Edinburgh Stories and Tips

An Overview of Our 2 Weeks in Edinburgh

Edinburgh Castle Photo, Edinburgh, Scotland

After our one week home exchange in Carlisle, England, we headed for a two week exchange in Edinburgh, which we often called Edinbrrrrrrra, although the weather was pretty decent for May. It would start out chilly in the morning and then, around 5 PM (!), it would warm up and the sun would be out and it was delightful until almost 10 PM. That shows how far north Scotland is. The days are much longer here than Nice or Chicago - Sunrise today was 4:47 and sunset at 9:34. Compare this to Chicago
with sunrise at 5:23 and sunset at 8:13 or Nice with 5:58 and 8:58. Edinburgh has more than 16 1/2 hours of daylight while Chicago has 14 3/4. Almost two hours more. Amazing. Great for exploring.


Getting around Edinburgh was easy. We were staying in the Stockbridge area of the city, quite convenient although not center-city. The buses were easy to figure out and usually we took a bus into town in the mornings and then walked home, since we lived downhill, unless we were exhausted. The walks home were lovely, through beautiful crescent-shaped neighborhoods, lined with lovely townhouses with park areas in the middle.

The city is built on many levels, with the Castle on a promontory high above the main streets and other areas, like Dean Village, below level. The main street is Princes Street, and nearby is a deep green where people sun and picnic on the nicer days. The Mound, just east of the castle, has beautiful buildings soaring high. It's tricky to walk around, much up and down and stairways, with funny little streets. It's a bit brooding with all the dark gray stone. It makes for challenging walking but great views.

There are several interesting museums in the city and, like London, almost all are free, stretching your travel dollars. But the US dollar, while we were there, was very weak. We would have a meal and think, oh, that's not so bad - 40 pounds. Then we'd realize that it was $80. Luckily, the dollar has strengthened since then and the pound has practically collapsed, so that it's only 1.5 X for the conversion instead of 2 X.

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