Scott Hastings provides his top ten things to do while visiting Edinburgh...
- No visit to Edinburgh is complete without a visit to the number one visitor attraction in Scotland, Edinburgh Castle! Be there for the firing of the One O’Clock Gun.
- The Royal Mile – walk down one of Edinburgh’s most famous streets. From the Castle Esplanade to the Palace of Holyrood, you will be able to take in century’s old landmarks such as St Giles Cathedral, Mary King’s Close, John Knox’s house and even stop for a pint in The Worlds End pub!
- The Scottish Parliament – the home of Scottish Government. The new building is a personal favourite of mine.
- Carlton Hill – for the most outstanding views in Edinburgh take a short walk from the East End of Princes Street and up the steps on Waterloo Place. On top sits Edinburgh’s very own acropolis and other iconic buildings.
- George Street – Fantastic buildings adorn Edinburgh’s famous George Street. This area is great for shopping with many chic and contemporary stores. Dining options include, The Lounge, Tigerlilly, Ameroni and Contini. Make sure that you do not miss “The Dome” or ‘Le Monde’ and later in the evening head to The Opal Lounge for a bit of celebrity spotting.
- Charlotte Square and St Andrew’s Square - At either end of George Street admire the Georgian splendour of the buildings in Charlotte and St Andrew’s Square, the latter being open to the public. Bute House in Charlotte Square at the West End, is home to the First Minister of Scotland. Just off the square in Charlotte Lane you’ll find Sygn and Indigo Yard, two popular haunts for rugby supporters. At the East end of Charlotte Street is St Andrew’s Square. It is overlooked by Harvey Nicks and Edinburgh’s ‘Harrods of the North’, Jenners! Once you visited these iconic fashion stores relax in the sunshine and head to the Café Royal one of Edinburgh top bars or take in a meal at The Ivy, The Refinery, Gaucho or Dishoom.
- The Grassmarket – This area of the city has just had a facelift and makeover! It’s many bars, restaurants and café’s are great meeting points for couples and rugby supporters alike.
- Victoria Street – to the west end of the Grassmarket take a walk up my favourite street in Edinburgh. The sweeping cobbled street is beautiful and the boutique shops well worth a visit. Once you’ve reached the top you’ll be ready for a drink in Frankenstein’s just down from the City Library on George IV Bridge or if you like fish try Roy Brett’s restaurant, Ondine.
- Princes Street – Without doubt this is one of the most picturesque streets in the World. On the north side you have the shops whilst on the south side you have the beautiful Princes Street Gardens and the backdrop of the Castle and many buildings of the Royal Mile. At the bottom of The Mound pay a visit to the National Galleries of Scotland or consider a walk up the 287 steps of the Scott Monument for further panoramic views of Edinburgh. Once you have taken in the views head to Ryan’s Bar or The Huxley at the West End and if you are still hungry try Kyloe – a Steak house that serves great meat!
- The Royal Botanic Garden – to the North of the City and only a short 15minute walk from George Street lies the famous Royal Botanic Garden. As a Friendship Member of the Garden the tranquillity and vast range of plants is well worth a visit especially the majestic glass houses
If you would like to add any of these excursions onto your Lions V Japan trip please speak to a member of the team who will be happy to arrange for you.
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