Edinburgh’s Christmas begins with Light Night extravaganza

Edinburgh’s Christmas begins with Light Night extravaganza

Over six weeks, Scotland’s Capital city transforms into a magical winter wonderland. The city offer no shortage of things to see, do and enjoy with a programme designed to get you into the Scottish festive spirit.



Breather in the scent of Christmas with a stroll though the city’s cinnamon-fueled markets, a mug of glühwein or hot chocolat in hand. Marvel at twinkling ice sculptures celebrating some of Scotland’s most famous citizens in the Ice Adventure, visit the Gian Advent Calendar, or treat yourself to a spectacular show at the Festival Square.

For festive thrill seekers young and old, discover the Star Flyer and the Yeti, take a spin on the the Big Wheel and Carousel, and don your skates on the oval Ice Rink.

Forget the Christmas coffee cup or the first mince pie – the switch on of the High Street lights marks the true beginning of the festive season. Visitors and residents came together to celebrate the start of Edinburgh’s Christmas season.



The festivities, which will last for six weeks, went into full swing as a 20,000-strong crowd met in the city centre for an afternoon of free music, dance and celebrations. Alongside the opening of the annual markets in Princes Street Gardens, the event marked a weekend where families across the city began to prepare for the big day. Tonight’s event, dubbed Light Night, is the latest in a line of attractions designed to foster community spirit on George Street and the surrounding areas. Throughout the afternoon, choirs and dance groups came from across Scotland and braved the freezing winter weather to perform.


Four great fiction books for English language learners

Four great fiction books for English language learners

A really great way to improve your vocabulary and reading skills is by reading a good book and getting completely absorbed in the story. If you’ve ever wanted to read some English stories, but weren’t sure where to find books suitable for your level, then you’ve come to the right place. Here are my recommendations for some great English books for language learners.

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time by Mark Haddon

This book tells the story of Christopher Boone, a young boy with Asperger’s syndrome. Christopher’s condition means that he finds it difficult to connect with other people, and has trouble understanding some of the more complicated aspects of human relationships. Written from Christopher’s perspective, the book is a really interesting description of what it’s like to live with a learning disability, but also presents the world from a different point of view, giving us a new understanding of some things which we might take for granted.

The language in The Curious Incident is simple and easy to understand because Christopher speaks and thinks in an extremely logical and straightforward way. I would recommend this book for intermediate levels and above.

Animal Farm by George Orwell

Animal Farm is a book about farm animals.

The interesting thing about these animals is that they can speak to each other, think complex thoughts, and form governments similar to our own. The story focuses on a group of animals on one particular farm, using the way their society develops as a metaphor for the corruption and dishonesty of human politicians. Animal Farm is a classic story of revolution, power and corruption, told through the prism of a simple fable.

The language in Animal Farm is a little bit more complicated than in The Curious Incident, as it was written about seventy years ago and some of the language might seem a bit old-fashioned. With the help of a good dictionary, I think this book would be suitable for strong intermediate students.

Nine Stories by J. D. Salinger

This is a collection of short stories by one of America’s most famous and influential authors. Focussing on a number of different topics and characters, Salinger explores the pain and suffering associated with our loss of innocence when we grow up. In almost all of the stories, children are compared with adults, the children often possessing the real wisdom and knowledge that the adults fail to see.

This is one of my favourite collections of short stories. Salinger’s language is relatively simple and easy to understand, but is also very expressive and evocative. I would recommend this book for intermediate levels and above

Penguin Graded Readers

If all of these books sound a bit too complicated for your level, a good idea would be to get one of the penguin graded readers. These are English novels which have been adapted to various different levels. The story is the same, but the language is simpler, so they are a good way to introduce yourself to English literature if you aren’t a confident reader.

Happy reading!

How to navigate the city and find our school in Edinburgh?

How to navigate the city and find our school in Edinburgh?

Image credit: Flickr, Hec Tate

Getting to Edinburgh and inlingua is easy, no matter where you are coming from or how you choose to travel. On this article you’ll find general information about how to get to the city of Edinburgh, and details of how to navigate the city and find your inlingua school.


Getting to Edinburgh


By air

Edinburgh International Airport receives daily flights from more than 20 UK and 40 European airports, as well as daily transatlantic flights. Flights from international destinations are also scheduled throughout the week. The airport is about 12km from the city centre. The 30-minute journey can be easily made using the frequent airport bus or tram services, or by taxi.

