13 Best Places to Picnic in Edinburgh

13 Best Places to Picnic in Edinburgh

A heatwave which could produce the hottest temperatures this year is sweeping across Scotland. Temperatures are expected to reach between 25C to 26C this week.

There’s no denying it – Edinburgh looks stunning in the sunshine. So make the most of the good weather by enjoying the great outdoors. We’ve listed the best places to enjoy a picnic.

1. Princes Street Gardens

It is the most central park in Edinburgh and definitely one of the busiest parks in town when it is sunny. In the shadow of Edinburgh Castle, the Gardens were created in two phases in the 1770s and 1820s. Both run along the south side of Princes Street and are divided by The Mound. East Princes Street Gardens run from The Mound to Waverley Bridge and cover 8.5 acres (34,000 m2). The larger West Princes Street Gardens cover 29 acres (120,000 m2) and extend to the adjacent churches of St. John’s and St. Cuthbert’s, near Lothian Road in the west.

The Gardens are the best-known park in Edinburgh, having the highest awareness and visitor figures for both residents and visitors to the city. Various concerts and other events are held at the Ross Bandstand including the Festival Fireworks Concert, Men’s Health Survival of the Fittest, and during the city’s Hogmanay celebrations.

 

2. The Meadows

The Meadows is a large public park in the south of the city centre. It consists largely of open grassland crossed by tree-lined paths, but also has a children’s playground, a croquet club, tennis courts and recreational sports pitches. It is bordered by the University of Edinburgh’s George Square campus and the Quartermile development on the site of the old Edinburgh Royal Infirmary to the north and Marchmont to the south. To the south-west, it becomes Bruntsfield Links where there is a free, public pitch and putts golf course. It is one of the best places in the city to organise BBQ with friends!

3. Royal Botanic Garden

Just one mile from city centre, the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh offers visitors peace and tranquillity amongst 72 acres of stunning scenery. The Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh is one of the finest botanic gardens in the world.  A pleasure for all the family, the Garden offers fantastic views of the capital’s skyline, featuring Edinburgh Castle, and is located just a mile from the city centre.  Visitors can discover its fascinating history, which dates back 300 years, learn about its plantings and walk around 70 acres of beautiful landscape.

4. Harrison Park

#thecalmb4thestorm #nofilter

A post shared by Siwei Kang (@swayvacay) on

Harrison Park is at the heart of a lovely community, shared by dog walkers, children, picnickers and duck feeders. It’s gorgeous in the summer and stunning in the autumn. It sits beside Union Canal, so throw down your blanket and get the sandwiches out and watch the world go by!

4. Granny’s Green – The Grassmarket

Favourite go-to spot after getting a scoop or two at Mary's milk bar

A post shared by alalita (@aisyahlalita) on

Nestled right under Edinburgh Castle, this spot on a summer’s evening is perfection! You are surrounded by little cafes and bars, so this is a great spot for an impromptu picnic. Located in The Grassmarket, it can get quite busy so get down early and enjoy the sun all day!

5. Calton Hill

One of the seven hills of Edinburgh, it’s well worth the short steep walk with your picnic to the top of Calton Hill. The historic site is in the centre of the city and overlooks the Scottish Parliament at Holyrood. With such vast and stunning views down over the city, Calton Hill is popular with picnic-ers on the rare Edinburgh sunny day.

6. Blackford Hill


Blackford Hill is towards the south of the city and popular with dog walkers and weekend hikers. From here you can see Edinburgh Castle, Calton Hill and, on a clear day, all the way out across the Firth of Forth.

7. Inverleith Park

Inverleith Park was made for picnics. Meticulously manicured grassy parkland, lovely trees, and a resplendent sundial garden all add to the appeal. Once more, those looking to congregate in large groups, toss a ball about, meander over the quaint wooden bridge, or explore surrounding flora and fauna, will be in their element. Such a prime spot demands a perfect picnic.

8. Portobello Beach

Portobello is a coastal suburb of Edinburgh. Once known as a beach resort, it is located three miles (5 km) to the east of the city centre, facing the Firth of Forth, in eastern central Scotland. Although historically it was a town in its own right, and is often seen as such by its inhabitants, it is now a residential suburb of Edinburgh, with a promenade fronting on to the wide sand beach. It lies between the suburbs of Joppa and Craigentinny.

 

9. Cramond Beach

 

A bracing trip to the sea front

A post shared by Emily (@heliotropia) on

Enjoy the feel of an old fishing village which the suburb of Cramond still retains. There is plenty of history to see in the area too with Cramond boasting one of the longest known periods of human settlement, and refreshments are available at the nearby pub or the nice coffee shop.

