Explore our city - Top 5 things to do in Edinburgh
Edinburgh is a historic and vibrant city...small enough to explore on foot, but big enough to keep you entertained!
Planning to turn your Open Day visit into a weekend trip? Here are some suggestions to make the most of your stay:
1. Take a bus tour of Edinburgh
Join an Edinburgh City Sightseeing tour. Hop on-hop off and discover the best of Scotland's Capital with Edinburgh Bus Tours. Explore sights including Edinburgh Castle, Palace of Holyrood and The Royal Yacht Britannia, and save your legs from walking up and down all those hills!
2. Visit Edinburgh Castle
Edinburgh Castle has played a pivotal role in Scottish history, both as a royal residence – King Malcolm Canmore (r 1058–93) and Queen Margaret first made their home here in the 11th century – and as a military stronghold. The castle last saw military action in 1745; from then until the 1920s it served as the British army's main base in Scotland. Today it is one of Scotland's most atmospheric and most popular tourist attractions. Definitely worth seeing if you are in the city. The castle towers above the city, affording visitors panoramic views to the north, south, east and west. It's history is turbulent and tragic and definitely worth looking into while there.
Top tip: Go in the morning or book your tickets in advance online. This way you'll avoid the massive queues of tourists standing in line to get in. There are always loads of tour bus groups arriving later in the day and it can take some time to get your tickets last minute. Also if you are there at 1pm, be sure to cover your ears…
“Had a great time in Edinburgh and no trip could be complete without visiting the castle. It's in great condition for its age and plenty of history and facts to be learned.” (TripAdvisor)
3. Climb Arthur's Seat
Holyrood Park, Edinburgh, is blessed with a little bit of wilderness in the heart of the city. The former hunting ground of Scottish monarchs, the park covers 263 hectares of varied landscape, including crags, moorland and loch, and the 251m summit of Arthur's Seat. Holyrood Park can be circumnavigated by car or bike along Queen's Drive. If the weather is right be sure to set aside a couple of hours to take the hike up Arthurs Seat to get marvellous views across the city and see the Scottish Parliament from a birds eye view.
“Fantastic 360 degree view of Edinburgh! Hike is relatively easy except for a few steep slopes near the top. Go for sunrise or sunset. It can get hot during midday as all trails are totally exposed.” (TripAdvisor)
4. Take a Murder Mystery Walking Tour of Edinburgh
Take a look at Edinburgh's dark side, including tales of witchcraft, plague and torture on this Murder and Mystery Walking Tour of Edinburgh. Visit the scenes of many horrific tortures, murders and supernatural happenings as you walk along eerie alleyways and creepy courtyards of the Old Town. Your ghostly guide will blend history with humour and facts with fables, while "jumper-ooters" provide guaranteed ghastly appearances.
5. Visit the National Museum of Scotland
For a free day out you can spend literally hours in the National Museum of Scotland, located on Chambers Street come and find the amazing exhibits, fun for all the family.
“I'm not really a museum person, but I could have spent all day in this one! A wonderful collection of exhibits covering the history of Scotland.” (TripAdvisor)