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5 Things to do in Edinburgh in May 2017

5 Things to do in Edinburgh in May 2017

Edinburgh In May | The Edinburgh Collection

5 things to do in Edinburgh in May 2017


Our picks of family friendly activities to do in the capital this month


With flowers in bloom and the sun creeping out, it would be easy to just walk around Edinburgh without ever noticing all the other events taking place. While that would be great, you would miss out on quite a lot as May promises to be an exciting month in Edinburgh, packed with plenty of family-friendly events. From cunning foxes to LEGO bricks, we have narrowed the many May happenings into 5 must-dos.


Fantastic Mr Fox
(15th – 20th May   |   Kings Theatre)

Edinburgh In May | Fantastic Mr Fox

The Roald Dahl classic has been a family favourite ever since it was published in 1970 and the 2009 Wes Anderson film captured the essence of the book and was a worthy adaption of the novel. Now, the classic story of a smart and witty fox is being adapted for the stage. This show promises to be family friendly fun at it’s finest, After all, this is Roald Dahl. So can it be anything less than fantastic?

 

http://www.edtheatres.com/fanstasticmrfox

 


The Tomb: Ancient Egyptian Burial
(31st March – 3rd September   |   National Museum of Scotland)

Edinburgh In May | Egyptian Burial

Ancient Egypt has always played host to some of the most fascinating history. The Tomb is no exception. It was built in around 1290BC and was reused for over 1000 years!

The Tomb was constructed shortly after the reign of Tutankhamun, in the great city of Thebes. It was built for the Chief of Police and his wife. As you can imagine, with it being an Egyptian tomb, It was looted and reused several times. However, left behind was a collection of beautiful objects from various eras spanning those 100 years of the tomb. These objects will be displayed alongside objects found in nearby tombs, giving a sense of how burial in ancient Egypt changed over time.

Objects from this tomb and nearby tombs will be on display at the exhibition to give a sense of how Egyptian burial changed over time. It is often that the words education and fun are thrown into the same sentence, but this exhibit does promise to be a fun and educational day out for not just children but adults alike.


http://www.nms.ac.uk/national-museum-of-scotland/whats-on/the-tomb/

 


EdinBrick: LEGO Model Show
(20th May   |   Summerhall)

Edinburgh In May | LEGO

An event that celebrates the joys of LEGO, both creators and collectors will showcase the models of which they are most proud. There will also be areas for people to play with and experiment with LEGO.  The best part about this is not the fun of playing with LEGO, or the chance to see some fantasbrick displays. No, the best part is that all the profits go to Fairy Bricks, a charity that is brightening the lives of sick children through LEGO.


https://www.facebook.com/events/302347430166767/

 


Festival Of Museums
(19th – 21st May   |   Numerous Locations)

Edinburgh In May | Festival of Museums

The festival of museums is, well, just that. It is a series of events taking place during both day and night. Including workshops, exhibits and even fashion shows. The events are hosted in museums, not just in Edinburgh, but all over Scotland.

However, Edinburgh museums specifically have announced a couple of their themes. On Saturday 19th May the City Art Centre will plan a day of creative workshops around the theme of ‘The Enchanted Garden’, whilst on Sunday 20th May the Museum of Edinburgh will hold an afternoon celebrating the music, food and costume of the 18th century.


http://www.festivalofmuseums.co.uk

 


Fair Trade Fiesta
(13th May   |   Royal Mile and Princes Street Gardens)

Edinburgh in May | Fair Trade

Fair Trade Fiesta is not for just select people, it is for people of all ages, cultures and backgrounds. The fiestas reason for being is to raise more awareness of World Fair Trade Day and, also, Scotlands recent renewal of Fair Trade Nation status and of the  Fair Trade Movement. It supports and makes others aware of its cause through a delightfully vivid Carnival Parade and an entertaining (and free) five-hour Concert with the renowned Red Hot Chilli Pipers headlining the event and a further 200+ performers.


http://www.handupevents.co.uk/fair-trade-fiesta.html

 


BONUS

Whisky Month

Edinburgh in May | Whisky Month

Whisky is Scotland’s national drink, and we love it so much that each year we dedicate a whole month to it! May is officially Whisky Month, with World Whisky Day on 20th May.

