13 Best Places to Picnic in Edinburgh

13 Best Places to Picnic in Edinburgh

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 in the city.

1. Princes Street Gardens

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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

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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

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Just one mile from city centre, the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh offers visitors peace and tranquillity amongst 72 acres of stunning scenery.

4. Harrison Park

#thecalmb4thestorm #nofilter

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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

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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

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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

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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

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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

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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.

Relive Our 4th inlingua Unplugged!

Relive Our 4th inlingua Unplugged!

Last week, we hosted our 4th inlingua unplugged to celebrate Edinburgh’s diverse cultures. We had an eclectic mix of live music/ Featuring acoustic sets from some of our favourite local artists.

Edinburgh has been ranked second in the world for quality of life!

Edinburgh has been ranked second in the world for quality of life!

A study of global prices across 47 cities published by Deutsche Bank examined everything from salaries and rents to cheap dates and weekend breaks. Edinburgh has been ranked second in a global quality of life survey – behind Wellington in New Zealand.

World cities with the best quality of life:

  1. Wellington, New Zealand
  2. Edinburgh, UK
  3. Vienna, Austria
  4. Melbourne, Australia
  5. Zurich, Switzerland
  6. Copenhagen, Denmark
  7. Ottawa, Canada
  8. Boston, United States
  9. Amsterdam, Netherlands

Edinburgh was ranked 24th worldwide in terms of salary, with the typical net pay after taxes reaching $2,293 (£1,776) a month – just 53 per cent of that earned by an average New Yorker and almost a third of the amount paid to someone working in Zurich, Switzerland, which topped the list. However, Edinburgh’s low commuting time meant citizens spend the least amount of time travelling to work of any of the 47 cities analysed. In terms of healthcare satisfaction, Edinburgh ranks second and is third in terms of its pollution levels.

Deutsche Bank said Edinburgh also scored sixth on property prices against income and tenth in terms of safety – but scores lowest on climate and cost of living at 24th and 25th on the list. However, perhaps surprisingly, the Quality of Life index excluding a ranking relating to climate, saw Edinburgh fall one place to third – with the popularity of its weather boosting it to second.

Edinburgh is a consistent all rounder. Decent opportunities, average costs but less stressful living/working conditions assuming you agree with the climate score. The world’s “mega cities” like Tokyo New York, Paris, London, Shanghai and Mumbai rank very low mostly due to high living costs, crime, pollution and commuting time.

One person’s long commute may be another person’s chance to catch-up on Netflix. Megacity dwellers may also forsake short-term quality of life for aspirational reasons with these cities providing more upside rewards from the average for those most successful.

Read more

World Languages Evening Course Schedule from 17th April 2017!

World Languages Evening Course Schedule from 17th April 2017!

Our new evening term will begin from 17th April 2017! If you cannot see your language or level on the list please get in touch with us.

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Beginner Mondays
6.30 – 8.00pm
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Wednesdays
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Post-Beginner Wednesdays
6.30 – 8.00pm
Thursdays
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Thursdays
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Wednesdays
6.30 – 8.00pm
Pre-Intermediate
Intermediate

Try a lesson for only £1 on Tuesday 11th April (Monday 10th for Gaelic) – book your place here!

Evening English Course Schedule from 17th April 2017!

Evening English Course Schedule from 17th April 2017!

Our new evening term will begin from 17th April 2017! If you cannot see your course level on the list please get in touch with us.

General
English
Business
English
IELTS
Preparation
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Preparation
Pre-Intermediate
Intermediate Tuesdays &
Thursdays
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6.30 – 8.00pm
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Try a lesson for only £1 on Monday 10th April – book your place here!

£1 Lessons in English, Arabic, French, German, Polish, Spanish, Portuguese and more!

£1 Lessons in English, Arabic, French, German, Polish, Spanish, Portuguese and more!

Thinking of learning a new language this spring? Come along to our Open Evenings on the 10th and 11th April and try a lesson for only £1!

Our new term for evening lessons will begin from 17th April 2017. Before the term begins, we invite you to come and try a 45-minute lesson at our language centre for only £1. If your language or level doesn’t appear on the list, feel free to come along to chat with our team and have a look around!

Monday 10th April 2017 (English & Gaelic lessons only)

18.00 – 18.45

  • General English (Upper Intermediate)
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19.15 – 20.00

  • Business English
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Book your place on one of our English or Exam Preparation lessons here!

Book your place on our Gaelic lesson here!

Tuesday 10th January 6.00pm – 8.00pm (Other Languages Only)

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Book your place on one of our language lessons here!