What it has to offer:
With something to explore in every corner, Edinburgh is a city full of life, culture and steeped in history. The perfect blend of old and new, this city is an ideal destination for almost any traveller. From botanical gardens to award-winning bars, you can lose yourself for the next 48 hours in the Scottish capital.
Where to stay:
Undoubtedly a booking at number 41, House of Gods should be at the top of your list. The luxurious and extravagantly designed rooms with set the perfect tone for your 48 hours exploring. Classic room designs are inspired by Versailles and are, as the website says, ‘unapologetically extravagant and the ultimate hedonistic hideaway for two’. Book directly with the hotel and receive complimentary access to a full butler service, bedtime milk & cookies, luxury breakfast hamper and a bar tab for Lilith’s Lounge.
Gleneagles Townhouse is situated in St. Andrews Square and boasts 33 uniquely designed rooms, an all-day restaurant, roof terrace and members’ club. Each room offers travellers a sanctuary from the hustle and bustle of everyday city life with design described as ‘a contemporary take on Georgian elegance’. Enjoy a drink at the bar or a snack in the all-day restaurant. Remember to book on their website to get 20% off.
Where to eat:
Holder of a Michelin Bib Gourmand, the award-winning Scran & Scallie Edinburgh’s leading gastropub owned by Scottish chefs Dominic Jack and Michelin-starred Tom Kitchin. The pub is renowned for its take on seasonal classics with ingredients sourced from the very best local Scottish suppliers. You can enjoy dishes such as Whole Newhaven lobster with garlic butter & chips or perhaps a classic ham, egg & chips.
Aizle is a Scottish noun that refers to a burning coal, a glowing hot ember, or a spark. Named in the top 100 restaurants at this year’s National Restaurant Awards, the chefs offer 6-course tasting menus changing constantly, dictated by what is local and in season. Previous dishes have included Isle of Mull cheese croustade with Ramson capers, smoked eel with pickled beetroot on a sweet potato cracker.
For seafood lovers, Ondine Oyster & Grill is an essential visit, winning Best Restaurant in Scotland 2018, 2019 & 2021. Ingredients are sourced from the Shetlands and the south coast of England, with the majority coming directly from Newhaven’s Welch Fishmongers. Classic fish dishes such as oysters ceviche, dressed brown crab and steamed mussels can be enjoyed.
Where to drink:
You’re not short of places to drink in Edinburgh with plenty of quality cocktail bars featured as some of the UK’s and World’s best. Panda and Sons was launched as a Prohibition bar in 2013 and has gone from strength to strength. The menu features six sections that allows you to try twists on classics as well as unique hand-crafted drinks.
Over on Queen Street, Lucky Liquor co. has a unique take on the cocktail bar experience, with 13 cocktails based on 13 core spirits, which are on the menu for 13 weeks. The current menu includes ‘Rosewhip’ which combines gin, hibiscus, raspberry and lemon.
For a more intimate drinking experience, why not pop over to Bramble Bar & Lounge, currently number 6 on the Top 50 Cocktail Bars list? Serving high-end drinks since 2006, this bar is a staple to those visiting the capital with its reasonably priced perfect pours.
If you’re a fan of Italian Aperitivos then Hey Palu should certainly be on your itinerary. Alex Palumbo brings a taste of Italy to Edinburgh with his well-thought-out menu inspired by the casual but sophisticated drinking culture of his home country.
Sights to visit:
We couldn’t possibly list every single wonderful sight to see when visiting this bustling city, however, we can give you several unmissable recommendations for your 48 hours.
You can’t go through the city centre without seeing the glorious Edinburgh Castle wall and turrets. As one of the most exciting historic sites in western Europe why not book a visit to explore the military fortress, royal residence, and prison of war. Or simply admire the breath-taking views from the outside.
The Royal Mile runs through the heart of Edinburgh’s Old Town and is only a short walk from the Grassmarket. Offering visitors a plethora of places to eat, drink and shop, it’s a definite hot spot for classic Scottish culture and history.
If you’re the outdoorsy type perhaps a trip to Arthur’s Seat will satisfy your walking needs. Once an ancient volcano, the 640-acre Royal Park is just a short walk from the Royal Mile and gives you the most stunning views of the city and Holyrood Park.
For beautiful horticulture why not visit Royal Botanic Garden, full of plants and lush greenery, this self-proclaimed national treasure of Scotland has been home to a spectacular living collection of plants for over 350 years.
Events not to miss:
Of course, we couldn’t forget to mention the world-famous and highly celebrated Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Taking place annually, this year you’ll be able to enjoy theatre, comedy, dancing, singing and anything else you can think of from 5-29 August. With events throughout the city, you can enjoy talent from across the globe at this incredible arts festival.
If visiting towards the end of the year, the Christmas markets and winter festivals are essential. With street performances, light shows and markets from 19 November and 3 January you’ll have plenty of opportunities to get in the festive spirit.