Just got back from the Fourth of July weekend in Edinburgh and it was pretty amazing, wet, but awesome! It took a little over seven hours driving, shout out to hubby and my friend Carmen for doing all the hard work. I will admit that I slept a lot of the way, but it only left me more pumped to walk all over the gorgeous city of Edinburgh.
- One of our first tastes of Scotland was at The Doric, the oldest gastropub in Edinburgh, built in the 17th century. To date, this is probably the oldest place I have ever eaten in my life. They have a bar in the downstairs area but the upper floor is a full restaurant with rustic style tables and large windows that overlook the street below. There were so many yummy things on the menu, I had lots of trouble picking what I wanted. Here’s the starters that I had as a meal: the mussels and crab ravioli. I couldn’t stop eating the white sauce from both dishes with the bread at the table.
- Royal Mile Market: Tron Market, was definitely aimed at tourists, but we went anyway. From the outside it looks like an old church building, with its stained glass windows still intact. Past those painted doors, however, was a crowded room packed with tiny, niche stalls for jewelry, locally made soaps, coffee, and art. Hubby found himself having heart palpitations at the sight of handmade swords, which he spent lots of time contemplating. After many minutes of asking questions, doubting himself and picking up nearly every one of them, he decided on Anduril, a fantasy sword modeled after Aragorn’s from the Lord of the Rings. He was so excited with his purchase, it should be reaching us by post any day now.
- Auld Reekie ghost tour: This isn’t my usual idea of how to tour a city that is new to me, but since Rose really wanted to go, we all got tickets. Our guide was named Darren, a scruffy, woodsy kind of man that looked nice enough, but also might be full of secrets. He took us on a tour at street level first, telling us about the monuments around town and setting the scene: talking about urbanization of Edinburgh during the turn of the 20th century, the boom in population and overcrowding which eventually led to a lot of crime in the area. From this well-lit portion, I learned that street names that end in Close (like street or road), used to be closed on one end, similar to a dead end. In Edinburgh, however, these streets have mostly been opened on the other end for traffic and to help out pedestrians.
- National Museum of Scotland: What’s super cool about this museum is that it’s FREE to get in and the exhibits are really diverse. They do recommend that you donate, but if you’re just there to see some things, that’s cool too. One of the best parts that I remember was walking to the older building and checking out the rooftop terrace. The elevator up was running in slow-motion, but the view was really nice.
- Museum of Edinburgh: We didn’t get any decent pictures from here, but it was another FREE museum. It had a lot of information on the construction of Edinburgh, its founding and the history of its people. There was a large collection of artifacts from different time periods leading up the modern age: silverware, glassware, and pottery.
- Scott Monument, is the largest monument to a writer, in the world and was made in the name of Sir Walter Scott. We climbed all 287 steps to the top of the tall tower-like building. It was quite windy at the top, so all of our selfies came out with my hair in a bird’s nest. What we didn’t anticipate was how narrow the staircases were once we’d get to the top. The Mr. had some trouble squeezing his wide shoulders through and it also made the stairs one-way routes. It was fun, dizzying building to explore.
- Bramble: We were intending to get out of the rain and have a nice drink before dinner. After doing some research on Tripadvisor, the hubby found a local lounge. We almost missed it, as it was beneath street level; we had to take a small stairway down and find the golden sign outside of the door. I really liked the atmosphere of the place: dimly lit with some chill vibes playing the background. It seemed like a mix between a bar and someone’s newly finished basement which made it feel almost like we were drinking at home. The service was amazing and the bartender was really knowledgeable. Here’s a picture of one set of our cocktails (Bramble, Red Rum, Brightside and Mint 500) which were delicious. I really would like to try more of their drinks menu next time we are in town. Also we found out the menu changes seasonally, so there will be different drinks to try next time.
Hope you enjoyed my really long Scotland post, figured it would be better to put it into one instead of splitting it all up by each day.
Let me know if you have any places in Scotland that you can recommend for next time.
Time for bed now.
the tan bunny ❤
PS. The featured image is of Arthur’s Seat, which is something we definitely have to visit, forgot our hiking boots this time.