things to do in Edinburgh

What's there to do while you're here?

So you’ve heard of Scotland’s capital city, Edinburgh. Maybe you think it’s all about whisky, shortbread, tartan, and a castle perched up on a big rock? These do exist but, it hardly scratches the surface of Edinburgh. If you’re not too sure what else this amazing city has to offer, we have you covered!

There’s something for everyone in Edinburgh, from sightseeing, exploring, and entertainment to museums galleries, and theatres.

We’re called the festival city for a reason. From the middle of May until the end of August we have the Children’s Festival, Film Festival, Science Festival, Jazz & Blues Festival, Art Festival, International Festival, Festival Fringe, Military Tattoo, and last but not least, the Book Festival. We even have a Craft Beer Festival. 🙂

The city has a massive selection of museums and galleries housing an extensive and impressive range of art, from the contemporary to the classic, many theatres, the famous Usher Hall, and the Playhouse for all the West End musicals.

We have major tourist attractions such as, Camera Obscura, Dynamic Earth, Edinburgh Zoo, Palace of Holyrood House (the Queen’s official residence in Edinburgh), The Royal Botanic Garden, Royal Yacht Britannia, The Scotch Whisky Experience, and of course our own little castle on a big rock (Edinburgh Castle).

Edinburgh is fortunate to have many beautiful parks and hills (7 hills in the city and many more on the outskirts), with Arthur’s Seat the number one tourist attraction in Edinburgh right near the centre of the city. There are also a number of “secret gardens dotted about Edinburgh for you to find and explore. If cycling is your thing, you can hire the Just Eat bikes all over the city and make use of the extensive network of cycle paths throughout the city.

Portobello Beach and Promenade is an extremely popular spot to visit, particularly from Spring to Autumn, with its cafes, bars, Victorian traditional baths and Turkish Baths, themselves one of Edinburgh’s ‘best-kept secrets’, and the amusement arcade.

David Nicoll

Edinburgh Castle

Edinburgh Castle

Edinburgh Castle is one of the most exciting historic sites in Western Europe. Set in the heart of Scotland’s dynamic capital city, it is sure to capture your imagination. The scenery will take your breath away.

There are many ways to experience Edinburgh Castle. Go straight to an exciting part, follow an itinerary, or allow an audio guide to show you around.

Dynamic Earth Sabre Toothed Tiger

Dynamic Earth

Dynamic Earth is a 5-star visitor attraction situated at the heart of Edinburgh’s World Heritage Site. Sitting within an award-winning and iconic tented structure, Dynamic Earth was the UK’s first Millennium Commission funded project to open to the public and tells the story of planet Earth and how our Earth works, how life has evolved on its differing environments and the future challenges faced by planet Earth.

National Museum of Scotland

National Museum of Scotland

The world-class collections will take you on a journey through the history of Scotland, the wonders of nature and diverse cultures from around the globe.
Discover scientific breakthroughs and marvel at exquisite art, design and fashion from across the centuries. From the tiniest creatures to towering spacecraft and ancient times to the present day, there are thousands of stories to discover.
The Real Mary Kings Close Character Guides

The Real Mary King's Close

Opened in 2003, The Real Mary King’s Close is an award-winning five star attraction located in the heart of Edinburgh’s Old Town. On a one hour social history tour, guests explore this unique warren of hidden streets and spaces. Experience over 400 years of history, and discover the stories of your character guide. From myths and legends, to the deadly plague epidemic, and a famous royal visitor – there’s a myriad of tales just waiting to be told.