24 Doors Of Advent: Edinburgh’s Locked Doors Open To The Public

24 Doors Of Advent: Edinburgh’s Locked Doors Open To The Public

The free event 24 Doors of Advent returns from 1 – 24 December, allowing you to peep behind usually closed doors throughout the city during advent!

Discover an exciting new place each day, as this real-life advent calendar takes you through a different door throughout December, as Edinburgh opens its doors to showcase the unique buildings in the city.  So forget the snowman-shaped chocolates in paper calendars and enjoy the new discoveries. Check out the list below to reveal information on the site opened each day and make your countdown to Christmas even more fun than usual!

This year’s doors include John Sinclair House, Victorian School Room, McEwan Hall, Trinity House, Burns Monument, Mansfield Traquair, BT Murrayfield and Lauriston Castle.

Please note that some events and tours must be booked in advance.

1 December – Historic Environment Scotland
2 December – Dovecot Studios
3 December – The Victorian Schoolroom
4 December – Lady Haig Poppy Factory
5 December – McEwan Hall
6 December – Dance For All Studio
7 December – Heart of Midlothian, Tynecastle Park
8 December – Trinity House
9 December – Robert Burns Monument
10 December – Mansfield Traquair Centre
11 December – BT Murrayfield Stadium
12 December – Stills
13 December – Scottish Storytelling Centre
14 December – Georgian Antiques
15 December – Holyrood Park Education Centre
16 December – The Scottish Parliament
17 December – Edinburgh Printmakers
18 December – Edinburgh Festival Theatre
19 December – Lauriston Castle
20 December – St Cecila’s Hall and Music Museum
21 December – National Records of Scotland, HM General Register House
22 December – Drumsheugh Baths Club
23 December – Filmhouse
24 December – Church of St John the Evangelist

*Guided tours available at some locations

20 Things to do & see on the Royal Mile

20 Things to do & see on the Royal Mile

Edinburgh’s Royal Mile is the heart of Scotland’s historic capital. A short walk away is the Grassmarket, an area steeped in the city’s colourful history. The Royal Mile runs through the heart of Edinburgh’s Old Town, connecting the magnificent Edinburgh Castle, perched high on a base of volcanic rock, with the splendorous Palace of Holyroodhouse, resting in the shadow of Arthur’s Seat. The Mile is overlooked by impressive, towering tenements, between which cobbled closes and narrow stairways interlock to create a secret underground world.


The Edinburgh Santa Fun Run and Walk

The Edinburgh Santa Fun Run and Walk

Once more, Scotland’s fundraising Santa’s will run, walk and stroll around West Princes Street Gardens, raising money to grant the Wishes of children for When You Wish Upon a Star. Come along and enjoy time with family, friends and work colleagues and help them continue granting the very special Wishes for children who are living with a life threatening illness throughout Scotland.


Sunday 10 December at 11am, Scotland’s fundraising Santas will run, walk and stroll a two lap course around West Princes Street Gardens. The 2.5km event will start at 11am after a special Christmas warm up. Special prizes for the best dressed pushchairs and best dressed dogs.

A woman smiles as she takes part in The Great Scottish Santa Run in Princes Street gardens in Edinburgh, Scotland on December 12, 2010

Entry fees are as follows:

  • Adults –  £10 (12yrs and over); includes FREE Santa Suit and medal to keep
  • Juniors – £5  (5yrs to 11yrs); includes FREE Santa Suit and medal to keep
  • Children – £2.50 (2yrs to 4yrs); includes a FREE Elf Hat and medal to keep
  • Infants – FREE and Dogs – FREE

Click Here To Register

For more information or to registrer, please visit thesantarun.org.uk  or call 0131 273 4344

St Andrew Square Ice Rink

St Andrew Square Ice Rink

Get your skates on and glide all the way round the Melville Monument in St Andrew Square on the beautiful elliptical ice rink.

Skating in Edinburgh

Since Friday 17th November and until Saturday 6th January you can enjoy ice skating in the city centre! Day slots start every 45 minutes from 10.15am to 11.45am, and then every 30 minutes until 9.30pm. The ice rink is cleared completely up to twice a day for cleaning so please check the website or at the box office for up-to-date timings.

Ice Skating


  • Adults £9 / £12.40
  • Children (4 – &5 years) £5 / £8
  • Family ticket £20 / %35 (admits 4, maximum 2 adults)
  • 20% off for EH postcode holders

Please arrive 20 minutes before the scheduled start time to collect your skates. Skating aids are available.

Edinburgh’s Christmas Markets

Edinburgh’s Christmas Markets

Edinburgh Christmas Market from the Scott Monument by Kit Carruthers via Flickr

For over 20 years in the heart of Edinburgh, the popular European Market has been held in the picturesque setting of East Princes Street Gardens and around the Scott Monument to Waverly Bridge.

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Opening Times: Monday to Sunday from 10am – 10pm.

The traditional Christmas market offers a unique, festive shopping experience for every visitor with a whole host of bespoke and traditional Christmas items.

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Traditional German Christmas Market

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.