edinburgh
4. Have Afternoon Tea in The Signet Library
If you manage to find yourself in Edinburgh on a weekend away with the girls (lucky you!) then head to The Signet Library for the most wonderful afternoon tea in Scotland. You’ll discover the finest seasonal ingredients in sandwiches, delectable savouries and decadent cakes - all served on bespoke silver tea stands - so fancy.
Surrounded by vintage books and beautiful artwork, you will find yourself in ambience like no other - prepare to sit back, relax, and indulge.
5. Explore at Edinburgh Castle
Edinburgh Castle is one of the most exciting historic sites in Western Europe, and not even torrential rain can dampen the experience (my god, did it bucket down!)
Set in the heart of Scotland's dynamic capital city, this most famous of Scottish castles has a complex building history. The oldest part, St Margaret's Chapel, dates from the 12th century; the Great Hall was erected by James IV around 1510; the Half Moon Battery by the Regent Morton in the late 16th century; and the Scottish National War Memorial after the First World War.
The castle houses the Crown Jewels of Scotland, the Stone of Destiny, the famous 15th century gun Mons Meg, the One O' Clock Gun and the National War Museum of Scotland.
6. Eat haggis (yes, really!)
I know what you're thinking, but just hear me out for a second. When one of my lovely colleges suggested that I try the Scottish delicacy of 'haggis, neeps and tatties,' I initially was disgusted, at the sheer idea of it.
However, I gave in, and decided to give the sheep stomach a whirl, and it was DELICIOUS. The meal was served like a small cottage pie of sorts, and was genuinely so tasty. Arcade Bar is the spot to try this famous dish - you won't regret it!