The Athens of the North!

This Easter holiday, to be precise, 5 to 8 April 2012, I went to Edinburgh, Scotland. And… here is my travel write up. Hopefully will help you if you want to go to Edinburgh and only able to spent a short time in there. 3 days will be quite a task to cover the lovely town of Edinburgh.

On 5 April 2012, I went to Edinburgh from London Kings Cross at 16:00 by East Coast train. Arrived at 20:25 at Haymarket station. Thankfully, the guest house where I stayed is very close to the station. If you want to know more about it, go to The St. Valery is a beautiful place to stay and not to pricey compared to others. You also get Wi-Fi for the whole stay for free.

The next day, we try to understand how the bus works. They will not give you any change, so better be prepared to have the exact amount of money. Day ticket cost £3.50. Making an itinerary would probably be a good idea, you can fit around 3 – 4 sights/ attractions a day. I do not end up following my itinerary, but the itinerary surely help on planning.

The first day we spent it on Edinburgh Castle, one of important residences of Scottish kings and queens. You can see the Scotland’s crown jewels (kept in the Crown Room since 1617) and Stone of Destiny here. Also, don’t forget that its panoramic views from the top is stunning.

Next is the Gilmerton Cove. You need to book for the tour before you got to Edinburgh. This is a very rare cave in a town and the origins are still disputed. No one could be sure about who was the one who made it or what is it made for, but it is worth a trip. Don’t forget to e-mail them to book the tour and mention how many persons will join you.

The last thing we did on the first day was climbing the Holyrood Park. It is very far to get to the top, but the breathtaking views from there is one to not miss – ever. If you are fit and well, do get to the top and find the Arthur’s seat, the summit of the park.

7 April 2012 – There were quite a lot of things that we did this day because of the fact that we need to return the next day. First thing we did was taking a traditional Scottish family photo in the place right outside the Edinburgh Castle. After that, we walked to the Princes Street Gardens, a garden that lies right beneath Edinburgh Castle. Other than a place for the people to take a peaceful walk, this garden is also a place to hold concerts.

Next is Camera Obscura and World of Illusions. This place is near to Edinburgh Castle too, right after the place where we took photos. Other than many quirky exhibitions such as swapping your head and nose with other people or making your body look smaller or bigger, this place also offers 360 degrees rooftop panoramas with free telescopes. Vortex Tunnel will make your head dizzy. Camera Obscura show is truly a rare experience. You can spy on people in the city and even pick them up with your hand!

The last thing we did that day is visiting the Palace of Holyroodhouse, a place where HM Queen Elizabeth II stay when visiting Scotland. You can see state apartments and the ruins of Holyrood Abbey. All with an audio tour! There is also Queen’s Gallery – see the paintings, drawings, furniture, jewellery and others. The staircase is absolutely beautiful.

8 April 2012 – It is probably a good choice to visit Royal Yacht Britannia on the last day of your trip. This ship is stunning, consider being at the Titanic. Only less grandeur. This ship is used for several honeymoons (including Prince and Princess of Wales) and important visits from foreign politicians/ leaders. Furthermore, we went back to the area of Edinburgh Castle and the Royal Mile to buy some gifts and wonder around the Old Town (Grassmarket) and then made our way back to Haymarket station, wait for an hour at Starbucks coffee, and get on the train to go back to London and arrive there at 22:15.

From many amazing panoramic sceneries, green hills and old buildings, Edinburgh is truly a precious town to visit.

1 comment
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