Edinburgh, the capital city of Scotland, is a magical and romantic destination that never fails to enchant its visitors. With its historic architecture, atmospheric streets, and stunning views, Edinburgh is a city that captures the heart of anyone who sets foot in it. 

Whether you’re into history and cultural sites, love dining out, or want to enjoy a romantic getaway with your partner, Edinburgh has something for everyone. In this blog post, we will provide a comprehensive guide for travellers who plan to visit Edinburgh, highlighting the city’s top attractions, hidden gems, food and drink scenes, shopping destinations, and events and festivals. 

Let us take you on a journey to discover the charm and beauty of Scotland’s capital city!

And if you’re still planning your travels in the UK, why not consider our Luxury Motorhome and Campervan Hire in Scotland? Enjoy complete freedom and maximum comfort during your trip.

  • SHARE:

Getting to Edinburgh

Edinburgh is well-connected to the rest of the UK and international destinations, making it an easy destination to reach. Here are the main transportation options available:

Reaching Edinburgh by Plane: 

Edinburgh has its own airport, which is located only 8 miles from the city centre and connected by regular airport buses and the tram. Many airlines operate direct flights to Edinburgh from major cities across Europe and the UK, as well as from international destinations further afield.

Reaching Edinburgh by Train: 

Edinburgh has two major railway stations, Waverley and Haymarket, served by trains from across the UK. Train travel can be a comfortable and efficient way to reach Edinburgh, with many routes offering scenic views of the Scottish countryside. 

Reaching Edinburgh by Bus: 

Edinburgh is served by several long-distance bus operators, such as National Express and Megabus, which offer affordable travel options to and from major UK cities.

Reaching Edinburgh by Car:

Edinburgh is easily accessible via major road networks. The city is well-connected to other major UK cities such as Glasgow, Manchester, and London.

If you are exploring other places in Scotland or the UK during your visit, we recommend travelling by Motorhome.

Edinburgh’s Top Attractions

It will come as no surprise to hear that Edinburgh is packed with things to do. With its historic streets, the city is always atmospheric and wonderful to explore on foot. If travelling with family, many museums and attractions will appeal to all ages. And, if you’re in town as a couple or as a solo travelling, you’ll find an array of great places to stop for food or for drinks.

Below are some of our top Edinburgh attractions:

Edinburgh Castle: 

Perched atop an extinct volcano, Edinburgh Castle is the city’s most iconic landmark. The castle has played a central role in Scottish and British history, and visitors can explore its many exhibits and learn about its fascinating past. 

Highlights include the Crown Jewels, the Stone of Destiny, and the One O’Clock Gun. Opening hours are from 9:30 am to 6 pm (April-September) and 9:30 am to 5 pm (October-March), with admission prices starting at £17 for adults and £10.20 for children.

Royal Mile: 

The Royal Mile is a historic street that runs through the heart of Edinburgh’s Old Town, from Edinburgh Castle to the Palace of Holyroodhouse. 

The street is lined with mediaeval and Georgian buildings, and visitors can explore its many shops, cafes, and museums. Some top attractions on the Royal Mile include St Giles’ Cathedral, the Scotch Whisky Experience, and the Museum of Edinburgh.

If you enjoy spooky experiences, visit The Real Mary King’s Close, a tour experience that will take you below the Royal Mile and into a warren of hidden 16th-century streets.

  • SHARE:
  • SHARE:

Holyrood Palace: 

The Palace of Holyroodhouse is the official residence of the British monarch in Scotland and a fascinating attraction to explore. Visitors can tour the palace’s many rooms, including the State Apartments and the historic Abbey. The palace is open from 9:30 am to 4:30 pm (November-March) and 9:30 am to 6 pm (April-October), with admission prices starting at £16.50 for adults and £9.90 for children.

Arthur’s Seat

Located in Holyrood Park, Arthur’s Seat is a hill that offers breathtaking panoramic views of Edinburgh and the surrounding area. Visitors can hike to the summit, which is 251 metres high, and take in amazing views of the city below. The park is open daily from 7 am to dusk, and admission is free.

To make the most of your visit to these attractions, it’s worth researching and planning your itinerary. Some attractions offer timed-entry tickets, so it’s a good idea to book in advance to avoid queues and ensure you have enough time to explore each attraction fully.

Hidden Gens in Edinburgh

While Edinburgh is known for its iconic landmarks and historic attractions, the city also boasts many hidden gems worth exploring. Here are some of our favourites of the lesser-known attractions in Edinburgh:

Dean Village:

Located just a short walk from the city centre, Dean Village is a picturesque residential area that dates back to the 19th century. The village is known for its beautiful architecture and tranquil setting, with the Water of Leith running through its heart. Visitors can take a stroll along the riverbank and soak up the village’s peaceful atmosphere.

This is a must-visit spot for those who love taking Instagramable pictures when travelling. 

