The 10 most popular sites in the UK during 2016 were all in London.
The most popular attraction north of the border, and the 15th most visited in the UK, was the National Museum of Scotland in Edinburgh, which opened 10 new galleries in 2016. Some 1.8million visitors passed through its doors last year.
Please see below the 7 attractions named in the top 100 most visited in the UK:
15 National Museum of Scotland
16 Edinburgh Castle
18 Scottish National Gallery
41 Royal Botanic Gardens Edinburgh
50 National War Museum, Edinburgh
62 Edinburgh Zoo
99 Scottish National Portrait Gallery
ALVA director Bernard Donoghue said:
“Like the 2015 figures, Scotland has continued to outperform the rest of the UK with a substantial increase in their visitor numbers.
“2016 was a great year for Scottish tourism – proving that Scotland is reaping the benefits of significant capital investment in attractions and creative programming by its institutions.”
Tourism Secretary Fiona Hyslop said:
“As these figures illustrate, this has been a record year for Scotland’s leading visitor attractions”.
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
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!
Book a General English course taking place between now and the end of April and get 10% off!*
Brush up on your English skills before the summer by signing up to one of our intensive General English courses. Enjoy the best Edinburgh has to offer in low season and practise your English in small groups of no more than 10 students!
*To take advantage of this offer please quote “INLINGUA10” when booking.
Terms & conditions:
Offer valid on General English Half Day Group and General English HDG + Spoken Performance
Courses must end before 30th April 2017
Students may continue their course after 30th April 2017 and the usual tuition rate will apply
Discount can not be applied in conjunction with any other offer
Terms & conditions:
Valid on General English Half Day Group or General English Half Day + Spoken Performance courses
Valid on courses taking place from 31st October until 23rd December 2016
Includes tuition only
Can be used on bookings up to a maximum of 8 weeks. Usual terms & conditions apply
We had a record number of teachers studying with us through the Erasmus + programme this summer! As part of the course, teachers from all over the world can explore Scottish history through a variety of cultural activities. Here is a selection of videos from our YouTube channel to see what they got up to:
The Scottish Parliament
Our Erasmus + courses take place all year round and we still have some spaces available for 2016! Find out more here.
If you are thinking of visiting Edinburgh outside of the hustle and bustle of the summer festivals, autumn is definitely the time to do it!
Taking advantage of the end of the tourist season, you can enjoy all kinds of events: music, sports, art and culture, festivals… as well as the activities included in the inlingua Edinburgh social programme. In autumn we have tours around the city, cultural excursions, social events, whisky tasting and, of course, the traditional pub-night that takes place every week.
The Classic Pedal for Scotland ride, the Challenge is now heading towards its 18th year! The 46 mile ride from Glasgow to Edinburgh is the event’s most popular and attracted 7,500 participants in 2015.
The award-winning Botanic Lights event at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh is back. This year, the event will take visitors on an all-new journey of light around the Garden, exploring regions of the world where the Garden’s plants and trees originate.
The Edinburgh Storytelling Festival celebrates the art of live storytelling with a fun filled programme for both adults and children to enjoy. Activities include readings, workshops, talks, events and exhibitions. It is inspired by the sense of togetherness of a traditional Scottish Ceilidh and its tales, anecdotes, music and singing.
Book Week Scotland is a week-long celebration of books and reading that takes place every November. People of all ages and walks of life will come together in libraries, schools, community venues and workplaces to share and enjoy books and reading. They will be joined in this celebration by Scotland’s authors, poets, playwrights, storytellers and illustrators to bring a packed programme of events and projects to life.
If you are a inlingua student, you can also enjoy a lot of social activities every week. Some of our favourite things to do are:
Arthur’s Seat Walking Tour
Arthur’s Seat is a popular attraction because climbing to the top takes only about 20 minutes and the views over Edinburgh, Fife and the North Sea are amazing.
Portobello Beach tour
You might not want to jump in the sea in November but you’ll be astounded by the beauty of the scenery!
Rosslyn Chapel Cultural Excursion
Founded in 1446, as the Collegiate Church of St Matthew, Rosslyn Chapel today attracts visitors from far and wide, drawn by its unique and mysterious carvings and the beauty of its setting.
Traditional Pub Night
Every week the pub night takes place in one of many pubs in Edinburgh, where teachers and students can enjoy some beers outside the school environment.
So don’t hesitate and come to Edinburgh in autumn! What are you waiting for?