Soaring high above its namesake city on an extinct volcanic hill known as Castle Rock, Edinburgh Castle is often more spectacular than expected, giving you a glimpse of all there is to see, do and experience in this wonderful city on your Globus tour.
We all want to see as much as of the city as possible, so it’s time to prioritize!
One must see is Crown Jewels and the Scottish National War Memorial. Make sure to stay and hear the One O’Clock Gun, which gives the ships in port something by which to set their clocks. It seems like an arbitrary time, but if you ask, you’ll receive a typical Scottish humor response: “Because it costs us eleven fewer rounds than it would at noon.”
A walk down Royal Mile, the main thoroughfare that runs through Old Town Edinburgh, will give you time to search out traditional Scottish goods like shortbread, a lamb’s wool sweater and an umbrella (always be prepared here!).
A short side trip off the Royal Mile to a side alley puts you inside the Writers’ Museum, which is three floors connected by an old winding staircase, each floor devoted to one of Scotland’s three great writers: Sir Walter Scott, Robert Louis Stevenson and Robert Burns. The museum is a bibliophile’s dream—full of manuscripts, first editions, portraits and the printing press on which Scott’s Waverley Novels were first produced.
Having experienced Edinburgh’s Old Town, it’s time to turn to the cosmopolitan side of the city and head to Princes Street, the prestigious shopping district with stores on one side and open green spaces and the river on the other.
Your first stop, coffee at The Elephant House, where J.K. Rowling famously spent hours penning “Harry Potter.” Spend a moment browsing in Jenners, the well-known department store, and then head to an unforgettable dinner.
The Witchery is nestled in a dramatic 16th-century building at the gates of Edinburgh Castle. Surrounded by antique gilded candlesticks and opulent red-leather upholstery, start with the pea and mint velouté accompanied by scrumptious cheddar scones from the Isle of Mull.
For the main course, delve into the delicious heritage tomato tart made with mascarpone custard and tomato jelly. And if you’re still feeling full of energy to explore, checkout the music at Sandy Bell’s, a traditional Scottish pub near the University of Edinburgh. It’s jam-packed with locals, sipping delicious dark beer listening to the giddy screech of fiddles, you’ll feel like you’ve found the soul of Scotland, right there in that cozy little pub.