Edinburgh, the capital city of Scotland, is a captivating blend of history, culture, and breathtaking landscapes. During my recent two-day visit, I was spellbound by the city’s charm, from its iconic castle perched on an ancient volcano to its bustling streets filled with shops offering treasures like cashmere stoles and shawls. Join me as I take you through the highlights of my trip, including a visit to the historic Edinburgh Castle, a delightful dining experience at Dishoom restaurant, and a glimpse into the world of Scottish shopping.
Attractions to See:
Edinburgh offers a plethora of attractions that cater to every traveler’s interests.
- Edinburgh Castle: A visit to Edinburgh would be incomplete without exploring its iconic castle, which dominates the city’s skyline. Perched high on Castle Rock, this historic fortress offers a glimpse into Scotland’s rich history. Inside, you’ll find the Crown Jewels, the Stone of Destiny, and the historic Great Hall. The panoramic views of the city from the castle’s battlements are simply breathtaking, especially at sunset. Be sure to check the castle’s opening hours and admission fees in advance to plan your visit accordingly. I had purchased the castle tickets online to avoid the crowd when purchasing onsite.
- The Royal Mile: Start your exploration on the Royal Mile, a historic street connecting Edinburgh Castle to the Palace of Holyroodhouse. As you walk along this cobbled path, you’ll encounter charming shops, street performers, and historic landmarks like St. Giles’ Cathedral, a masterpiece of Gothic architecture.
- Palace of Holyroodhouse: Located at the end of the Royal Mile, this palace is the official residence of the British monarch in Scotland. Explore its historic rooms and beautiful gardens while learning about its royal history.
- Arthur’s Seat: For nature lovers and hikers, Arthur’s Seat, an extinct volcano, offers a rewarding climb with panoramic views of the city. It’s a serene escape from the bustling city center.
- National Museum of Scotland: This museum showcases Scotland’s rich history, culture, and natural heritage through a diverse range of exhibits, from ancient artifacts to modern innovations.
- Scottish National Gallery: Art enthusiasts will appreciate this gallery’s impressive collection of European paintings, including works by famous artists like Van Gogh, Monet, and Turner.
Dining at Dishoom:
During our stay in Edinburgh, we had the pleasure of dining at Dishoom, a delightful restaurant that transports you to the Irani cafés of Bombay. The warm and inviting atmosphere, along with a menu that pays homage to the diverse culinary traditions of India, made it a memorable experience. We savored dishes like Chicken Cranberry Biriyani, Mattar Paneer, Murgh Malai, Assam Tea and finished with a kheer. Dishoom’s attention to detail and excellent service added to the overall charm of our visit. This restaurant is quite popular across many parts of London and Scotland so advance reservations is highly recommended. Without a reservation, there is a wait time of minimum 2 hours 🙂
Shopping and Souvenirs:
Edinburgh is a shopper’s paradise, and if you’re looking for exquisite souvenirs, cashmere stoles and shawls are a must-buy. You’ll find a wide range of options in various colors and designs at shops along the Royal Mile and Princes Street. These luxurious, soft, and warm accessories make for perfect gifts or personal keepsakes. While you’re at it, don’t forget to explore other Scottish treasures such as tartan scarves and handmade crafts.
Commute Options in Edinburgh:
While in Edinburgh, we primarily opted for walking as our preferred mode of transportation within the city. The compact and pedestrian-friendly layout of Edinburgh makes it convenient to explore many attractions on foot. It allows you to soak in the city’s ambiance, discover hidden gems, and easily access landmarks such as the Royal Mile and Princes Street.
The two-day visit to Edinburgh was a delightful experience filled with history, culture, and shopping treasures. From exploring the Royal Mile to visiting the majestic Edinburgh Castle, indulging in the culinary delights at Dishoom, and strolling through the city’s charming streets, this city has left an indelible mark on my heart. If you’re planning a trip to this captivating Scottish capital, don’t miss the opportunity to immerse yourself in its rich history, stunning views, and, of course, some luxurious cashmere souvenirs. Edinburgh truly offers something for every type of traveler, and I can’t wait to return to explore other parts of Scotland (Glasgow, Isle of Sky, Loch Ness) sometime in near future.