Getting there: We got to Edinburgh via train from Glasgow and the journey was only 1h30 and tickets cost £13 (with our railcard). The journey home was 2h30 and our tickets cost £28 (with a railcard again) so overall getting there and back was very affordable.
How we got around: Even though where we stayed was quite far away from the city center, there was a tram stop right outside the hotel. We only used the tram or walked to get around Edinburgh and commute really was so easy. We each bought an Adult Day Ticket every day, we allowed us to get on the tram (and buses) as many times as we wanted. A return ticket was £3.40 but for £4.50 we could get a day ticket which was definitely worth it. P.s. you can buy tram tickets from the machines at every tram station. You cannot buy your tickets on the tram (you must have your ticket before you get on).
Where we stayed: We stayed at an Ibis hotel in Edinburgh as well, however, this one wasn’t nearly as good as the one in Glasgow. The hotel was the Ibis Budget Hotel Edinburgh Park and it cost us £109 for 2 nights (with breakfast). Honestly, not complaining because it really was so affordable and even though it wasn’t in the city, the location was still great. Not only did it have the tram stop right outside but there was also a shopping mall right across the street with a huge Morrisons and a food court. The rooms were pretty small but I liked them because it felt nice and cosy. Alex wasn’t a fan considering he is twice my size and likes to have his own space. Breakfast was pretty good but on both days we were there, they kept running out of stuff (oops) so we had to sit there and wait for more eggs to come out etc. Staff was lovely though and everything seemed clean so again for that price, I really was happy with it.
Places we visited in Edinburgh:
1. This was definitely an experience and not just a place we visited but we booked in a visit at The Chocolatarium. It was £16 pp for a 90minute chocolate adventure, and it was worth every penny. It involved a lot of chocolate tasting, chocolate making (which was definitely the highlight for me) and you also got to learn about chocolate history, how cocoa beans are grown and how they are made into a chocolate bar. Overall 10/10 and would definitely recommend it.
2. Camera Obscura & World of Illusions was another amazinggg place we visited. Tickets were £16.50 pp and again it so was worth it. I know this sort of museums can be found in many big cities and if you have been to one before, then obviously this will not be that different. However, if you haven’t been to one in a long time, or more important if you have never been to one, then this will be a must. It was so much fun and the best part was that the ticket was valid for the whole day so if you needed a break you could leave the museum, go get some food, chill out, and come back later on.
3. We visited the Nationa Museum of Scotland but we only got there 1 hour before its closing time so we didn’t have time to see everything. We really enjoyed it and both got to see things that we were interested in but it would have been better if we had just a bit more in there. Just like almost all museums, there was no entry fee.
4. This is definitely not a tourist attraction but I wanted to mention it anyway. Alex is a coffee lover and he absolutely loved the coffee at Gordon Street Coffee. There was one in Glasgow by the train station and there was one in Edinburgh as well and if I remember correctly they are there only 2 stores. The coffee blend at the two locations was a little different (because they both made their own) but they were equally nice. If you are a coffee lover who happens to visit Glasgow or Edinburgh, keep this place in mind.
What we wished we had time for: There were two things Alex and I really wanted to do but didn’t get around to. First thing was to go on an underground tour of the city and the second thing was to hike up to Arthur’s seat. Arthur’s seat was quite far away from our hotel which meant it would take an x-amount of time to get there, go on the hike and come back; after all, we were only there for 2 days. We were planning on doing one of the tours on our last day in Edinburgh but we just ended up being way too tired. The tour was at 1:00p.m. so we would have to wake up pretty early to have breakfast, pack and get to the city centre in time for the tour. Instead, Alex and I chose to “snooze” haha. Maybe next time.
Other than that, we did a lot of walking around the city. Edinburgh is seriously one of the most beautiful cities I have ever been to and it was like nothing I have seen before. Both Alex and I enjoyed walking around the city so much, exploring all the little streets and cute shops and cafes we came across. Plus I do think that walking (with no destination in mind) is one of the best ways to fully experience a new place you are visiting. On our last day, we also walked up to the entrance of Edinburgh Castle but we didn’t go inside. Either way, it was still nice to see it from the outside, take some pictures, and take in the amazing view from up there.
If you ask me, Edinburgh is truly stunning and I would recommend visiting it without a doubt!