Monday, January 16, 2012

Edinburg, Scotland

Executive summary by Darmansjah

See

You can amble (or cycle) along the wooded riverbanks of the 12-mile Water of Leith Walkway, which runs from the city centre upstream to the Pentland Hills or downstream to Leith. A good short walk is from Stockbridge to historic Dean Village, where the waterway is spanned by a Thomas Telford bridge.




Charlotte Square was designed by Robert Adam in 1791 and its northern side has some of the finest Georgian architecture anywhere. The Gerogian House has been beautifully restored (0131 226 3318; 7 Charlotte Square;10am-5pm Apr-Oct,11am-3pm Mar&Nov).



the Palace of Holyroodhouse is the royal family's official residence in Scotland, but is most famous for being the 16th-century home of Mary Queen of Scots. Explore its sumptuous royal apartments (0131 556 5100; royalcollection.org.uk; Canongate; daily).


Princes Street has great shopping, but also expansive views of the castle and Old Town. At hte eastern end the Scott Monument has an exhibition of Sir Walter Scott’s life and a spire you can climb(0131 529 4068; East Princes Steet Gardens; 10am-7pm Apr-Sep, 9am-4pm Oct-Mar).


Modern in Leith, Edinburg’s main port, the former Royal Yacht Britannia was the royal family’s floating home from 1953 until 1997 – it’s a mounment to 1950s style (0131 555 5566; royalyachtbritannia.co.uk; Ocean Terminal, Leith; daily).

Eat And Drink

L’Alba d’Oro is more than just ababulous chippy: you wouldn’t expect a 300-plus wine list at your average deep-fryer, nor could you get zesty prawn suppers or veggie haggis (0131 557 2580; lalbadoro.com; 5-7 Henderson Row; fish supper).



Fishers in Leith, tucked beneath a 17th-century signal tower, is one of the city’ best seafood places. The menu ranges from battered coley with chervil mayonnaise, to North Berwick lobster with a prawn and caper crust (0131 554 5666; fishersbistros.co.uk; 1 The Shore,Leith).



Named after a mountain in northwestern Scotland Stac Polly gives shophisticated twists to fresh Highland produce, such as haggis in filo parcels with sweet plum and red wine sauce (0131 556 2231; stacpolly.com; 29-33 Dublin St; dinner-only on Sat).



Pass trough the doors of the Cafe Royal Oyster Bar and enter a Victorian palace of mahogany, brass, marble floors, Doulton tiles and starched linen. The menu is mostly classic seafood, with a few beef and game dishes (0131 556 4124; caferoyal.org.uk; 171 West Register St).



Tower sits atop the Museum of Scotland and has great Views of the castle. It serves quality Scottish food, simply prepared – try half a dozen followed by a fillet of Border beef (0131 225 3003; tower-restaurant.com; Museum of Scotland, Chambers Street).



Why Go
Edinburgh is a beautiful city entangled in an impressive landscape. The rocky cliffs of Salisbury Crags overlook one end of the Old Town and the leafy corridor of the Water of Leith snakes along the terraces of the New Town.



When To Go
Vosit om the spring for the cherry blossom, in August and September for the Edinburgh International Festival (elf.co.uk) and winter for the ice rink in Princes Street Gardens.





How To Go
To get to Edinburg Airport, fly into London and connect with British Airways (britishairways.com), easyjet (easyjet.com). the Airlink bus will take you the city centre (edinburghshuttle.co.uk).





Find Your Way



Bright and arty Cluaran House is known for tis welcoming owners. There are period features, wooden floorboards and original artworks throughout the house, with some for sasle. Breakfasts are also good (0131 221 0047; cluaran-house-edinburg.co.uk; 47 Learnington Terrace).





Though set in a typical Victorian terrace, the Southside Guest House transcends the b&b category and feels more like a modern boutique hotel. Its eight rooms have a strong desing aesthetic, with bold colour schemes, wrouht-iron beds, oriental rugs and contemporary furnishings (0131 668 4422; southsideguesthouse.co.uk; 8 Newington Rd).





Six Mary’s Palace is an attractive Gerogian townhouse where tranquil rooms hav large sash windows and tiled fireplaces. Breakfast is served in the conservatory overlooking the secluded walled garden (0131 332 8965; sixmarysplace.co.uk; 6 Mary’s Place).





With Hotel Missoni, the eponymous Italian fashion house has established a style icon in the heart of the Old Town: modernist architecture, impeccable staff and very comfortable bedrooms. Furnishings display Missoni’s signature zigzag patterns 9013 220 666; hotelmissoni.com; 1 George IV Bridge).





Set in a 16th-century house, the Withchery by the Castle offers seven lavish suites. All are furnished with antiques oak paneling, tapestries, open fires and roll-top baths, and supplied with flowers, chocolates and complimentary champagnes. It’s popular – you’ll have to book several months in advance (0131 225 5613; thewitchery.com; Castlehill, Royal Mile, Suite US$480).





Getting Around

Lothian Buses and First Edinburgh are the two main bus operators (single fare US$1.50; lothianbuses.co.uk, firstedinburgh.co.uk). the city is well equipped with bike lanes and cycle tracks, and Biketrax rents out bikes and euipment (US$26 per day; biketrax.co.uk).



TrailBlazing

A cobbled street in the affluent Stockbridge area leads to Edinburgh’s best secret – The Raconteur. On first impression it’s an average bar but the large selection of specialist alcoholic beverages and little portion jars lined neatly at the bar draws you in like a kind in a seeet shop. An excellent cocktail list, hlepful staff and heavenly ambience welcome you in like a long lost friend in winter months I’d  recommend their Trailblazer cocktail – it’s a real warmenr for the soul (0131 343 3221; theraconteuredinburgh.com; 50 Dean Street).



Jolly Geroge

The George Hotel is warm and comfortable, and the staff welcoming and helpful. Our room was spotless and well appointed, if a tad small, and the food was excellent. The George is perfectly situated for access to all the sights of Edinburgh being a short walk from Princess Street. We’ll definitely stay again next time we visit 90131 225 1251; rpicipal-hayley.com; 19-21 George Street; from US$180).






Garden Of Edinburgh


Wander through the Royal Botanic Garden to see the amazingly different shades of green. A visit to the glasshouse is especially warm and inviting in winter. The rockeries, with their exotic plants, are perhaps a little preview of heaven (rbge.org.uk; inverleith Row; open daily).



Find out more, TravelGuidance. has a chapter on Edinburg, which you can also dowload from travelguidance.blgospot.com. Edinburgh encoutner is a short guide. for an insight into the less picturesque side of the city, get involved in the crime-ridden world of  Ian Rankin's inspector Rebus. for practical information refer tovisitscotland.com


1 comment:

  1. Wow. Fantastic monster there. The urbanity monster striding forth, as it does in most cities of the world. Nice hand-drawn banner too. Something like this image, http://EN.WahooArt.com/A55A04/w.nsf/OPRA/BRUE-7Z9RQ8 , by French painter Fernand Léger, maybe effective painted large on a wall too, acknowledged as a copy of course. It can be seen at wahooart.com and a canvas print of it can be ordered from there.

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