Things to do in Edinburgh

Things to do in Edinburgh

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Discover the best attractions and things to do in Edinburgh

Edinburgh is a city steeped in history, culture, and beauty. With its stunning architecture, bustling streets, and breathtaking landscapes, Edinburgh is a city that truly has something for everyone. Whether you’re a history buff, a foodie, or an adventurer, there are countless things to do in Edinburgh.

Things to do in Edinburgh

For those who love history, there are few cities in the world that can compare to Edinburgh. From the iconic Edinburgh Castle to the Royal Mile, the city is filled with historic landmarks and attractions.

Edinburgh Castle is one of the most iconic landmarks in Scotland and is a must-visit for anyone coming to the city. The castle in Edinburgh is perched on top of a hill, giving visitors stunning views of the city below. Inside, you’ll find exhibits on Scottish history and culture, including the crown jewels and the Stone of Destiny. Make sure to catch the daily firing of the one o’clock gun.

If you’re looking for something a little more off the beaten path, there are a number of fascinating museums in Edinburgh to explore. The National Museum of Scotland is a must-see, with its collection of art, design, fashion, and natural history exhibits. The Scottish National Gallery is another popular destination, featuring works by some of the world’s greatest artists, including Botticelli, Van Gogh, and Monet.

For things to do in Edinburgh with kids, visit the Edinburgh Dungeon. The dungeon is a live-action experience that takes visitors on a journey through Scotland’s past, from the dark days of the plague to the notorious Burke and Hare. While the romantics will find plenty of things to do in Edinburgh for couples, such as strolling through the picturesque streets of the Old Town or exploring the Royal Botanic Garden hand in hand.

One of the best free things to do in Edinburgh is visit Arthur’s Seat, which is an extinct volcano that is situated in the heart of the city. It offers some of the best views of the city and is a popular spot for walkers and hikers. The walk to the top is free, and visitors can take their time to enjoy the stunning views.

A cool thing to do in Edinburgh is to attend one of the city’s many festivals. The Edinburgh Festival Fringe, which takes place every August, is the largest arts festival in the world, featuring thousands of performances across the city.

Discover the best things to do in Edinburgh below…

  • Almond Valley

    Almond Valley Museum, Farm and Discovery Centre

    12 Millfield
    EH54 7AR

    01506 414957

    The old stone buildings of the watermill and byres are now a home to a number of friendly farm animals, pets and poultry on this wooded riverside park and museum.

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  • View from Arthur's Seat

    Arthur’s Seat

    1h 35m

    2.4 miles


    Admire the picturesque city of Edinburgh from Arthur’s Seat, an ancient volcano perched at the highest point of the 640-acre Holyrood Park.

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  • Blackford Hill Summit
    Image Credits: Pampuco - CC BY-SA 4.0

    Blackford Hill

    4 Charterhall Rd
    United Kingdom
    EH9 3HR

    0131 529 2401

    A fantastic excursion for hikers looking for scenic panoramas, Blackford Hill sits at an impressive 538 feet! This walking trail is open all-year-round and rests on the outskirts of the city.

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  • Calton Hill

    Calton Hill
    EH7 5AA


    Calton Hill, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, sits in the middle of Edinburgh. The mound offers sweeping views over the city and is home to an array of buildings and monuments, including The Scottish Parliament Building.

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  • Vortex Tunnel in Camera Obscura World of Illusions
    Image Credits: Christian Michelides - CC BY-SA 4.0

    Camera Obscura and World of Illusions

    Royal Mile
    EH1 2ND

    0131 226 3709

    Camera Obscura and World of Illusions offer five floors packed with interactive displays and optical illusions! This quirky is the perfect attraction for families seeking a fun-filled excursion in the heart of Edinburgh.  

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  • Circus Lane

    Circus Lane, Edinburgh

    Circus Lane
    EH3 6SU

    You can reach this gorgeous gem of Edinburgh by taking a short stroll from the centre of Old Town. Dubbed the city’s ‘most charming street’, Circus Lane is a fabulous place for soaking up Edinburgh’s history. Be sure to sample a fresh pastry or two from the nearby coffee shops.

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  • City Art Centre

    2 Market St
    EH1 1DE

    0131 529 3993

    City Art Centre is a superb gallery resting in the centre of Edinburgh’s Old Town. A fabulous spot for a family outing, a wealth of contemporary and traditional masterpieces await.

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  • Craigmillar Castle ruins in Edinburgh

    Craigmillar Castle

    Craigmillar Castle Rd
    United Kingdom
    EH16 4SY

    0131 661 4445

    Known as Edinburgh’s ‘other castle’, Craigmillar Castle’s ruins and park rest on the outskirts of the city. Far-reaching views, medieval architecture, and trails make this a great excursion for history lovers of all ages!

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  • cramond beach

    Cramond Beach

    EH4 6NU

    Come and find this pretty set of sands in Edinburgh’s outer suburb of Cramond. Resting about five miles from the city centre, Cramond Beach is relatively easy to find and well-equipped for family outings with its vast sands, causeway and coffee shop.

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  • Dean Village river

    Dean Village

    Dean Path
    Edinburgh & The Lothians
    Eh4 3AY

    Dean Village is a scenic sanctuary tucked away in the middle of Edinburgh. With the winding Water of Leith running through its centre, this part of the city is an idyllic outing!

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