10. Arthur’s Seat

Arthur’s Seat may be a predictable choice and yet, it still never ceases to enrapture the people who walk it. Every time something new arises, whether it’s an added entity in the skyline or an uncharted route graced with new but equally astounding views. If lugging a picnic to the top doesn’t sound like too much of a headache, the vision of the city (and beyond) will erase all images of arduous power walking. That, and some surprisingly delicious Scottish BBQ from Reekie’s Smokehouse. Perfectly placed nearby, this family-run eatery is a winner in the meat, coffee, beer and cake game. Quick and easy, consider this a wonderfully spontaneous kind of Scottish picnic experience — no fuss, no frills — just good food and views.

 

11. Pentlands

https://www.instagram.com/p/BMMkqcRDlJX/

Star in your own film and escape for a picnic in the Pentlands. Rolling hills, picture-perfect streams and views worth knowing about make this an ideal spot to throw down that checkered blanket and soak up the serenity. Adventure junkies will see this as an exploration opportunity, which may or may not cut into valuable eating time. Budding romanticists, on the other hand, will see this as a blissfully remote location. Strategically placed at the foot of the Pentlands is The Secret Herb Garden. This herb nursery hosts a café filled with produce harvested on site, along with various jams, chutneys and jellies.

Near Edinburgh, there is also some great spots!

12. North Berwick

 

13. Yellowcraig

 

Yellowcraig is a natural cove beach with spectacular views to the 1885 lighthouse on Fidra Island, the inspiration for Robert Louis Stevenson famous tale Treasure Island.

Pride Edinburgh returns to the capital on Saturday 16th June 2018

Pride Edinburgh returns to the capital on Saturday 16th June 2018

Scotland’s capital city will be filled with colour this weekend as Pride returns to Edinburgh for its 23rd year. At inlingua we embrace cultures, diversity and love. We are proud to support Pride Edinburgh.

Save the date, Pride Edinburgh will be on Saturday 16th June 2018. Events kick off with the annual Pride Scotia march, this year starting at The Scottish Parliament at midday, before heading up the Royal Mile, along George IV Bridge and into Bristo Square. There will be a brief pause outside Edinburgh City Chambers for speeches.

You can download the full Pride Edinburgh Guide as a pdf here.

Pride Edinburgh exists to promote equality and diversity and protect the future of the LGBTQI community in Scotland. The traditional Pride March provides a platform for politicians, community activists, and most importantly individuals turn out to march through the streets of Edinburgh to celebrate Pride. The Festival has LIVE Music, Health and Community Fair and lots more. Pride Edinburgh takes place in Edinburgh every year.

Detailed Programme

  • 11:30 Pride Marchers to assembly at Scottish Parliament on Parliament Green by Horse Wynd.
  • 12:00 March moves off, heading North and turning left into the Canongate, proceeding ahead into the Canongate, then the High Street.
  • 12:30 The March will halt outside the City Chambers for speeches from invite guests. Speakers will talk to the March from the Mercat Cross.
  • 13:10 March departs the City Chambers heading west up the High Street, turning left at Lawnmarket Junction into George IV Bridge, continuing along George IV Bridge, a slight left into Bristo Place, turning left into Potterrow, ahead into Potterrow. Turning left in Crichton Street.

13:30: Turning left into Charles Street, The Pride Scotia March arrives at the EUSA Campus the site of the Pride Edinburgh 2018: True Colours Festival.

All timings following departure are approximate, should The EUSA Campus reach capacity, The remainder of the Pride Scotia March will continue ahead from Crichton Street into George Square, turning left into Middle Meadow Walk, dispersing on the Meadows.

www.prideedinburgh.org.uk

HappyPride!!

Harry Potter: Walk in the Footsteps of the World’s Most Famous Wizard

Harry Potter: Walk in the Footsteps of the World’s Most Famous Wizard

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for quite some time, you must have heard of Harry Potter and the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. After 7 novels and 8 movies the worldwide phenomenon has attracted countless tourists and fans in London and Oxford, but did you know that Scotland is closely related to this magical world?

Here are some famous sites every Potterhead should visit on their next trip to Scotland!

The Elephant House, Edinburgh

The Harry Potter author, J.K. Rowling, moved to Edinburgh in 1993 and The Elephant House is one of the cafés she used to go to in order to write her first novel, Harry Potter and the Philosopher Stone. The coffee house is constantly flooded by fans trying to retrace the steps of their favourite author, and maybe, who knows … get inspired themselves!

Victoria Street, Edinburgh

As Rowling lived in Edinburgh for several years, it’s only natural that she looked around her for inspiration when writing her novels. For example, Victoria Street was her main inspiration for the mysterious and magical Diagon Alley, where the young Harry Potter bought his first year’s school supplies. If you dare venture into this wizarding street, don’t hesitate to stop by Diagon House or The Boy Wizard, two Harry Potter Shops where you will find all the magical supplies you need.

Tom Riddle’s Grave, Greyfriars Kirkyard

Victoria Street is not the only part of Edinburgh that inspired the author. With a 7-novel series, you can imagine the number of characters evolving in Rowling’s work and all the names the author has had to make up for them. Hidden away in Greyfriars Kirkyard, some very interesting tombstones can be found, which most likely helped Rowling in the naming process of some of her characters: Tom Riddle, McGonagall, Moodies, etc. Walk down the graveyard’s alleys for more spooky discoveries!

