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
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
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
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
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!
Student life is full of challenges and budgeting is one of the hardest of them all. When you’re adjusting to living away from home, keeping track of your cash can be tricky. Liberty living did a survey to find out which cities in the UK offer students a budget lifestyle.
To create an overall ranking of the top cities for budget student living, Living Liberty selected 20 of the largest UK university cities: Aberdeen, Birmingham, Brighton, Bristol, Cambridge, Cardiff, Coventry, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds, Leicester, Liverpool, London, Manchester, Newcastle, Nottingham, Oxford, Sheffield, Southampton and Wolverhampton. They then used Google Maps to set a search radius from each city’s primary university for both charity shops (2km) and two large chain budget supermarkets (5km) to get a total for both charity shops and budget supermarkets.
They based the survey on:
The number of charity shops and budget supermarkets close to universities in each city
The cost of an annual university gym membership
The cost of a burger and pint at a local student pub
The cost of two cinema tickets
Edinburgh comes out on top of the best budget cities for students. Scotland’s capital wins first place largely thanks to the 20 charity shops and 13 budget supermarkets in the vicinity – giving students a tonne of options to get good value food and clothing. Annual gym membership is also low, and you can get a burger and a pint for a reasonable price, too.
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 theDeathly 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!
Glenfinnan 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!
Finally, Scotland’s countryside is packed with breath-taking landscapes which are heavily featured in the Harry Potter movies.
A fusion of lunar imagery, moonlight and surround sound, join the iconic event in Edinburgh this week.
St.Giles Cathedral is hosting the Museum of the Moon, a touring artwork by UK artist Luke Jerram. This event starts today and will be in Edinburgh until Sunday 27th January 2019. Measuring seven metres in diameter and featuring detailed NASA imagery of the lunar surface, each centimetre of the internally lit spherical sculpture represents 5km of the moon’s surface.
To celebrate the installation, Burns&Beyond will present an accompanying programme of lunar inspired events, talks and concerts beneath the moon. The Cathedral will has organised candle lit evening sessions 21 – 27 January, allowing ticket holders to witness the installation in full illumination accompanied a lunar inspired soundtrack, composed by BAFTA and Ivor Novello award winning composerDan Jones.
21 January Preview Night Candle Lit Evening Sessions
22 January Candle Lit Evening Sessions + Moon Talks + Clair de lune – Live sounds from NASA Space Station
23 January Candle Lit Evening Sessions + Rachel Sermanni Performance
24 January Candle Lit Evening Sessions + St.Giles Choir Performance
25 January Candle Lit Evening Sessions + Roddy Woomble Performance
26 January Candle Lit Evening Sessions + Martin Green – Disarming Reverberations Performance
Each timed session has a set capacity and we expect sessions to be extremely popular. We recommend you book in advance to avoid disappointment.
The UK’s biggest touring cheese festival heading to Edinburgh again!
Foodies will be able to taste some of the finest produce being offered by UK traders
Saturday 17th and Sunday 18th November 2018
From traditional cheeses to Mozzarella sticks, halloumi fries and the most amazing mac and cheese expect to learn about all types of cheese, wines and the best beers that go along with those cheeses at a day that will melt you into a deep love of all things cheese.
This year’s festival, held at the Corn Exchange, was initially set to run on the Saturday only – but a surge in the demand for tickets has resulted in the Sunday extension. This will be the second time that Cheese Fest has come to the capital, and there will be a host of brand new cookery demonstrations taking place throughout the day. Among those showcasing their skills will be Sean Wilson, an award-winning cheese maker.
The CheeseFest 2018 will bring even more vendors and brand new to Edinburgh …
Live bands and music all day
Outdoor hot food arena and food market open all day
Edinburgh has been deemed the safest city in the UK, according to new research.
Nearly 90 per cent of people in the Scottish capital feel safe, with just 16 per cent experiencing crime.
And it was also found 82 per cent of those living in Edinburgh would recommend their home as somewhere safe to live. The statistics emerged in a study to mark the launch of new true crime docu-series Murdertown on Crime + Investigation.
It also emerged just 56 per cent of those living in Birmingham would recommend their home as somewhere safe to live. Researchers found Bristol also appear among the top five safest cities, closely followed by Brighton and Hove, with Southampton and Cambridge completing the top five.
Leicester took second place for the cities residents feel the least safe in, followed by Manchester, London and Sheffield.