Pop into one of our hotels for a wee dram of whisky.


Also, don’t forget the following events this May;

Imaginate Children’s Festival – 27 May – 4 June: http://www.imaginate.org.uk/

European Rugby Challenge Cup Final – 13 May, Murrayfield: http://www.epcrugby.com/edinburgh-2017.php

Edinburgh Marathon Festival – 27-28 May: https://www.edinburghmarathon.com/

The Ingliston Revival Festival – 13-14 May: http://www.ingliston.co.uk/revival/

Edinburgh Craft Beer Festival – 26-28 May: https://edinburghcraftbeerfestival.co.uk/

5 Things to do in Edinburgh (for the remainder of) this April

5 Things to do in Edinburgh (for the remainder of) this April

The Edinburgh Collection | 5 Things To Do In Edinburgh

5 THINGS TO DO IN EDINBURGH THIS APRIL


Well, what’s left of it anyway.


While April may be drawing to a close, there is still plenty to do in Edinburgh. Whether you’re in Edinburgh with a partner, family or even by yourself, this list of activities and events will be sure to give your something to do during your visit.


Trad Fest   |   26th April  – 7th May

The Edinburgh Collection | Trad Fest
(Image Source: FolkLore Thursday)

‘TradFest Dùn Èideann’ is a vibrant twelve-day showcase of Scotland’s thriving traditional arts. As 2017 is the year of World Heritage, there will be special events taking place.

http://www.tracscotland.org/festivals/


Beltane Fire Festival   |   30th April

The Edinburgh Collection | Beltane Fire Festival
(Image Source: The List)

Celebrate the first signs of summer with this fiery reimagining of the ancient Celtic festival of Beltane.

https://edinburghfestival.list.co.uk/festival/edinburgh-beltane-fire-festival/ and https://beltane.org/


The Adams Family   |   20th – 29th April
(Festival Theatre)

The Edinburgh Collection | The Addams Family
(Image Source: EdTheatres)

Everyone’s favourite kooky family are now on stage in this spectacular musical comedy as it makes its UK premiere in Edinburgh.

http://www.edtheatres.com/addamsfamily


Monkey Business   |   Until 23rd April
(National Museum of Scotland)

The Edinburgh Collection | Monkey Business
(Image Source: National Museum Scotland)

Get up close and personal with our tree-swinging ancestors and discover all there is to know about the primate world at this family friendly event.

http://www.nms.ac.uk/national-museum-of-scotland/whats-on/monkey-business/


Athens of the North   |   Everyday

The Edinburgh Collection | Athens of the North

April celebrates World Heritage Day. With World Heritage Status, discover how Edinburgh became the Athens of the North.

http://www.ewht.org.uk/visit/trails/athens-of-the-north

The Best Edinburgh Gardens

The Best Edinburgh Gardens

The Edinburgh Collection | Edinburgh GardensEDINBURGH GARDENS…


…where the grass is greener


Edinburgh is famous for its beauty. It is known around the world for its intricate architecture and unique buildings and streets. You just need to take on look at Edinburgh’s Old Town to figure out why tourists are attracted to the stunningly, well-kept buildings.

However, an often overlooked attribute to Edinburgh’s beauty, are its many gardens.


Princes Street Gardens

Best Edinburgh Gardens | Princes Street Gardens

Princes Street Gardens is located in the centre of Edinburgh’s World Heritage Site, tucked between New Town and Old Town. It is listed in the Inventory of Gardens and Designed Landscapes in Scotland and has geological and botanical scientific interest. However, it hasn’t always been a beautiful public garden. No, you see, it has a dark past from when it was known as Nor’ Loch.

Princes Street Gardens is right opposite Old Waverley Hotel


Dr. Neil’s Garden

Edinburgh Gardens | Dr Neils Garden

Dr Neils Garden, or, Edinburgh’s Secret Garden as it is often referred to, is one of the most stunning gardens in Scotland today. It lays next to the lovely Duddingston Kirk at the foot of Arthurs Seat. You will spend hours admiring the care, dedication and imagination that comes with this garden.

Dr Neils Garden is at the foot of Arthurs Seat, near to Holyrood ApartHotel


Royal Botanic Gardens

Edinburgh Gardens | Royal Botanic Gardens


Dunbars Close

Edinburgh Gardens | Dunbar Gardens

Dunbar’s Close on the Royal Mile in Edinburgh’s Old Town is a hidden gem. The garden has been laid out in the style and character of a 17th-century garden.

