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Things to do in Edinburgh

Medieval history meets Georgian elegance in a city that knows how to throw a party – it’s a unique combination, but an Edinburgh holiday means a guaranteed good time. Scotland’s capital city is bursting at the seams with must-see attractions and some of the UK’s best events

Book your flight to Edinburgh today and you’ll soon be soaking up the majesty of the Royal Mile, shopping till you drop on Princes Street and partying the night away at one of Edinburgh’s many festivals.

Things to do in Edinburgh
Walk the Royal Mile

Walk the Royal Mile

A walk up the Royal Mile is the perfect introduction to Edinburgh. Starting at the magnificent Edinburgh Castle, follow the cobbles and you’ll come across some of the city’s most famous attractions including the Scotch Whisky Experience, St Giles’ Cathedral, Scottish Parliament and finally, the Palace of Holyroodhouse – the Queen’s official residence in Scotland.

Explore Edinburgh Castle

Explore Edinburgh Castle

Perched on top of an extinct volcano at the top of the Royal Mile, the ancient Edinburgh Castle is the city’s most popular tourist attraction. It became Scotland's chief royal castle in the Middle Ages and is now home to the Scottish Crown Jewels, the Stone of Destiny, the famous 15th century gun Mons Meg, the One O' Clock Gun and the National War Museum of Scotland.

Be wowed by the Edinburgh Military Tattoo

Be wowed by the Edinburgh Military Tattoo

Edinburgh Castle is also home to the Edinburgh Military Tattoo – one of Scotland’s most iconic events. Each August, hundreds of thousands of people from all over the world flock to Edinburgh for a spectacular showcase of the world’s best military bands, pipers and drummers, dancers and theatre groups. Each 90-minute show ends with a performance of the haunting Lone Piper and a dazzling fireworks display, making it an unforgettable experience.

Take the kids to the National Museum of Scotland

Take the kids to the National Museum of Scotland

Visiting Edinburgh with your family? They’ll love the National Museum of Scotland. You’ll find treasures from all over the world – from meteorites to mummies and monsters of the deep – in galleries covering the natural world, world cultures, art and design, and science and technology. The brilliant Scottish galleries are a fun way to learn about life in Scotland from its very beginnings to the present day.

Discover the next big thing at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe

Discover the next big thing at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe

Anyone who’s anyone in the world of theatre and comedy would be mad to miss the world’s largest arts festival. Anything goes here, and the streets of Edinburgh are transformed with buskers, street theatre and live entertainment filling every cobblestone. It’s a great opportunity to spot the next big comedy, theatre or film star – the Fringe helped launch the careers of Hugh Grant, Eddie Izzard, Robin Williams, Stephen Fry, Hugh Laurie and many more.

Exciting experiences

Edinburgh City Hop-on Hop-off Tour

Edinburgh City Hop-on Hop-off Tour

With great views from the top of the bus, strategically placed stops at 24 locations and an interesting commentary, this truly is the best way to see the sights of Edinburgh. You can hop-on and off as many times as you like aboard this open-top double-decker bus. Tour highlights include the Edinburgh Castle, Palace of Holyrood House, the historic Royal Mile and Our Dynamic Earth.

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Edinburgh Pass

Edinburgh Pass

Visiting Scotland's capital city has never been easier with the Edinburgh Pass. With this electronic smart card you can experience quick and hassle-free entrance to attractions. From museums and historic buildings to breathtaking art exhibitions and interactive visitor attractions, fine dining and shopping - you can use the Edinburgh Pass to make the most of your trip to Edinburgh. There is something for everyone, with free entry to over 30 of the city's most exciting attractions.

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The Royal Yacht Britannia

The Royal Yacht Britannia

For over forty years, the Royal Yacht sailed over one million miles on nearly a thousand official visits for the British Royal Family. Now berthed in Edinburgh's historic port of Leith, Britannia is a fascinating attraction. Here you can view displays and see historic photographs that detail Britannia's fascinating past. Tour highlights include the State Drawing Room, The Queen's Bedroom, the Sun Lounge and the Admiral's cabin. Britannia is berthed alongside the stylish Ocean Terminal shopping centre.

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Oban And The West Highlands Day Trip From Edinburgh

Oban And The West Highlands Day Trip From Edinburgh

This breathtaking area of Scotland contains coastlines, moorlands and mountains, which encompass the dramatic beauty of the West Highlands. Explore the cosy, wee villages of Oban, Luss and Inveraray and take in the scenery. Pass the hauntingly beautiful ruins of Kilchum Castle on the shores of Loch Awe, and hear tales of the Campbell Clan who once claimed the land as a stronghold. Loch Awe also follows the Pass of Brander, where Robert the Bruce (Scotland's heroic King) fought many a fierce battle in bygone times.

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Murder and Mystery Walking Tour of Edinburgh

Murder and 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 an creepy courtyards of the Old Town. Your guide leads you through the haunted alleyways and dark courtyards of Old Town Edinburgh telling tales of executions and torture, ghosts and witchcraft, and the notorious 19th century trade of body snatching.

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Edinburgh weather

Prepare for the weather before your holiday

Average seasonal temperatures°C/°F
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • 12°Jun
  • 14°Jul
  • 14°Aug
  • 12°Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Average monthly rainfall (mm)
  • 78
  • 55
  • 53
  • 51
  • 63
  • 54
  • 95
  • 75
  • 67
  • 92
  • 93
  • 80
Average daily sunshine (hours)
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 6
  • 5
  • 5
  • 4
  • 3
  • 2
  • 2

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