Full of history and many famous attractions, Edinburgh is a must-see city on any visit to Scotland. It is renowned for its famous landmarks like Edinburgh Castle, Holyrood Palace, and the Royal Mile. Visitors to Edinburgh can stand on the remains of an ancient volcano, see where Mary Queen of Scots resided, and view the new Scottish Parliament- all within a short distance. However, the strength of the British pound sometimes makes it difficult to visit the UK without leaving an arm and a leg behind. Here’s how to enjoy “Auld Reekie” on a budget.
Visit the Museums
Most of Edinburgh’s museums are free to visit. Consider booking the Scotsman hotel in Edinburgh for easy access to nearby museums, and spend the entire day exploring exhibits and old buildings. Try the Writers Museum on the Royal Mile or the Museum of Scotland for details of local history.
Take a Hike
Escape from your base at the Haymarket Hotel in Edinburgh at dawn and head for Arthur’s Seat, the prominent crag overlooking the city that was once a volcano. From there, you’ll have an amazing view of Edinburgh from a fantastic vantage point.
Famous monuments and statues are all over the city of Edinburgh; walk around town and you’ll find memorials to Adam Smith, David Hume and Sherlock Holmes, for example. Don’t forget to visit Greyfriars Bobby, the delightful dog statue commemorating the local Skye Terrier who lived beside his deceased master’s grave.
Pack a Picnic
One of the cheapest ways to eat out is to grab some picnic ingredients from a local deli and head for one of the viewpoints or gardens in the city. Try Princes Street Gardens or Calton Hill with its lovely views. For a quieter spot to eat, check out the secret garden behind Dunbar Close on the Royal Mile.
Use Public Transportation
Edinburgh is an easy city to walk around, but if you need a ride, make use of the cheap and efficient public transportation system. Bus service from the airport to the center of town is quick, and cheaper than a taxi. Trams have recently been reintroduced to Edinburgh, and are another fun and cheap way of exploring the city.
Tour the Parliament
Scotland has its own parliament building at Holyrood, and the question of independence from the rest of the United Kingdom has been an issue for several years. You can take free one hour tours of the Scottish parliament building, though they must be pre-booked.
Have a Swim and a Soak
Edinburgh has its own beach at Portobello, and although it may not have the warm waters of the Mediterranean, it is nonetheless popular in summer with swimmers. Nearby are some traditional Turkish baths, which are the perfect antidote to an energizing day sightseeing in Edinburgh.
Edinburgh has many attractions which are within walking distance of many of the good hotels. Take a look at the diverse attractions in Scotland’s capital city!
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