Happy Travel Tuesday! Okay I know it’s not officially a thing anymore, but Tuesdays are Travel themed for me now, so I shall continue in the spirit of it (Link up to come!). Today I’m sharing a post I’ve been wanting to do for a while – give a few suggestions for day trips from Edinburgh.
Most people I talk to who come to Scotland, come for the gorgeous Highland or to visit the capital, Edinburgh. Often, not much else. Understandable for a short trip, but there is obviously much more to visit.
From Edinburgh, you can take the train into many other places in Scotland and today I’m sharing my top 3 best locations for a day trip from the capital. This means, buying a cheaper return (round trip) ticket and staying in your accommodation in Edinburgh, all while getting to see a bit more of this beautiful country.
1. North Berwick
North Berwick is a town a mere 30 minutes south from the centre of Edinburgh by train. It’s a beautiful coastal town renown for its seafood and sealife.
I would definitely recommend stopping by the Scottish Seabird Centre. A ticket is good for the entire day and there is lots to see and learn. When I was there in 2014, it was around the time when seals were giving birth to their babies and it was fascinating! From there you can also admire the Bass Rock, which hosts the largest Northern gannet colony. You can also golf of course, and visit the beautiful Tantallon Castle ruins (though this may require a car or long walk out of town).
For food, I highly recommend the Buttercup cafe – it’s cosy and offers delicious food. A visit to North Berwick wouldn’t be complete without a stop at the Lobster Shack, which serves beautiful, fresh seafood during the summer.
2. St Andrews
Of course it would be on my list! St Andrews is of course very personal to me. It’s engraved in my heart and my mind forever.
St Andrews is another cosy coastal town – it lies about one hour north of Edinburgh, in the Kingdom of Fife. It is famous for being the ‘home’ of golf, for its world-famous university (the first one to be founded in Scotland) and its beautiful beaches.
Depending on what you’re looking to do, St Andrews has a lot to offer. You can roam the countless cafes and little shops and pass your time in the beautiful fairy-tale-like bookshop Topping & Co. You can go for a golf lesson or a full 18 holes on one of its many golf courses. You can visit the Castle ruins, or roam around the Cathedral ruins. You can have some ice cream and visit the three very different beaches. You can walk around the town and see the vestiges of 600 years of traditions by observing the students, how they were scarlet gowns, jump over cobble stones or seem to be throwing buckets of water at each other.
There is something for everyone. If you want more about St Andrews, please see my page on St Andrews here, it includes recommendation for restaurants and cafes, explanations for all the different student traditions, as well as a bucket lists if you’re a student or simply visiting.
Linlithgow is a lovely town about 20 minutes by train from Edinburgh. It has a nice suburb feel to it, but has many royal and historical connections – that is where Mary Queen of Scots was born back in the 1500s.
One of the best thing about it is definitely its heritage trail. You can download the map with information here. It’s a fun walk across the town that brings you to the different historical sites. We did parts of it back in May and ended our day visiting the chapel and the palace – which are definitely worth the visit. We spent the evening enjoying ice cream in the sun by the loch. Definitely peaceful and beautiful.
You can pass by the canals, which date back to the early 1800s, enjoy some fine chocolate, and pass by the epically named ‘Far From the Madding Crowd’ bookshop on the high street.
Ever been to any of these? Would you add any other towns to the list?xx