We’ve given you our guides to Barcelona and Las Vegas, now for something a little closer to home. As more of us than ever are opting for ‘staycations’ over vacations, we take a look at the historic Edinburgh, which offers the perfect combination of culture and cosmopolitan, in the third STYLEetc City Guide.
The castle dominates the Edinburgh skyline, visible from all avenues down which you may choose to meander. Shrouded in history, a trip to Edinburgh without a trip to the castle is no trip at all. On route to the castle make your way along the Royal Mile, joining tourists from around the world to lap up the quintessentially Scottish atmosphere, punctuated by cashmere purveyors and the sound of bagpipes (what else?)
Time your visit just right and you’ll hear the roar of the One o’clock Gun, piercing the air at 1pm each day (except Sunday)
Where else can you find a city with an extinct volcano in its limits?
A jaunt up Arthur’s Seat, the tallest of Edinburgh’s seven hills, will get the blood pumping and the appetite building for some of the best grub in Scotland.
Kyloe Steak Restaurant & Grill
Sunday lunch is all about getting together with family and friends, breaking bread (or should that be beef?) and tucking into a hearty meal with a little wine and a lot of laughs.
Kyloe Restaurant & Grill is Edinburgh’s finest gourmet steak restaurant, taking cuts from pedigree Aberdeen Angus and turning them into a Sunday lunch like no other. A whole joint of Borders roast rib of beef is joined by ridiculously tasty versions of the usual suspects; giant Yorkshires, duck fat roasted vegetables, rich pan gravy, roasted organic root vegetables and hot horseradish cream. If you’ve room to spare after the feast, they even throw in a traditional British desert to share too.
Priced at £100 and feeding 4-5 people comfortably, Sunday lunch at Kyloe is one of Edinburgh’s main attractions! A great way to fill yourself up after all that walking and site-seeing!
Edinburgh offers its shoppers some serious style choices. First point of call is Princes Street, a stretch of high street favourites sat in the shadow of Edinburgh Castle. Sandwiched between the beautiful Princes Street Gardens (a nirvana of calm amidst the hustle and bustle) and the hustle and bustle of Rose Street’s restaurants and bars, Princes Street is a haven for high street shoppers. An added bonus, and a must visit, is the Jenners department store. Up until its acquisition by House of Fraser in 2005, Jenners was the oldest independent department store in Scotland, maintaining its position on Princes Street since 1838.
Known as the ‘Harrods of the North’, Jenners has held a Royal Warrant since 1911, combining history and incredible architecture (the Grand Hall will take your breath away) with scope for some serious shopping!
With a Harvey Nichols just off the main stretch of stores, you may have to quietly remind yourself that you didn’t come just for the shops.
If vintage threads are more your thing, Armstrong’s Vintage Emporium is a must visit. One of Britain’s largest vintage clothing emporiums, Armstrong’s has three locations and has provided an array of vintage treasures since 1840. Velvet smoking jackets sit alongside vintage Levi’s, leather pencil skirts, cashmere knits and, of course, just a little tartan. Cast aside assumptions that vintage equals costly; Armstrong’s has all style yet none of the airs and graces.
The Sheep Heid Inn
Just reward for your time spent trekking over Arthurs Seat and shopping, The Sheep Heid Inn was awarded AA Pub of the Year status in 2013, and is almost as steeped in great reviews as it is in history.
Holder of the title of ‘Scotland’s Oldest Surviving Public House’, it is rumoured to have been established since 1360 and has been feeding and watering its patrons for six centuries! Where else can you combine history and heritage with great food and even a game of skittles in your own private alley (seriously!)
If we’ve tempted you enough to visit Edinburgh, head to www.visitscotland.com to plan your trip!
Arthurs Seat Image from www.geograph.org.uk
Kyloe Image from www.kyloerestaurant.com
Sheep Heid Inn Image from www.thesheepheidedinburgh.com