Calton Hill

While less well-known than Edinburgh Castle or Arthur’s Seat, Calton Hill is a fantastic vantage point that offers views over the city. Visitors can climb to the top of the hill and take in the stunning vistas of Edinburgh’s skyline, including the Scott Monument and the Balmoral Hotel. There are also several interesting monuments and buildings on Calton Hill, such as the famously unfinished National Monument and the Observatory.

Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh

The Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh is a peaceful oasis located just a short distance from the city centre. The garden features a vast collection of plants from around the world, as well as several beautiful glasshouses that are home to exotic species. Visitors can take a guided tour or explore the garden at their own pace, enjoying the tranquil beauty of this hidden gem.

  • SHARE:
  • SHARE:

Food and Drink in Edinburgh

Food and drink are an integral part of Edinburgh’s culture, with a wide range of restaurants, cafes, and bars offering something for every taste and budget. The city is known for its traditional Scottish dishes, such as haggis, neeps, and tatties, and its vibrant pub culture. For those looking for a fine dining experience, Edinburgh also boasts several Michelin-starred restaurants, including The Kitchin and Number One.

For a taste of traditional Scottish cuisine, visitors should try haggis, which is a savoury pudding made from sheep’s heart, liver, and lungs, mixed with oats and spices. It’s often served with neeps (turnips) and tatties (potatoes) and a drizzle of whisky sauce. Another popular dish is Cullen skink, a creamy soup made from smoked haddock and potatoes. 

Visitors should also try Scottish salmon, which is renowned for its high quality and delicate flavour.

In addition to its traditional cuisine, Edinburgh is also known for its vibrant pub culture, with many historic and cosy pubs dotted throughout the city. Visitors can enjoy a pint of local beer or whisky and sample Scottish pub fare such as fish and chips, haggis fritters, and Scotch eggs. 

For those looking for a more modern dining experience, Edinburgh offers a variety of international cuisine, from Indian and Italian to Japanese and Mexican.

At Zoom Motorhome Hire, we partner with local artisans, so guests can purchase locally-sourced, first-class food when booking their vehicle – it’ll be ready for you at the time of pickup.

Shopping in Edinburgh

Edinburgh is a shopper’s paradise, offering a diverse range of retail experiences. Some of the best shopping destinations in Edinburgh include Princes Street, Grassmarket, and Victoria Street. 

Princes Street is the main shopping thoroughfare in the city, with a mix of high street and designer stores, as well as several large department stores such as John Lewis and Marks & Spencer. 

Grassmarket, on the other hand, is a historic square that is home to a variety of independent shops, vintage stores, and artisanal boutiques. Visitors can find everything from vintage clothing to unique handmade crafts.

  • SHARE:
  • SHARE:

Festivals and Events in Edinburgh

Edinburgh is a city that knows how to celebrate, with a packed calendar of events and festivals throughout the year. Here are some of the top events and festivals in Edinburgh that you won’t want to miss:

Edinburgh Fringe Festival: 

The Edinburgh Fringe Festival is the largest arts festival in the world, with thousands of performers and artists descending on the city each August to showcase their talents. The festival features everything from comedy and theatre to music and cabaret, with events occurring in venues across the city.


Hogmanay is Scotland’s famous New Year’s Eve celebration, and Edinburgh is one of the best places in the world to experience it. The city hosts various events and festivities, including a spectacular firework display over Edinburgh Castle, a torchlight procession through the city centre, and live music and entertainment in Princes Street Gardens.

Accommodation in Edinburgh

Finally, we’ll touch on accommodation options for those visiting the city. Though, we should say from the start, we feel there’s no better choice of accommodation when visiting Scotland than in luxury Motorhomes or Campervans. With the freedom and flexibility to travel at your own pace, you can discover breathtaking landscapes, charming villages, and hidden gems across Scotland that you might otherwise miss.

However, if you’re staying in Edinburgh city for the duration of your stay, you will find every accommodation style available.

Edinburgh has a variety of hotels, ranging from luxurious five-star hotels to mid-range and budget options. Many hotels are located in the city centre, close to major tourist attractions, shopping areas, and restaurants. If budget isn’t a problem, staying in one of the city’s historic central hotels will provide the most luxury. 

For budget-conscious travellers, hostels are a popular option in Edinburgh. There are several hostels in the city centre and other neighbourhoods that offer shared and private rooms at affordable prices.

Then there are guesthouses and B&Bs, which are something of a British institution. These establishments offer a cosy and personalised experience, with many located in charming residential neighbourhoods such as Stockbridge and Newington.

Finally, if you really want to feel at home, you can consider renting an apartment. This will offer you a little more independence and is generally an excellent choice for larger groups and families. 

  • SHARE:

Embark on Your Scottish Adventure

With its rich culture, history, and beauty, Edinburgh offers a truly unforgettable experience. Long known as the Athens of the North, Edinburgh is unquestionably one of the most atmospheric and vibrant cities in the UK. 

So, begin booking your trip today! Whether you’re a history buff, a foodie, or a culture lover, you’re sure to find something that captures your heart in this magnificent city.

If you want to explore further afield while in Scotland, do consider travelling with Zoom Motorhome Hire. If you have any questions, please get in touch.