Why stay in Edinburgh?
Edinburgh, the capital of Scotland, is a beautiful city. If you're in the mood for a festival, Edinburgh is the place to go. The two largest happen during the festival-filled summer - the Edinburgh Military Tattoo is an impressive show of Scotland's military in full dress regalia, along with some of the best bagpipe and drum corps performances you'll ever hear (if you like bagpipes, that is). The other big festival is the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, which, as the name suggests, is more on the alternative side. The city is absolutely bursting during both of these (and many other) festivals, so if you're planning to attend you'll need to book your stay well in advance.
Some of the Edinburgh hostels are:
- Budget Backpackers - Located not far from the castle and the Royal mile, this hostel boasts four kitchen areas and 36 showers.
- smartcityhostels Edinburgh - Midway between Holyroodhouse and the castle, just off the Royal Mile, this hostel is ideally situated for most of your sight-seeing needs. All rooms at smartcityhostels are en-suite.
- Castle Rock Hostel - This hostel is, as the name suggests, right beside the castle on a relatively quiet street that's still only steps away from the city's great nightlife.
- Royal Mile Backpackers - Right on the Royal Mile, this hostel says it's small and cozy.
If none of these Edinburgh hostels seems like it was meant for you, be sure to peruse the other listings on this page - there are plenty of hostels (some more like bed and breakfasts) in neighborhoods away from the Royal Mile as well, giving you an even more peaceful getaway from the city center.
Tourists might not venture too far off the Royal Mile, but if they did they'd see a vibrant city that's successfully blending the old and new. There are parts of the city that feel like quiet villages, parts that look like the city is still in medieval times, and parts that don't stop until the sun comes up. Whatever you're looking for, you can find it in Edinburgh - you might even learn how to pronounce it just like the locals do by the time you leave.
The heavily touristed Royal Mile is full of visitors for a reason - it's the old town's center, dating back to the 16th century. At one end you've got the imposing Edinburgh Castle, brilliantly constructed so it looks like literally it's growing out of the rock, and at the other you've got the Palace of Holyroodhouse, a royal residence which was once the home of Mary Queen of Scots. The castle especially is worth a visit, and the entire length of the road between the two is charming.
There are several outstanding museums and galleries in Edinburgh, including the Museum of Scotland and Royal Museum. The city is also home to a few lovely cathedrals, including St. Giles' Cathedral on the Royal Mile. Just outside the downtown area you can climb to the top of Arthur's Seat (known locally as Ard-na-Said), an extinct volcano, for a lovely view.
And if you need anything else for your visit to Edinburgh, you're in the right place. You can search for international airfare to Edinburgh as well as read up on all the things to see and do once you get there in our Edinburgh Travel Guide.
And bring us back a deep fried Mars bar, won't you?