As I have mentioned a few times, my parents are in the midst of a trip to Scotland. During the trip, my parents have been acting as “roving reporters”. Today’s post is a review of what to do with two days in Edinburgh. For previous posts in the series, see
- I’m going to Europe (for 250,000 miles)
- Getting ready for a week in Scotland
- Turkish Airlines Lounge review Washington Dulles / IAD
- “Today was the worst day of my life“
- Riding the Hogwarts Express – the Jacobite Steam train over the Glenfinnan Viaduct
- Aer Lingus Business Class review IAD-DUB
- Scotland’s amazing Falkirk Wheel
Two days in Edinburgh: Our first day in Edinburgh
Edinburgh was great. There is so much to see, you could spend many days here but if you only have two days in Edinburgh, here is what we did.
The first day, David ventured into town on the bus alone, as I needed a downtime day. He saw the Scottish Storytelling Centre, Canongate Tollbooth, and managed to find a kilt-making place where he could watch looms making the material and see women hand sewing the pleats.
He also discovered in the same store, bagpipes and whistles. We ended up going again and he bought a chanter, which is the pipe part of the bagpipes without the bags.
Going to church in Edinburgh
We called around, finally getting missionary numbers from the people on Mormon.org to find out if we really had to drive through old town Edinburgh to get through to church on Sunday. Unfortunately, the answer was yes (READ MORE: “Today was the worst day of my life”). But we made it. Garmin said we were there, but we couldn’t find it. While David got out to walk around to see if he could spot it, I just stopped a man in a suit and tie and found the answer. We were really close. Church was the same. Interesting how many accents were present.
2 days in Edinburgh: The Royal Mile, Edinburgh Castle and more
Monday, we both headed into Edinburgh fairly early. We had tickets for Edinburgh Castle for between 1:30 and 3. The Military Tattoo, the reason we went to Scotland in August, the busiest season, was that night at 9. We went to the train station from the bus stop to find if there were any buses that went up and down the Royal Mile. And believe me, it was a long, long mile! It is very steep. There was a bus that we just missed that went all the way down. I thought that if it was downhill, I could make it. Not so. We made it about half way with several stops. We gave up on seeing Holyrood castle at the bottom. Instead, we went to the Museum of Edinburgh. There were more frequent buses going uphill. Gee, I wonder why. It still only took us part way up, but I was grateful for that. We went back to the kilt shop, then on to the castle. They had limited mobility vans which took us up to the top, where most things were. That meant we missed the walking tour, but we hung on the fringes of several that were already up at the top.
We also saw the Honors of Scotland. This included the crown, sword, scabbard, scepter, and the Stone of Scone (pronounced differently from the scones you eat). This scone is pronounced “skehwn” as opposed to “scuhn “. Haha. The royal apartments were ornate. The place where Mary, Queen of Scots gave birth to James VI was a closet sized space. The great hall was….great. David took in the National War Memorial. We saw Mons Meg the larger cannon.
We got a ride back down and ate at the Cannonball restaurant, also known as Contini restaurant. It is called the cannonball because there is a small cannonball in the side facing Edinburgh Castle. We had a good meal, then, because they weren’t busy, we sat in the bar area. We later found out that they closed down the whole street in preparation for the tattoo for security reasons. I am pretty sure we overstayed our welcome, though we promised we would leave if anyone came in. It was obvious they were preparing for something big. Later we found out that they were expecting 800 soldiers who would hang out there between the times they were performing at the Tattoo. Eventually, the owner, while very nice about it, arranged for a wheelchair to take me up to the Tattoo. I am sure he just wanted us gone, but he was very nice about it.
Two days in Edinboro Scotland – Edinburgh Military Tattoo
The Edinburgh Military Tattoo was awesome. It reminded me of the cultural shows that the church youth put on when a temple is dedicated. They had military bands from all over the world, dancers and singers. There was a light show on the walls of Edinburgh Castle. They closed with the lone piper on the ramparts of the castle to honor the fallen. Highly recommend it. I am sure the pictures won’t do it justice. The website said no denim or trainers (tennis shoes). I wore less comfortable shoes and a dress because of that. Nevertheless, it was a sea of denim and trainers, so people should ignore that injunction. Here’s a video of some of the bands playing Scotland the Brave
We had a blast in our two days in Edinburgh Scotland. Any other suggestions you have with what you would do with two days in Edinboro?
(Featured image CC 3.0 from Wikimedia Commons)
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