Scotland is beautiful. It is lush and green and very picturesque. My good friend Susanne and I had a great few days touring the highlights of Edinburgh- eating delicious meals (including haggis), and exploring other parts of Scotland. You can really do and see a lot in just a few short days.
2 Days in Scotland at a glance-
Sat. Day 1:
– Checked in to our Edinburgh hotel- Apex Haymarket Hotel
– Breakfast at Cafe Milk
– Walked around Royal Mile
– Hop on Hop Off bus tour to see the highlights
– Dinner at Cedar Door
Sun. Day 2:
– All-day tour with Timberbush Tours (Loch Ness, Glencoe & The Highlands)
– Dinner at The Devil’s Advocate
Mon. Day 3:
– Breakfast at the hotel
– Head to the airport
Day 1, the arrival:
The flight from Newark to Edinburgh landed at 7:55am Sat. morning. Made sure I had plenty of rest on the plane so we could hit the ground running.
Upon checking into our hotel (we stayed in Edinburgh) the Apex Haymarket Hotel, we set out to find a breakfast spot within walking distance of our hotel. Yelp showed good reviews of Café Milk so we decided to try it. Breakfast sandwich was good, however, we found that in general, the sandwiches need a bit of condiments otherwise taste dry. Overall we would recommend Cafe Milk.
**Helpful hints- The Lothian city buses run frequently and are super cheap. It’s the main way we got around the city. Make sure you have lots of small change because they take cash (British pound) only. Oh and the buses have FREE wifi which is very handy.
At 2pm, we joined Sandemans New Edinburgh FREE walking tour but the guide for our tour was so high-strung, we opted to forgo that idea. Nice enough but way too much energy.
Edinburgh Old Town
Elaine Davidson – “Most pierced woman” and also in the Guinness Book of World Records.
After we had seen enough on foot, we opted for the Hop on Hop off bus tour.
It was a really good affordable way to see the highlights and be able to easily get back on the bus when we needed to get to the next place or just to take a load off. Bus comes around every 15 to 20 minutes, costs about $22 USD, valid for 24 hours (make sure you verify) and stops here-
– Waverley Bridge
– Lothian Road
– Lauriston Place
– Johnston Terrace
– Chambers Street
– John Knox House
– Canongate – Holyrood
– Our Dynamic Earth
– Regent Road
– Hanover Street
– Market Street
At the Our Dynamic Earth stop we hiked up Holyrood Park.
Some areas of the hike were quite rocky.
Nice view of Carlton Hill
Back down the hill and on to the Palace of Holyroodhouse.
Then on to Old Carlton Burial Ground.
Next place we wanted to go was Carlton Hill so we hopped back on the bus and hopped off at the Regent Road stop. From there you walk up a hill (not as difficult as Holyrood Park).
View of Holyrood Park & Arthur’s Seat.
National Monument of Scotland.
Back down the hill and back on the Hop On bus.
Next were some views from the second story double-decker bus…
Past by the Royal Society of Edinburgh
In front of Edinburgh Castle.
Then back to the hotel for the night.
Set out to meet our tour guide/bus at the Royal Mile. We opted to go with Timberbush Tours (Loch Ness, Glencoe & The Highlands) because the tour with our first choice company was sold out.
First stop was Kilmahog for refreshments and livestock (highland cattle & sheep).
The next stop we got to take pictures of the Highlands, Glencoe.
We arrived at Urquhart Castle (additional fee for that and cruise boat).
Watching the Urquhart Castle fade in the distance.
Sadly, we did not spot the Monster…
Upon leaving Loch Ness, we stopped off at a cute little Victorian town called Pitlochry. We walked around and enjoyed some ice cream.
Upon arriving back in Edinburgh, we set out for dinner; A cute little place where Susanne made reservations for us- the Devil’s Advocate. Just like dinner the night before, it did not disappoint! Susanne and I love great food and she always does a great job researching the very best places.
We passed the Edinburgh Castle on the way back to our hotel. It looks especially beautiful at night.
Had a delicious breakfast at our hotel before heading to the airport to catch the flight.
Flight from EDI to ORD was 10:25am – 12:45pm. Free 2-hour wifi was a nice perk, along with Costa coffee. 🙂
If you have any questions about our experiences in Scotland, feel free to ask a question in the comments section. Hope you enjoy Scotland as much as we did!
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