A Day Out in Edinburgh, Scotland

Lettings of Distinction
  • Home
  • Blog
  • A Day Out in Edinburgh, Scotland

Visitors travel from all over the globe to see Edinburgh’s Old and New Towns, a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Edinburgh viewed from Calton Hill (© Visit Scotland)
Edinburgh viewed from Calton Hill
© Visit Scotland

So why not come and visit Edinburgh's city centre sights and attractions for yourself?

Royal Yacht Britannia, Leith - Royal Yacht Britannia berthed in Leith, Edinburgh (© Visit Scotland)
Royal Yacht Britannia berthed in Leith, Edinburgh
© Visit Scotland

Edinburgh is home to a wide range of shops, so whether you are a devotee of designer names or in heaven on the high street, the shopping won’t disappoint.

Things to do in Edinburgh, Scotland

Discover Edinburgh's top attractions on a day trip from East Lothian

Located just 30 minutes by train from East Lothian, Edinburgh is a great day trip from one of the Lettings of Distinction self-catering holiday lets.


Visit Edinburgh Castle


Edinburgh Castle is the city’s most famous landmark and sits perched on an extinct volcano that overlooks the city.


Inside the castle, some of which dates back to the 12th century, you will find treasures such as the Scottish Crown Jewels.


The fascinating Scottish National War Museum is also within the walls, reflecting the castle’s long military history.


The Real Mary King's Close, Edinburgh


Step back in time at The Real Mary King’s Close to discover an underground world which shows Edinburgh's life from hundreds of years ago.


Find out if plague victims were sealed in their homes, and if ghosts do indeed haunt these ancient streets.


Camera Obscura and World of Illusions, Edinburgh


One of the most unique ways to learn about the history of Edinburgh is on a visit to Camera Obscura and World of Illusions, a Victorian observatory on the Royal Mile.


Enter a darkened rooftop chamber and marvel as a 19th-century device resembling a periscope projects a white beam of light onto a concave table to reveal incredible moving images of the city and its inhabitants.


Hear colourful tales of Auld Reekie before exploring four floors of interactive exhibits where you’ll encounter fantastical optical illusions.


Step inside a room where you can shrink or grow, get lost in a mirror maze and try to keep your balance in a swirling vortex tunnel.


The Royal Yacht Britannia, Edinburgh


The Royal Yacht Britannia, berthed at Leith Docks in Edinburgh, took the British Royal Family around the world and provides a glimpse into the private lives of royalty.


Once on board, you have the unique opportunity to see the state apartments and the engine room.


Follow in the footsteps of Winston Churchill and Nelson Mandela to explore the one place where Queen Elizabeth II said she could truly relax.


Harry Potter sights in Edinburgh


For Harry Potter fans the city of Edinburgh has plenty on offer as this is where JK Rowling began and finished the series.


From gravestones in Greyfriars Kirkyard to the beautiful Victoria Street, the inspiration is clear to those who know where to look!


Indoor activities in Edinburgh


There are also plenty of free, indoor activities available in Edinburgh including The Writer's Museum and the National Museum of Scotland.


The latter offers a world of discovery, with galleries including fashion, science and nature as well as Scottish history.



Several of our properties are located within easy reach of a train station which will transport you to Edinburgh.


East Cliff, in North Berwick, is a beautiful 2-bedroom apartment located close to the High Street, allowing guests to explore the fantastic independent businesses the town has to offer.


Rooftops, also in North Berwick, is perfect for families with older children or golfers and has wonderful coastal views.




Shopping in Edinburgh


What could be better than world-class shopping in beautiful surroundings?


Edinburgh is home to a wide range of shops, so whether you are a devotee of designer names or in heaven on the high street, the shopping won’t disappoint.


And what better way to spend a rainy day in Scotland's capital?


You will find all the essential shops on Princes Street, while a modern shopping experience is on offer at the only Harvey Nichols in Scotland, which sits on St Andrews Square and is full of luxurious treats.


On George Street, you will find an exclusive selection of high-end shops and top designer boutiques sitting alongside high-street favourites, including some of the biggest names in fashion and jewellery.


If you are looking for city centre shopping with a difference, the Royal Mile offers a shopping experience that you won’t find anywhere else.


The Scottish shops on Edinburgh's Royal Mile offer perfect souvenirs alongside top-quality cashmere, whisky and delicious handmade fudge.


There is certainly no shortage of individual boutiques and charming shops in Edinburgh.


The historic Grassmarket is a magnet for unusual shops, encompassing vintage clothes, contemporary jewellery and rare books.


The popular areas of Stockbridge, Bruntsfield, Morningside and the West End are also home to many unique shops and tearooms.


While wandering around these shops, you will soon discover that each area has a distinctive character.


At the end of your shopping trip, you may want to put your feet up at one of Edinburgh's many eateries, including Michellin-starred restaurants such as Restaurant Martin Wishart in Leith. 


Relaxing things to do in Edinburgh

Escape from the buzz of city life and take a relaxing walk in one of the many beautiful gardens found in Edinburgh & The Lothians from the city centre to countryside houses. 

With 70 acres of beautiful gardens and plant species from around the world, no trip to Edinburgh is complete without a visit to the Royal Botanic Gardens.


Visit the greenhouses where chilli peppers grow or step inside the John Hope Gateway, an eco-friendly visitor centre where you can discover more about plants and the work carried out by the Royal Botanic Garden in Edinburgh.


Holyrood Park, at the foot of the Royal Mile, is also very central; from the park, you can walk up the iconic Arthur’s Seat, an extinct volcano.


It requires some exertion to reach the top, but the rewarding views of Edinburgh, the Lothians and Fife make it all worthwhile.


Princes Street Gardens is a popular city centre landmark surrounded by the beautiful cityscape of Edinburgh and home to some of the city’s most attractive postcard views, including the towering Scott Monument and the gloriously ornate Ross Fountain.


For an alternative city centre walk, take a stroll along the Water of Leith. The river was once an industrial hub, but it is now a scenic walkway where you can keep an eye out for local wildlife including brown trout and kingfishers.



Continue relaxing at The Old Millhouse, located 8 miles from Edinburgh in Dalkeith.


Situated on 3.5 acres of grounds and with a Swimspa you will feel right at home.


Pointgarry is another great option for a group of family or friends visiting North Berwick and is ideally placed for exploring beaches, golf courses and more.




Events in Edinburgh


Edinburgh has many events throughout the year, from top-flight rugby matches to world-famous Christmas and New Year events.


However, the highlight of the city's calendar is the festival season, incorporating the Edinburgh Fringe and Edinburgh International Festival in August. 


Read our guide on festivals in Edinburgh and East Lothian and get ready for your next self-catering break with Lettings of Distinction 


Princes Street Gardens, Edinburgh (© Visit Scotland)
Princes Street Gardens, Edinburgh
© Visit Scotland

Lettings of Distinction offers a portfolio of luxury holiday rentals, all located within easy reach of Edinburgh's city centre.

Browse our self-catering lets and book today - we look forward to welcoming you.

Nearby luxury self-catering in North Berwick & East Lothian

Recent from the blog