Dunbar’s Close is located just off the famous Royal Mile which is a few minutes away from Holyrood ApartHotel


Malleny Gardens

Edinburgh Gardens | Malleny Gardens

Malleny Gardens is a hidden delight on the outskirts of Edinburgh. It plays host to a luscious 3-acre walled garden set in a landscape of woodland, with colourful herbaceous borders and collections of old roses. You will be able to surround yourself with clipped yew trees planted in the 17th Century along with delightfully scented flowers.

Malleny Gardens is located on the outskirts of Edinburgh. So, if you wish to visit, you will need to arrange transport.

If you’re staying at one of our hotels, we’ll be happy to help arrange this for you.

Within The Walls of Edinburgh Castle and it’s Haunted Past

Within The Walls of Edinburgh Castle and it’s Haunted Past

Scaredinburgh | Edinburgh Caslte

EDINBURGH CASTLE


WHAT SECRETS ARE STORED BETWEEN THE WALLS OF THE FAMOUS FORTRESS?


Scotland has its fair share of old fortresses, but none quite like Edinburgh Castle. What makes Edinburgh Castle so different from the rest is that it is, almost, a living and breathing creature. While St. Mary’s chapel is the only remaining part of the 12th century structure, the other parts have been added throughout the centuries. Giving it that organic feeling to it. Which means, as you know, with life, also comes death – which is all too frequent in old time Edinburgh.

As with most castles. Edinburgh Castle was used as a prison for criminals and political enemies of The Crown. Lore has it that one desperate prisoner escaped into a wheelbarrow full of manure, hoping he would be taken through the front gates to his freedom. This did not happen. He was wheeled to the west port side where the contents of the wheelbarrow were tipped off the edge and he plummeted to the ground, where obviously, he died. To this day, people mention the strong unpleasant smell of manure when they are close to the area, and some even report the uneasy feeling of unseen hands pushing them.


LADY JANET DOUGLAS


Additionally, the castles lower levels, dungeons and dark tunnels have also played host to countless tales of unexplainable experiences. Heavy breathing, knocking, hammering and moans have all been reported in these lower terrains of the fortress. All are said to be connected to Lady Janet Douglas.

Scaredinburgh | Janet Douglas
Lady Janet Douglas (image from The Paranormal Guide)

In 1528, Janet Douglas was accused of Witchcraft and conspiracy by King James V. All of her family and servants were captured and imprisoned. They were then, one-by-one, brutally tortured in order to force confessions against Ms. Douglas. Who is rumoured to have been locked in a dark room for so long, that she actually turned blind. Throughout all this, carpenters in leather aprons would walk around, crafting the wooden platform from which she was to be burned alive.


2001: A PARANORMAL ODYSSEY


In 2001, a British psychologist named Dr. Richard Wiseman wanted to get to the bottom of these storied and managed get over 200 participants for his, shall we say, unorthodox experiment. These volunteers were then screened. The screening process was in place to try and weed out anyone who may have knowledge of the stories regarding Edinburgh Castle and its haunted past.

After Dr Wiseman had verified all of his volunteers, they set to work. Wiseman and his assistants took small groups of the volunteers on tours of the castle. Now, i said this experiment was unorthodox, what I meant to say was, unethical. Some of the volunteers were actually shut and locked into dark dungeon rooms. Wiseman said this was there opportunity to make ‘personal observations’. No matter how safe it might have been, if you to image that getting locked into a castle dungeon would be pretty traumatic.

Scaredinburgh | Dungeon
The dungeons in Edinburgh castle (image from TripAdvisor)

One woman reported that her experience was filled with odd, unexplainable experiences. Heavy breathing, which moved closer and closer to her the longer she was in the room (traumatic, right?). Others hear voices and saw shadowy figures. One group unanimously said that they has seen a man walk slowly at the end of a tunnel. They said he was dressed in old fashioned clothing and wore something strange over his torso.

It was a leather carpenter’s apron.

