Sunday, February 01, 2009

Weekend in Edinburgh

After 4 and a half long hours on the National Express East Coast train, we are finally in the capital of Scotland, Edinburgh. We have stayed in Best Western King Manor hotel on the outskirts of the Edinburgh (15-20 minutes on the bus from Princes street), close to the Portobello promenade. The hotel has all the facilities you can expect from Best Western (including pool, sauna and steam room), affordable and quite easily reachable. The only (minor) downside is that the interior and the toiletries are a bit worn down.
I did not expect Edinburgh to be that different from other cities I've been to: the architecture, the weather, the culture and the people. The first shocking discovery was that buses: they are clean! After using London buses for number of years I have used to food leftovers (fish and chips and fried wings are the most common), crazy drivers and loud people, but in Edinburgh the buses are clean, frequent and drivers are helpful and polite. Then, it is the whiskey they don't export! We've been sampling number of locally (by that, I mean Scottish) produced whiskeys and liquors (based on whiskey) and they are exquisite (we've bought a bottle of Old Pulteney Liqueur to enjoy at home)! As for the sightseeing, we've been to Portobello promenade (had a lovely breakfast at Beach House cafĂ©), the castle (everybody goes to the castle and there is excellent panoramic view of the city), Royal Mile street (for whiskeys and tartan scarf/kilts) Princes street (high street shopping), Omni Centre (cinemas and restaurants), Scottish Museum of History (7 floors of museum dedicated to Scottish history – free) and White Hart Inn pub (for good selection of local beer, live folk musics and the best Haggis in Edinburgh). I've been told, that we should have climbed the Blackford Hill, but it was only 1½ days visit and didn't manage to do that.
Check out the photo album at

And as the saying goes, not everything that starts well ends well. When we came back, we were in for a surprise...


No comments: