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Where to stay in Edinburgh

Where to stay in Edinburgh

Choosing where to stay in Edinburgh is tricky. This attractive, historical city has so much to offer! If you’re looking to splash some vacation cash, then the New Town, close to shopping hot-spots like Princes Street and George Street, is a must. On the other hand, if you want to delve into the city’s past, put yourself close to the Royal Mile or Grassmarket. For a quieter time, the best areas to stay in Edinburgh are around Stockbridge or Leith. Both are a short walk or bus journey from the city’s centre, so you get to enjoy a more relaxed vibe without being too far from all the attractions.

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Mountain view of the city of Edinburgh with clock tower as focal point
  • Royal Mile

    Located in Edinburgh's Old Town, the Royal Mile stretches from Edinburgh Castle all the way to Holyrood. Packed with traditional Scottish and souvenir shops, it's a bustling area. If Edinburgh's history interests you then it's here you'll find Edinburgh Castle, the underground warren of Mary King's Close, The Witchery, and the grand St Giles' Cathedral.

  • New Town

    Facing Edinburgh Castle, Edinburgh New Town is where you'll find attractions like Princes Street Gardens, the Royal Scottish Academy, and the Edinburgh Dungeon. Should Edinburgh shopping be on your to-do list, base yourself here. Get your retail fix by exploring the vast Jenners department store, or independent boutiques around Rose Street and designer stores on George Street.

  • Grassmarket

    Situated in the Old Town, Edinburgh Grassmarket was a livestock market until the 19th century. Today, there's a wider selection of goods sold. It's also full of vibrant bars and restaurants that offer great views of Edinburgh Castle. Stay here and explore the colourful boutiques on Victoria Street, or seek out the small Greyfriars Bobby Memorial – dedicated to a dog who stayed by his owner's grave after his passing.

  • Leith

    A little way out of central Edinburgh, Leith was once the city's maritime centre. Stay here and you'll want to make sure you take an audio tour around the splendid Royal Yacht Britannia – the former floating vacation home to Queen Elizabeth II. Afterwards, splash some cash in the vast Ocean Terminal shopping centre, or take a leisurely stroll along the Water of Leith, which is one of Edinburgh's most picturesque walkways.

  • Stockbridge

    This is the upper-class area of town. Stockbridge boasts cobbled streets and the Royal Circus – a collection of beautiful Georgian-style houses and private gardens. Stay here and it's only a short walk to the Royal Botanic Gardens Edinburgh. There's also good access to the Water of Leith walkway. Market day falls on the weekend, but during the week there are artisan food shops and fine-dining restaurants nearby.

Frequently asked questions

When packing for a trip to Edinburgh, don't forget the essentials like your visa, passport, chargers, camera, some GBP and the correct power adaptor. Clothing wise, check out the seasonality guides and pack to suit the conditions - aka plenty of  layers for winter and lighter options for summer. Other necessities include a raincoat, walking shoes, hat, and sunglasses. We also recommend doing some bicep curls in preparation for all the beer, whisky and gin samples you’ll no doubt be lifting throughout your stay.

Edinburgh is an incredibly walkable city, so you shouldn’t have any issues navigating all the sites. With this in mind, travellers generally opt to stay in Old Town, New Town, Stockbridge, Leith and Dean Village.

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While Edinburgh isn’t winning any prizes for year-round sunshine, it does give travellers the chance to experience all four seasons. Summer offers the hottest temps and long, sunny days between June and August, while winter will bring the cold, fog and snow between December and February. If you’re not a fan of the cold and are keen to make the most of your days in Scotland, we recommend visiting between March and August.

Beyond sampling haggis and shopping for your next kilt, Edinburgh packs a mighty punch when it comes to vacation activities. Take your pick from days spent wising up at history at the National Museum of Scotland, exploring the fortress on Castle Rock, enjoying a spot of shopping on Prince Street and sampling any of the city’s specialty beers, whisky and gin.

Flight Centre's travel experts are well versed in the art of decoding thick Scottish accents, and have worked hard to curate the best Edinburgh vacation packages on the market. Sign up to get the hottest deals sent straight to your phone & emails here. You can also check out our deals online, or speak to one of our Travel Experts.


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