In conclusion, there’s something about castles. Big strong structures capable of withholding even the darkest of secrets. Few castles were built to the same standards of the modern home. Whether it be a dark dungeon or the bricked up body of a victim. The strong walls of a castle can act like the dungeons many of them are famous for, holding in years of suffering, tragedy and death.

Your (great) Edinburgh Walking Guide

Your (great) Edinburgh Walking Guide

WALK IN, OUT AND AROUND HISTORY


THIS EDINBURGH WALKING GUIDE PUTS THE KING INTO WALKING.


Our Edinburgh walking guide will ensure you make the most of your visit. Edinburgh is one of the best cities to explore by foot. You’ll discover magic and get a fright.

From little local cafes and underground bars to hidden gardens and historic graveyards. The hidden gems of Edinburgh are best explored by walking. One of our favourite walks is along Queensferry Street into the West End of Edinburgh, taking around 15 minutes the walk explores some of the best hidden, undiscovered parts of Edinburgh and leads you right into the heart of the city, ending with spectacular views of Edinburgh castle and perhaps a walk through St Cuthbert’s churchyard.

After a fresh, expertly prepared breakfast at Shackleton’s Bar & Brasserie we suggest checking out some of these key points as you make your way into the heart of Edinburgh City.


Dean Village & Gardens

Edinburgh Walking Guide | Deans Village
               Dean Village, Edinburgh

To start the Edinburgh walking guide we take you to by far one of the best hidden gems in Edinburgh, Dean Village and garden. You will find them located just under Dean Bridge on the stroll in to West End. Take a slight detour and you’ll feel as if you’ve stepped back into Victorian Edinburgh. The warren of ancient cobbled streets create a sleepy yet beautiful atmosphere. Wandering through Dean Village and along the Water of Leith walkway you’ll meet an array of wildlife, from families of ducks to heron and enjoy the truly magical atmosphere of ancient, undiscovered Edinburgh.


Soderberg Bakery

Soderberg
                Soderberg Bakery, Edinburgh West End

Assuming you’ve stayed at one of our fantastic hotels you will have already enjoyed a delicious breakfast. Now it’s time for a well-deserved mid-morning pastry! The delightfully Swedish Soderberg Bakery has a few venues around Edinburgh, though the charm of their West End branch is undeniable. Slightly smaller than some of their other locations the West End Soderberg is warm, intimate and perfect for that mid-morning baked treat! Their specialty coffee comes from Johan & Nystrom whose Stockholm Café was named by The Telegraph as one of the best in the world. We recommend their delicious cinnamon and cardamom buns, or if you’re visiting in the afternoon take home one of their freshly prepared sour dough loaves, or fresh soup or salad for dinner.


St Cuthbert’s Church

St Cuthbert's Church; Walking Edinburgh; Princes Street
         View of Princes Street Gardens and St Cuthbert’s Church

At the very end of Princes Street, hidden among trees just underneath the castle. Lays perhaps one of the most beautiful Churchyards in Edinburgh. St Cuthbert’s Church was built in 1892, however there is evidence of at least 6 earlier churches on the grounds. The rich history provided by the grounds makes it a perfect place to experience the peaceful, tranquil and eerie atmosphere of Edinburgh. Additionally, it is a great place to start your walk along the beautiful Princes Street Gardens.


Princes Street Gardens

Edinburgh Collection | Princes Street Gardens
       Prince’s street gardens (image source: Wikipedia)

No Edinburgh walking guide would be complete without Princes Street Gardens. These luscious green gardens provide a stunning tranquil atmosphere. The gardens also provide some of the most spectacular views of Edinburgh Castle. It’s hard to imagine that Princes Street Gardens were once a place of witch trials and waste dumping. Luckily for us there is little trace of the areas dark history. Now the gardens are a favourite for tourists and locals. A place to relax and take in the vibrant city atmosphere. Previously to it’s renaming to Princes Street Gardens, the site was names Nor Loch. Read about it’s less than green history here.


In conclusion, Edinburgh is a city best explored by foot. With hidden gardens, cobbled streets, ancient alleyways and beautiful churches just waiting to be found. Edinburgh’s rich history can only truly be discovered by meandering the streets. Where you will start uncovering your own secret gems. Our advice is to read and re-read this Edinburgh walking guide and make sure you put aside a little time during your stay to walk the wonderful, historic streets of Edinburgh.