You've visited Arthur's Seat in Holyrood Park, the extinct volcano rising out of the earth amongst the buildings of Edinburgh. Although it isn't May the 1st, you washed your face in the dew there, just as is tradition for young women to do so on May Day. You definitely feel more beautiful as a result – after all, you're an optimist. You've taken an actor-led historical tour of the historical Edinburgh Castle, the city's premier tourist destination and enjoyed the sweeping views of the city – actors dressing up as dead monarchs add just the right amount of novelty to your history lesson. You've even been thoroughly intrigued by the sprawling exhibitions at the National Museum of Scotland. Although a few of the above are actually free and definitely options to visit, for those who like to seek out something more atypical, Edinburgh has plenty to offer the discerning traveller.
Without even opening your wallet...
You will be taken on a trip as you visit the statue and memorial of Greyfriars Bobby, the little Skye Terrier dog at Greyfriars – many know his story. He was the loyal canine who won the hearts of the world by staying by his master's grave for 14 years. The museum is open from April through October, and volunteer guides are a great source to learn more about Bobby, as well as the general area.
Instead of Edinburgh's numerous comedy improvisation projects that come to mind...
Why not join a sizeable list of famous visitors and catch a film at the Cameo Cinema? One of the oldest and best of Scottish independent picture houses, and one of the theatres used by the Edinburgh Film Fest, it is said to be one of Quentin Tarantino's favourites! Even if you're not in the mood to see a movie, visit the Cameo Bar for a drink and rub shoulders with the serious film buffs that frequent.
Instead of expensive dining options...
Spend a day relaxing in the Princes Street Gardens, picnicking in the sunshine as Edinburgh Castle towers over you. The beautiful greenery and the skyline of the nearby Old Town make for a picture-perfect afternoon. Check out Ross Fountain while you're there. Also a postcard-ready scene. As for food, there are numerous options nearby you can source it from, or make your own if you prefer!
For a little dose of history...
Visit Duddingston Village and get a peek into how people lived in the 12th century. From a louping-on-stane which was a platform which allowed wives to mount horses behind their husbands without exposing too much, to the Sheep Heid Inn which is supposedly Scotland's oldest pub, this old-world village is one not to miss if you enjoy learning about how people used to live.
Your smart accommodation choices have not decimated your budget...
All the better to spend on other things! Take a day trip out to Loch Ness. Although it's nice to avoid to tourist destinations, it would be remiss of us to let you visit Scotland and not pay Nessie a visit. Will you be the one the introverted sea monster recluse chooses to reveal herself to? After all, you are a very optimistic and positive person.
If you have a couple of days free, hire a car and venture into the gorgeous wilderness of Glencoe. Drive through the best of the Scottish Highlands until you arrive in a paradise of mountains, ridges, waterfalls and rapid rivers. For a truly magical experience, stay a few nights in the valley to truly immerse yourself in everything the region has to offer. Glencoe is absolute bliss for lovers of nature and adventure – lose yourself amongst the sheer vastness of the landscape. There is so much on offer: hiking, mountain biking, white water rafting, sailing, kayaking, archery, canyoning, fishing and rock-climbing. If none of that sounds appealing to you, taking it at a slower pace on a lush green golf course is also an option! Alpine adventure sports are available in the colder months.
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17 Mayfield Gardens
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The Royal Mile
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35 Drumsheugh Gardens