Last month I headed up to Edinburgh for a few days. Here’s the lowdown on where we stayed, what we ate and where we went.
Where We Stayed
We stayed at The Inn On The Mile for 2 nights in one of their Royal Mile rooms with a big comfy bed and a bath. When it’s -2 outside, you fully appreciate a bath to warm back up after walking around the Christmas markets. It was a lovely location right in the heart of The Royal Mile, so really easy to get everywhere and there were some nice little extras that you wouldn’t get with the chain hotels. A welcome drink, which we enjoyed later that evening listening to the acoustic guy who was the live music entertainment for the night. They have live music every night in the pub downstairs and no, you can’t hear anything from the room if you want an early night – though we were on the third floor. The boutique style really appeals to us both and the rooms had quirky little touches. GHDs in the room was an absolute dream – everyone knows Edinburgh is pretty windy since the city is on a hill. Caramel wafers instead of biscuits to go with your cuppa, The White Company smellies and his and hers sinks made getting ready so much easier. I’d definitely stay again!
What We Did
I’ve been to Edinburgh so many times now that I know the city like the back of my hand. However, there were some sights I’d still not seen, so they were top of the list. Camera Obscura is right by Edinburgh Castle and well worth a visit. Full of illusions and interactive displays, we both really enjoyed it as two 20 somethings. The rooftop gives you such a good view over the city – if you don’t go on a foggy day like we did, oops! Make sure you catch one of the shows to get a guide around Edinburgh and experience the Camera Obscura in all its glory. I finally visited The National Museum of Scotland – and not for a drinks reception like I had previously. There’s so much in the museum to see, I’d highly recommend a visit and make sure you go to the rooftop too! No trip to Edinburgh is complete without walking up to the castle (though we didn’t go in) and taking a trip through Princes Street Gardens.
Where We Ate
A coffee stop at Wellington Coffee provided a little caffeine boost mid-afternoon before we went past the designer shops and I lusted after everything in Burberry. Our first night, we’d already booked up to visit The Blackbird, a gastropub/bar that’s a little out of the city centre. When we arrived and were shown to our seats, we both commented on how nicely decorated it was and the cosy feel. We shared tiger prawns to start which were delicious, followed by steak pie and twice cooked chips for Lewis and chicken for me. The presentation was great and the flavours worked so well together, pumpkin gnocchi and walnuts with creme fraiche. It would’ve been rude not to taste the dessert menu so we shared the belgian waffles served with caramelised banana, muscavado, flamed spiced rum and vanilla ice cream. The perfect boozy dessert and definitely one to share, because it was super sweet! The cocktails there were great too and they’re pretty well known for their quirky concoctions and a lovely beer garden outside – though maybe not when it’s below freezing! Our second evening we ate at Noks Kitchen, a family run thai restaurant in Stockbridge. Listed pretty highly on trip advisor, we were both blown away by the flavours, the service and just how lovely the restaurant was. My Massaman curry was served in the cutest copper pot and L’s stir fry was in a prawn cracker dish. Our meal came to around £40 for starter, two mains, sides and drinks which is so reasonable too. We’ve already said we’ll be visiting again! For the cocktail fans, Panda & Sons is a must visit. This speakeasy style cocktail bar is disguised as a barber shop and you’ll find comfy seats and drinks a plenty right through the bookcase. Badger & Co was another lovely coffee stop but this bistro pub had a good menu whether you want snacks and some cocktails, or a full sit down meal. I had an amazing hot chocolate in there and loved The Wind In The Willows theme – it was the birthplace of the author, Kenneth Grahame. We also picked up churros from the Christmas market stalls and indulged in some mulled wine. Why not?
Visiting Edinburgh in the lead up to Christmas is just magical. All the lights, the markets, the food – it’s pretty special and I think Edinburgh is one of my favourite cities anyway. Everything looks better with twinkly lights though, right?
Have you been to Edinburgh?
The Blackbird kindly provided a complimentary meal for us during our visit. All photos and words are my own. Please ask permission to use any for marketing/other content.