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Edinburgh: excellent, enjoyable, and entertaining



The capital of Scotland and the seat of its Government and Parliament (Holyrood), this city it actually smaller in size and population that Glasgow. It has a much different atmosphere and is more expensive than Glasgow, this is perhaps not a surprise given the presence of the government. Its historical centre and castle overlooking the city, as well as the Fringe festival make it world famous and attract many tourists, perhaps making the city centre difficult to get around. If you are moving here/visiting Edinburgh Waverley station will be your first obstacle. It has at least 4 exits, platform 1 and 20 are next to each, and nobody knows what is going on. That being said, there is much about this city that is wonderful, so here goes!


Food


My favourite places to get a cheap lunch are right off the historical Royal Mile, Tempting Tattie and the Baked Potato shop are within less than half a mile of each other and both offer good, nutritious warming lunches. Tempting Tattie is a little bit off the tourist trail and too old school to have a website, which tells you everything you need to know. For those of us who need to know where the good tea and coffee is, Edinburgh Press Club has a good selection and cake to go with it. Urban Angel is a good lunch place, again slightly off the beaten track but very popular at brunch and lunch time, with gluten free options available. Edinburgh is also home to Herbivore Kitchen, the BEST brownies you will ever eat, which can be purchased in the cafe, at festivals or through mail order. The only problem with Edinburgh’s city centre is the touristy spirit has began to take over many places, but that just means finding quality places to eat is all the more fun!


Entertainment


It’s the capital, the home of so many festivals they started an umbrella organisation. The book, fringe, international and tattoo are just a few of them. Let us not forget the biggest street party that is Hogmanay, the new year’s celebration, and it is clear why the Edinburgh is a cultural and arts powerhouse. Whether, arts, performance, theatre, crafts or books are your poison, you will find it here outside of festival season. The National Museum of Scotland (NMS), and the National Galleries (On the Mound, Portrait, Modern One&Two) are a good place if a calmer atmosphere is more to your liking. They have world class collections, and the Museum has Dolly (the first cloned sheep) stuffed and rotating in its science gallery (I am not joking).


Nature

Of course Arthur's seat and Calton Hill should be the first port of call for stunning views and a good workout. Don't forget that Edinburgh also has the advantage of being right on the shores of the North Sea, indeed the Shore, technically in Leith, has become a favourite re-gentrified spot of the city for evening walks and cute restaurants in a beautiful setting. For those who like to interact with nature the Royal Botanic Garden is a good day out, not far from the city centre. The Edinburgh Zoo is a wonderful way to spend a sunny day (as the animals tend to hide if it’s raining) and is reachable from the city by bus or tram. And yes, trams are the best form of public transport! Similarly to Glasgow train links to nature parks and hiking trails make day trips easy, the only thing that may stop you is the weather. Climate change projections predict an increase in waterfall and longer rainy season, so stop using plastic now if you ever want to see sunshine in Edinburgh again!

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