At the beginning of July, I had the wonderful pleasure of visiting Edinburgh, Scotland for the first time. However, even though I had prepared myself in advance by checking out all of its amazing landmarks, I found myself unprepared for a few very significant details of what Scotland is all about. Therefore, to save you all the same learning-about curve, I have prepared for you a list of things to be prepared for when visiting Edinburgh.
Only minutes after I arrived in Edinburgh at the end of June, wearing a skirt and a tank top and expecting chilly, but nice weather, I was proven wrong. Moreover, in the days to follow, I realised that the weather in Scotland tends to be changing quite drastically. I had it all, an autumn rain, a windy afternoon and even a hot summer day.
Buy an adapter
If you are travelling from any other country, chances are you will be in the need of an adapter. As another struggle was to actually find one, here is some advice – they sell them at the airport, some souvenir shops on Princes Street and most surprisingly – Primark, which saved my life. Good one, Primark!
Plan what you want to visit
Edinburgh is a city that can prove to be challenging for a short visit. There is just so much to see!
Every street can be a distraction and let’s not even mention all the restaurants and shops.
Therefore, having an idea for what you want to visit and fitting it in a plan, or even participating in an organized tour can help a lot with your time-management, so you don’t miss any breath-taking possibility!
Prepare for a lot of ups and downs… literally
Green hills, paved hills and rocky hills. All the hill types you can imagine, all in one place. Moreover, prepare to…
Bring your walking shoes
A walk through Old and New Town, one of the many beautiful green areas of the city, walking is not only meant to happen but recommended. A bus ride will never give you the same experience as accidentally finding a hidden gem.
Count your change
I loved my trip to Edinburgh. I loved the nature, the people, the architecture and the atmosphere. However, there was one thing I did not quite enjoy – the buses. And don’t get me wrong, the buses themselves were quite nice and clean, but the paying system drove me to despair. One bus ticket will cost you about £1.70, which is manageable. Until you realise that no change can be given in return. You either pay the exact amount or you overpay. This is just unheard of!
A good idea will be to either plan ahead with your coins or just buy it online. Lothian buses have an app, where you can buy all kinds of tickets to spare you the despair!
Prepare for ques and crowded spaces
Depending on when you decide to visit Edinburgh, you may be pleasantly surprised by big crowds of tourists walking around the city with the exact same expression of confusion as you. Not that it will ruin your trip but having all of this traffic around you can be quite annoying and exhausting. So, if you want to enjoy a more laid-back view of the city, visit it before July.
“Excuse me, can you repeat?”
And lastly, one important to mention. The language. Yes, Scottish people do speak English… But it may not be the English you are used to. Won’t spoil you the amazing experience of hearing it first hand, but I will just say – prepare to ask a lot of people to repeat.
I hope those tips saved you a worry or two around your visit to Edinburgh and if you did not plan such a trip, I hope you consider it. I had a wonderful time in Scotland and cannot wait for my next visit!