Where to stay, where to eat and what to see during a trip to Edinburgh

20 January 2020, 16:45

What to do, what to see and where to eat in Edinburgh
What to do, what to see and where to eat in Edinburgh. Picture: PH/PA
Alice Dear

By Alice Dear

Whether you're heading to Scotland's capital for a week with the family or a weekend with your partner, here's the ultimate guide of what to do, eat and see.

Where to stay

The Chester Residence

If you're looking for a luxury stay while exploring the beautiful city of Edinburgh, there's no where else to go but The Chester Residence.

Situated around a 15 minute walk from the city centre and all the must-see tourist spots, The Chester Residence is the perfect place to stay in the city.

The Chester Residence is a set of five-star luxury apartments
The Chester Residence is a set of five-star luxury apartments. Picture: The Chester Residence
The Chester Residence is the perfect place to stay in the city
The Chester Residence is the perfect place to stay in the city. Picture: The Chester Residence

The Chester Residence have a number of five-star luxury apartments, with the Owner's Residence being the room you want if you're visiting with your partner.

The Owner's Residence apartment comes complete with a jacuzzi and a cinema snug which is home to a 75 inch TV for a cosy night watching your favourite flicks.

The rest of the apartments are also spectacular, giving you a luxurious and trendy place to unwind after a day of site seeing.

The Scotsman Hotel

This hotel is named after the famous newspaper, The Scotsman, that used to be based in their stunning building.

The Scotsman Hotel is another luxurious hotel set in the city centre, just moments from the train station – perfect for those not wanting to travel far.

The hotel embodies the best of Edinburgh, with plenty of history and incredible views of Edinburgh Castle, The Mound, Carlton Hill ad The Princes Street Gardens.

The Scotsman Hotel is named after the famous newspaper that used to be based in the building
The Scotsman Hotel is named after the famous newspaper that used to be based in the building. Picture: The Scotsman Hotel

Novotel Edinburgh Centre

If you're looking to save some money on accommodation in Edinburgh, the city centre's Novotel has everything you could possibly want.

The four star hotel is minutes from all the must-see tourist spots in the city including Royal Lyceum Theatre and Edinburgh Castle.

With 180 rooms, complimentary wifi, an indoor pool, a sauna, gym and a variety of sized rooms, it's perfect for a weekend getaway.

Where to eat

Noto

Noto has to be one of Edinburgh's best kept secrets, located along the quiet Thistle Street, but only a short walk from the city centre.

If you're looking to try something new and fresh, you'll find it at Noto, who describe themselves as a "New York inspired restaurant with a love for Asian cuisine".

The atmosphere is trendy and chic, but also warm and welcoming, and the food is nothing short of spectacular.

We recommend the shanghai style pork bao and the burrata with romesco, red chilli and grilled bread.

Noto is a must-visit for everyone visiting Edinburgh
Noto is a must-visit for everyone visiting Edinburgh. Picture: Noto

Stockbridge Restaurant

Stockbridge Restaurant is described as "not so much fine-dining as relaxed, unpretentious experience."

With great food and a warm and cosy atmosphere, Stockbridge Restaurant is perfect if you're looking for great food without the fuss.

Make sure to visit the Stockbridge Restaurant if you're visiting with a family.

Stockbridge Restaurant has great food and a warm and cosy atmosphere
Stockbridge Restaurant has great food and a warm and cosy atmosphere. Picture: Stockbridge Hotel

The Little Chartroom

If you're visiting Edinburgh, you can't leave without a visit to The Little Chartroom, whether it is for brunch, lunch or dinner.

Located on Leith Walk, The Little Chartroom has quickly become a firm favourite with locals and visitors since it opened in 2018.

Expect delicious food, a great atmosphere and five-star service.

The Little Chartroom is perfect for brunch, lunch or dinner
The Little Chartroom is perfect for brunch, lunch or dinner. Picture: The Little Chartroom

What to see and do

Camera Obscura

Whether you're with your family, with a partner or visiting Edinburgh with friends, you can't leave without a visit to Camera Obscura.

This museum with a twist has five floors of exciting artwork, instalments and games for you, with plenty of interactive areas and photo oppurtunities.

You'll also be treated to some stunning 360 degree views of the city at the top of the museum, and a presentation all about the original Camera Obscura and how it works.

Edinburgh Castle

Whether history is your thing or not, you can't leave Edinburgh without taking in Edinburgh Castle.

Instead of simply just looking at the beautiful fortress from below, challenge yourself to the stairs and experience the castle for all it's worth.

If you're up for exploring inside the castle and it's rich history, you can visit The Great Hall, the National war museum and St Margret's Chapel.

Try and visit the castle around one o'clock so you can see the gun salute, which dates all the way back to 1861.

Edinburgh Castle is beautiful all year round
Edinburgh Castle is beautiful all year round. Picture: PA

The Potter Trail

J.K. Rowling wrote the first Harry Potter book in Edinburgh, meaning the city inspired a lot of the places, people and objects in the famous book and film series.

If you love Harry Potter, you have to go on the Potter Trail, where your guide will take you to the cafe where J.K. Rowling wrote the first book, the 'real life' Diagon Alley, the school that inspired Hogwards, and Tom Riddle's gravestone.

What's even better is the tour is free, and through April and August has two drop-in times for anyone looking to take the tour.

Arthur's Seat

If you're looking to get out of the city for a while, there's no better place in Edinburgh to take in some countryside than Arthur's Seat.

The walk up to Arthur's Seat will take you around 30 to 60 minutes with a gentle incline, and will offer incredible views of the city from the top.

And if you're a movie fan, you'll recognise the area from films such as One Day, Chariots of Fire and T2 Trainspotting.

Escape the busy city with a trek up to Arthur's Seat
Escape the busy city with a trek up to Arthur's Seat. Picture: PA

The Royal Mile

The Royal Mile, situated in Old Town, is somewhere you'll probably end up even if you didn't mean to.

It is the busiest street for tourists, complete with iconic restaurants, bars and shops.

You're also most likely to find at least one person playing the bagpipes on The Royal Mile, making for an all-rounded trip to the Scottish capital.