Over the past few weeks, winter has come to Edinburgh. Reports of the first frost on the Meadows; walks home with numb ears and breath clouding before me; the early sunsets that belie the true chill. I’d take a cold, dry day over rain every time and — as the weeks speed towards Christmas — this wintry weather is but encouraging my festive spirit (and … Continue reading An evening at Edinburgh’s Christmas market!
It’s August in Edinburgh and that can mean only one thing: the Festivals. I wrote recently about how, during summer in the Scottish capital, it feels like there is a party around every corner. In August, it’s that feeling on steroids. The city centre shakes with music, narrow streets shrink further with the crowds, tipsy tourists walk purposefully towards their next engagement, and artists of … Continue reading #EdinBloom: Welcome back, festival season!
When spring explodes in Edinburgh — in a patchwork blanket of bright colour, little leaves unfurling like party poppers — it always feels brand new (to me, at least). I can never recall this season in Scotland’s capital as vivid as it appears to my tired, winter-dulled eyes. When you have an afternoon to yourself at this time of year (following a brilliant brunch with … Continue reading Exploring Edinburgh: A blossom walking tour
It feels like spring has truly arrived. The streets are buzzing with cosmopolitans sporting denim jackets (myself included). Cliques sit outside hipster cafés and bars in the mild heat. The brave souls among us even have their pale legs out in the sunshine (myself not included). This is the kind of weather I’d forgotten I loved, back in the wilds of winter when I was hoping … Continue reading Exploring Edinburgh: Duddingston & Dr Neil’s Garden
It was the first time I’d been up this street. Or should I say up the stairs? My stomach stuffed with Lovecrumbs coffee and cake, I weaved back down to the Grassmarket and saw the sign. The Vennel. My camera bag was over my shoulder; the first time it had escaped my office drawer since Monday (always the sign of a hectic week). I unzipped its corners … Continue reading Exploring Edinburgh: The Vennel, Grassmarket
One of the many things I like about Edinburgh — aside from its dependable, beautiful architecture and its constant greenery — is its walkability. Although the suburbs stretch far towards the hills and beaches which ring the city itself, Edinburgh’s iconic neighbourhoods (like Stockbridge or Dean Village) are within easy walking distance of the town bustle. That’s how Sunday wanders have become a bit of a routine for … Continue reading Exploring Edinburgh: Stockbridge and Circus Lane
Wandering around a city’s streets at night is never something I’m prone to do, unless I’m stumbling out of a pub (which happens about twice a year…) or I’m wandering home from work in the depths of winter. And so it was that a few Fridays ago — as the dark fell early yet again on Edinburgh — I met up with the lovely Frances (a … Continue reading Exploring Edinburgh: Grassmarket at night
Edinburgh is full of quiet, leafy spots you’d never believe are right in the heart of the city. Dean Village, the Water of Leith walkway, Stockbridge… and to add to these favourites, the Royal Botanic Garden. With 70 acres of alpines, woodland and shrubs, not to mention Britain’s tallest Victorian glasshouse, visiting the Botanics are a must if you’re a nature fan who’s somehow ended up … Continue reading Exploring Edinburgh: Botanic Lights
I imagine that Holyrood Palace is to Edinburgh locals what Buckingham Palace is to Londoners. Even though I’ve only lived in the Scottish capital for a year, I’ve lost count of the times I’ve passed by the tall dark gates, peered curiously through the bars or seen tourists hurry towards the entrance. It’s one of those spots — a bit like Edinburgh Castle — which you … Continue reading Exploring Edinburgh: Holyrood Palace in autumn
After weeks of buzz, book signings, bizarre theatre and big personalities, the Edinburgh Festivals have let their curtain finally fall. The city has returned to relative normality: the New Town shopping streets’ lunchtime rush now consists of bleary-eyed office workers emerging from their August hibernation; the little that’s left of the Festivals is just flotsam in the centre of George Street. This year’s events will have … Continue reading Goodbye, Edinburgh Festivals!