1.18.2015

EDINBURGH


Though I still maintain London was my favourite UK destination, Edinburgh takes a close second. And guys, it is close. Jess, Damien, and I spent four days in that gorgeous Scottish city, and it was really surprising just how different it was from London. Edinburgh has the same big-city feel, but where London is busy and spread-out, Edinburgh is quieter and more compact. It felt slower-paced and calm, yet the whole atmosphere has a much more dramatic, darker sense than London. The skinny buildings shoot straight up to the sky, and the gothic-influenced architecture is simply stunning. And then on top of all that (quite literally), the massive Edinburgh Castle sits atop a cliff, looming over the whole city. I enjoyed the bustling near-chaos of London, but strolling through the subtly imposing streets of Edinburgh was a refreshing change.

And before you ask, no, I was never brave enough to try haggis. Part of me wanted to, but then I saw pictures of it and I thought, How about no. But never fear, my Scottish experience was not lacking. We walked up and down the Royal Mile, toured old cathedrals like St. Giles, avoided questionable individuals in darkened graveyards, tried out the best coffee shops (Brew Lab and Peter's Yard), stumbled across an amazing statue of Sherlock Holmes, explored the National Museum and the National Gallery, listened to live bagpipe music, discovered random cute buildings and adorable little nooks, raced up a flight of stairs with something like thirty-thousand steps (not our smartest idea), and of course, ate lots of good food. I tried authentic shortbread and square sausage (of which Damien kept a copious supply) and whiskey fudge and Irn Bru. I toured Edinburgh Castle (Jess and Damien had seen it before, so they opted out this time), which is so ginormous that it took me about two and a half hours. The castle was definitely one of my favourite sites; it's overflowing with beautiful history and provides such stunning views of the city. At night we collapsed in our hotel rooms, tired and happy and usually a little cold (though we had a great mix of cloudy days and sunshine and NO RAIN YAY), and spent our evenings in the best ways; eating tiramisu and hoisin sauce duck wraps and the most amazing fudge we bought on the Royal Mile, watching Fantastic Mr. Fox and The Great British Bake-Off, and me gracing my two companions with a riveting reading of a favourite book, complete with dramatic vocals and stunning impersonations. Heh heh. It was very special, guys.

Our favourite parts of Edinburgh were Arthur's Seat and the John Knox House. Arthur's Seat is a mountain hill which overlooks Edinburgh. It was, ahem, a bit more difficult hike than we were expecting (hence the picture of Jess and me practically pulling each other up the path), but we made it and that's all that matters, right? And it was a stunning view. Totally worth the heavy gasping and aching lungs. After we came down and had lunch in the sunshine (and I consumed perhaps more than one vanilla slice to reward myself), we stopped in at the John Knox House. It was such an interesting little tour and adorable house with its wonky staircases, but when we reached the top floor, what should we find but a black cloak and bonnet with a sign encouraging us to try them on. WELL WELL WELL DON'T MIND IF WE DO.

So while London will probably remain the crown of my England trip, I really really miss Edinburgh.

15 comments:

  1. Oh wow! Edinburgh looks SO amazing Petie!

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  2. Please don't ever stop posing your travel pics to England with Jess!! I just love them all!!!! :) I love the pic of you and Jess pulling each other up the trail! so cute!!!

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  3. Beautiful photos! And your time sounds absolutely splendid.

    I am heading to London this March. Since I have a limited time, I am trying to decide wether or not I should take the time to spend a few days in Edinburgh as well. My brother claims it is my natural habitat. Between your blog post and his encouragement - I think I'd better make the trip.

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    1. You're going to London?! Congrats! Can I come, please? ;) And yes yes yes do go to Edinburgh. You won't regret it!

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  4. Damien the serious professor and Jess the, um, silly prof!
    lovely photos dear!

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  5. ahh, these are gorgeous... man, they make me want to travel. hopefully someday i'll visit this place. ;) xo

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  6. I can't even handle the cuteness in this post. Aaaagh. And you guys holding hands....<3 <3 *heartmelting*

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  7. Nicely captured! Edinburgh is lovely & this makes me miss it all the more. When my family & I were there, my sister dubbed Arthur's Seat "Arthur's Elephant" due to its slight resemblance to the aforementioned creature (sprawling trunk on the left, slightly raised "head" etc.).

    What did you think of Irn Bru? XD

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    1. I quite liked Irn Bru! It was similar to drinks I've had here in America, but it still had its own unique taste. Delicious!

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  8. ahhhhh good times good times!! I see you didn't include the "lioness hair" picture...XD THAT FUDGE THO. ahhhhmygosh.

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    1. HAHAHA I genuinely thought about including it, but I ended up not since it was practically just a picture of my face and MY GOSH HAVEN'T THESE POOR PEOPLE SEEN ENOUGH OF THAT. XD but who knows... it may make an appearance one of these days... ;)

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  9. This looks like a ton of fun! I really like the three pictures with you and the feather pen.

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  10. I love, love, love your pictures. And let me just say that I am super jelly of you right now and your adventures! You have such a great perspective on life and learning and I'm so happy I discovered your blog! Scotland and Ireland are high on my list of places to travel to in the future, if and when I get around to travelling the country. In the meantime, I content myself with bringing a little bit of Ireland and Scotland to my home by being such a traditional folk music nerd. Looking forward to keeping up with your travels/photography/adventures. God bless!

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  11. Do you remember the name of the fudge place? My best friend from Church and I are headed over next June/July :D

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    1. Unfortunately I don't! But it's right there on the Royal Mile so it should be easy to spot! :)

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