Visiting Edinburgh

Apr 3rd, 2002, 05:02 PM
  #1  
Tim
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Visiting Edinburgh

I will be in Edinburgh in early May and would appreciate some ideas of things to do and shopping for Scottish goods. I will have an open weekend, then will have to work during the weekdays.
 
Apr 3rd, 2002, 06:32 PM
  #2  
Jamila
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I was just there March 13-15, 2002. Edinburgh is a small city with so much history, yet bustling with all the modern aspects of life - like Starbucks!! I recommend first going on the open top bus tour. It's only one hour and will take you up and down the Royal Mile and around the tourist sites. It's a good way of checking out the city and then you can go back and see what you want to in more detail. I took the Guide Friday bus tour. They have people giving live tours. Edinburgh Castle and Holyrood Palace is a must see. If you are interested in past torture tactics, there is the Edinburgh Dungeon. There is a big department store off of Princes Street (the name escapes me). It's known as the Harrods of Scotland. Up and down the Royal Mile are Scottish souvenier shops - they carry the usual Scottish design ties, sweaters, mugs, etc. You should definitely attend an Underground Vault walk. They are throughout the day and as late as 9:00pm. The night tour is awesome! You can join one of those at the Tron Church, which is located on the Royal Mile. If you have any questions, email me directly. Edinburgh is the coolest city I've ever been to in the world. I plan on going back some time this year.
 
Apr 3rd, 2002, 06:52 PM
  #3  
Jamila
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I was just there March 13-15, 2002. Edinburgh is a small city with so much history, yet bustling with all the modern aspects of life - like Starbucks!! I recommend first going on the open top bus tour. It's only one hour and will take you up and down the Royal Mile and around the tourist sites. It's a good way of checking out the city and then you can go back and see what you want to in more detail. I took the Guide Friday bus tour. They have people giving live tours. Edinburgh Castle and Holyrood Palace is a must see. If you are interested in past torture tactics, there is the Edinburgh Dungeon. There is a big department store off of Princes Street (the name escapes me). It's known as the Harrods of Scotland. Up and down the Royal Mile are Scottish souvenier shops - they carry the usual Scottish design ties, sweaters, mugs, etc. You should definitely attend an Underground Vault walk. They are throughout the day and as late as 9:00pm. The night tour is awesome! You can join one of those at the Tron Church, which is located on the Royal Mile. If you have any questions, email me directly. Edinburgh is the coolest city I've ever been to in the world. I plan on going back some time this year.
 
Apr 3rd, 2002, 07:32 PM
  #4  
Mel
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Edinburgh is a favorite of mine and I visit as frequently as possible. Aside from the Royal Mile, which has Edinburgh Castle at the top and Holyrood at the bottom and is filled with everything from pubs to kilt shops to souvenir shops in between (the famous, if touristy, Deacon Brodie's Pub was undergoing extensive renovation when I was there in February and, though open, is hard to recognize under the scaffolding). There's Princes Street just beyond it (the store Jamila is referring to is Jenners), but it also has Marks & Spencer and several small boutique shops.

Just off the Royal Mile is Greyfriar's Pub, which has the statue of Greyfriar's Bobby in front. Bobby's the dog that visited the pub every day with his master and sat at his feet. When his master died, and was buried in the cemetary behind the pub, Bobby laid on his grave every day (being fed by pub patrons) until he died, as well. He's a local celebrity and there are postcards and books about him everywhere. You can go into the cemetary and see the graves, as well as the cells used by the Covenanters, which feature gargoyles, skulls, etc. and are said to be haunted.

If heading up the Royal Mile toward the castle, turn right onto Victoria Street to the Grassmarket section. Twisty streets with lots of antique shops, great little pubs and cafes, book stores, etc.

Head further down through town (you'll want to take a bus or taxi) to Newtown, the Georgian section that's become very hip for restaurants and upscale shopping, as well as expensive townhomes.

For tartan gifts to take home (scarves, capes, caps, blankets, jewelry), go ahead into the shops that say they're kiltmakers--the sales people are very helpful and carry a line of giftware. Another "Scottish" gift might be a piece of Rennie MacIntosh pewter jewelry, picture frames, etc. which can be found at most jewelry stores. It's art deco pieces based on the designer (think Frank Lloyd Wright) are very big there right now. Edinburgh crystal is another beautifully crafted gift idea.

Have a wonderful trip!
 
Apr 23rd, 2002, 12:42 PM
  #5  
Lorene
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My husband and I will be in Edinburgh Aug 12-15 for the festival. We are staying at the Dunstane Hotel. Does anyone have any experience with this hotel? Please enlighten us as to what to expect. We did not know there was an underground tour in the city but that is definately something we would like to participate in. Thanks for the tips.

 
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