 

 

The Balmoral Hotel, Edinburgh

This beautiful Victorian luxury hotel was once Rowling’s safe haven. She frequently visited the hotel while she was finishing Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Room 552, now renamed the J.K. Rowling Suite in her honour still holds the desk and chair where the author sat to write.

 

Rowling’s handprint, the Edinburgh City Chambers

The Edinburgh City Chambers is another stop HP fans will not want to miss when visiting Edinburgh. Rowling’s handprints can be found on a flagstone in the quadrangle in front of the City Chambers. The prints were set in 2008 when Rowling received the Edinburgh Award.

 

George Heriot’s School: Edinburgh’s very own Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry

Although nobody except Rowling really knows where Hogwarts really is located, many believe that the castle was inspired by George Heriot’s School in Edinburgh. The gothic architecture of the breath-taking school situated in the city centre will undoubtedly remind fans of Harry’s beloved school. Even the four houses of Hogwarts may have been inspired by the George Heriots School’s four towers!

 

Glennfinan Viaduct – All aboard the Hogwarts Express

Hidden in the depth of the Scottish Highlands, this railway is famous for being featured in the Harry Potter movies. Harry Potter enthusiasts will be happy to know that the Hogwarts Express is no longer only reserved for Wizards: Muggles can now journey across Western Scotland on board the famous steam train just as Harry and his friends did!

 

Scottish landscapes

Finally, Scotland’s countryside is packed with breath-taking landscapes which are heavily featured in the Harry Potter movies.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BI-y2dLAS27/?tagged=eileannamoine

 

Why Spring is the Perfect Time to Visit Edinburgh

Why Spring is the Perfect Time to Visit Edinburgh

20Image: Flickr (Adam Jackson Bell)

We love Edinburgh all year round but spring can be a fantastic time to see the city at its best. Here are some reasons why we think spring is the perfect time to visit Edinburgh…

It’s actually quite sunny

Good morning from Edinburgh! #edinburgh #castle #sunny #summer #festival

March, April and May are some of the sunniest months in Edinburgh with the least rainfall. There may be a winter chill in the air but spring is definitely one of the best seasons to get out and explore the cities streets and parks.

The city is in full bloom

The cherry-blossomed Meadows, Edinburgh

Spring is one of the rare occasions to see Edinburgh’s beautiful cherry blossom trees in full bloom. Take a walk through the Meadows and enjoy a flurry of pink petals in the sunshine.

It’s not too busy

Untitled

Spring is still well before the mega tourist influx August so you can enjoy the city’s best attractions without having to queue (as much).

There is plenty to do

Polargraph at Edinburgh Science Festival

The International Science Festival, the Hidden Door Festival and World Whisky Day all take place before the summer months arrive.

And lastly… you can see the spectacular Beltane Fire Festival

Beltane 09 - Fire

The Beltane Fire Festival event takes place every year on the 30th April and celebrates the beginning of the summer season. This ancient Gaelic pagan tradition involves dazzling fire displays and (probably quite cold) painted performers. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime spectacle!

Diageo announce plans to build new whisky visitor experience in Edinburgh

Diageo announce plans to build new whisky visitor experience in Edinburgh

Diageo has announced it will invest £150 million over three years to transform its Scotch whisky visitor experiences in the biggest concerted programme ever seen in Scotland’s whisky tourism sector.

Whisky from Diageo’s distilleries all over Scotland contribute to the Johnnie Walker blend, but four distilleries, Glenkinchie, Cardhu, Caol Ila and Clynelish, will be linked directly to the Johnnie Walker venue in Edinburgh, representing the ‘four corners of Scotland’ and the regional flavour variations of Lowland (Glenkinchie), Speyside (Cardhu), Island (Caol Ila) and Highland (Clynelish) crucial to the art of whisky blending.

Watch this video to find out more about the new Johnnie Walker global brand attraction & distillery upgrades designed to grow the appeal of Scotch.

Ever wondered who Diageo is and what they do?

Watch this short video to find out, or go to www.diageo.com for more information.

 

Spectacular humpback whale in front of Edinburgh Castle

Spectacular humpback whale in front of Edinburgh Castle

Picture by Adrian Plumb

The moment a humpback whale breached from the water in front of Edinburgh Castle has been captured by a photographer. Birdwatcher Adrian Plumb got more than he bargained for when he caught an “image of a lifetime” while looking for a tiny bird. Birdwatcher snaps surprise whale shot in front of castle. The mammal was spotted surfacing against the striking backdrop in the Firth of Forth. He managed to capture spectacular pictures of a humpback whale in front of Edinburgh Castle. The huge mammal was swimming in the Firth of Forth while Adrian looked on from Kinghorn in Fife.

A number of the huge mammals were pictured in the Firth of Forth over the weekend, with some sightings also reported on Monday.