In July I went to Edinburgh for 4 days. We arrived Friday afternoon and searched for the B&B that we were staying at. After a rather long walk (since we took the long way) we found the place and dropped off our luggage. The place that we stayed at was call Kirkland House and I definitely recommend it.
After finding the B&B we went to Princess Street Gardens. This place is a large park right in the middle of the City (it kind of splits the old and new town). Next we wandered over to the City Chambers, the building that rests atop Mary Kings Close.
Mary Kings Close was a street that was built over in the 1600’s. According to many guidebooks the reason for this was that the close was hit particularity hard by the plague and it was built over for a type of quarantine. The tour guide assured us that there was no historical evidence to support this, but other guides in the city repeat the story. Nevertheless, the it had been closed off to the public till around 2002 and the tour was good.
That night we went on the haunted grave walk. It started right on the royal mile and ended up in the notorious covenanters prison. Since the tour began, they have recorded over 400 incidents of poltergeist activity from people taking the walk ranging from fainting to scratch marks appearing for no reason. The walk was excellent and the guide milked the hint of danger for all its worth. Whilst I didn’t experience any scratches or other “supernatural” activity, the walk was somewhat informative and vastly entertaining.
The next day consisted of a bus tour and Edinburgh Castle. The bus tour was entertaining and gave a good overview of the city. The castle is amazing. It offers a great view of the city, multiple museums and the Scottish crown jewels (pitiful in comparison to the English equivalents.) After spending quite a large amount of time at the castle, Jodie and I walked sown the Royal mile. This is probably the most tourist oriented areas where the prices are high and all they sell is souvenirs. We walked down to see the grave of Adam Smith (yeah I know I’m a econ geek.) After searching the entire cemetery, the very last site we checked was it (as it always goes.)
The only other thing to note for that day is that we stumbled upon an amazing restaurant near our B&B. We were both hesitant at first, seen ad the place was in the basement of a building, but it turned out to be the meal of the trip. The set menu was exquisite and very filling.
The next day we climbed to the top of the hill that contains Neilson’s monument. The view was impressive, especially of Arthur’s Seat (which would be a lot longer hike.) The sun was bearing down and we let ourselves be caught up in the weather. The whiskey tour was next on our list. Now the first thing to say about the tour is save your money and use it in the bar downstairs! The selection at the heritage centre is impressive and quite reasonable. I tried a few different types of rare malts and a few blends, while Jodie settled on some of the liqueurs. All in all, the bar was the best part.
Monday involved us sunbathing in Princess Street Garden till it was time to go. Except for a little rain the first day, the weather for the trip was exceptional, especially for Scotland. Overall an excellent trip mixed with touristy stuff and relaxation. I highly recommend Edinburgh as it is a beautiful city filled with history and friendly people.