By rail

Edinburgh has excellent rail links throughout the UK. The East Coast mainline, which links Edinburgh and London King’s Cross, is the UK’s fastest intercity railway: you can travel between the cities in around 4 hours. Or, if you prefer to travel overnight, a sleeper service runs between London Euston and Edinburgh Waverley 6 nights a week.

There are great links to other cities too. The journey to Glasgow only takes 45 minutes, while York, Newcastle, Inverness or Aberdeen can be reached in about 2 hours. All trains arrive at Waverley Station in the centre of the city, although some trains also stop at Haymarket, which is a smaller station in the West End.

By bus

If you are travelling on a budget, buses are often your best bet. Edinburgh is well placed on the Scottish motorway network so getting here is easy with regular bus services from all major UK cities. Buses and coaches arrive at St Andrews Square bus station in Edinburgh’s city centre.

By car

Travel times by road are less than you might think. From the south: Birmingham is about 5 hours away; Manchester and York, 3 hours; Newcastle, 2 hours. From the north: Inverness is about 3 hours away; Aberdeen, 2 hours. Route information for drivers can be found on the RAC or AA websites.

Getting around the city


Edinburgh is a compact city and is easy to get around on foot, by bike or by public transport.

Travelling by public transport

Edinburgh and its surrounding suburbs are well served by two local bus companies. A tram service also operates in the city centre. The main public transport used in Edinburgh is the bus. You will see the famous double-decker buses everywhere.


Adult: £1.60
Child: 80p

Ideal for infrequent users. SINGLEtickets are available from your bus driver. When boarding the bus let the driver know the type of ticket you require and then place the correct change into the red fares box. Please have your correct fare ready as our drivers do not have access to cash and cannot give change.


  • Adult: £4.00
  • Airport Day ticket: £9.00

A day ticket is perfect if you wish to take the bus several times a day. With this option, you have access to all buses in Edinburgh for one day and you can of course use them as often as you’d like to. The day ticket costs £4.00 and you can buy it directly to the first bus driver also.


  • One-week card: £18.00
  • Four-week card: £54.00
  • One-year card: £630.00

It is the best option for regular travellers. You can choose from a one-week card and a four-week card. With the Ridacard you will have unlimited travel on bus and tram, day and night. The Ridacard has to be purchased to one of the Travelshops from the Lothian buses (situated on Hanover Street, E London Street or on Market Street).


Finding inlingua Edinburgh


We are based at 40 Shandwick Place, Edinburgh, EH2 4RT, United Kingdom.

inlingua Edinburgh

What is the weather like in winter in Edinburgh?

What is the weather like in winter in Edinburgh?

The weather in Edinburgh is well-known for being unforeseeable. In one day, it’s common to experience all the seasons that you have in one year, whether you are in Summer or in Winter ! So don’t forget to bring an umbrella in your bag-pack and a raincoat.

During the winter (November, December, January and February), the temperatures range from about 2-6 degrees Celsius in Edinburgh. It occasionally snows and it’s sometimes also very windy. But if you wear a good winter jacket, it will be alright. Also, wear some good boots against the cold and the snow.

Another thing that must be said: in Winter, it usually gets dark at around 4pm…(as Edinburgh is a city near the Arctic circle).

If there is any snow in the city, it’s the perfect place to spend Christmas time: View from Arthur’s Seat:


Another sunny day in Winter: winter time at Calton Hill:


Image Credit: The City of Edinburgh Council, Flickr

Edinburgh Loves Anime kicks off Tonight!

Edinburgh Loves Anime kicks off Tonight!

Scotland Loves Anime returns for an eighth year and is crammed with both new and classic films this year!

The Edinburgh weekend runs from the 16th to the 22nd of October at the Filmhouse Cinema and the schedule runs as follows:








13:00 – VENUS WARS


15:30 – MIND GAME

Scotland Loves Animation is a charity promoting animation as art. For the last seven years they’ve been running film festivals, workshops, exhibitions, graduate showcases and other events in Scotland to appeal to all ages and tastes. The annual film festival, Scotland Loves Anime, has become renowned as the UK’s top film festival for Japanese animation.

Further information on the films can be found at www.lovesanimation.com

Save money on tickets by booking multiple films: 

Ticket Deals

  • Buy tickets for three different films in this season and get 15% off.
  • Buy tickets for six different films in this season and get 25% off.
  • Buy tickets for nine different films in this season and get 35% off.

These packages are available online, in person and on the phone, on both full price and concession tickets. Tickets must all be bought at the same time.