Edinburgh wins at Christmas. The wonderfully old, gothic city is my favourite in the whole of the UK and the beauty of it is only made better when it’s festive’d up to the eyeballs.
A group of us spent the first weekend of December visiting the city, celebrating a birthday and exploring the Edinburgh’s Christmas Markets.
Arriving on the Friday, we checked into Motel One on Market Street. Just a short walk from Waverley Train Station and an event shorter walk to the Royal Mile in one direction and Princes Street in another, it’s the perfect central location at a cracking price.
We’ve stayed in the Motel One at Newcastle previously and had been equally impressed with the quality of accommodation for the price. Whilst the rooms are basic, and essentially all you need when it’s just somewhere to put your head, the reception and bar areas have consistently been modern yet cosy, a lush little place to relax and enjoy a few drinks.
Or in our case, end your evening after a boatload of drinks…
We got a room on the fifth floor, which is only accessed via a hefty little walk, over an indoor footbridge to an adjoining hotel and then up two different lifts. I’d be wary of this, if such a situation would cause problems, you may want to request to be in the main building. It didn’t bother us, but I was canny shocked that I didn’t get lost once throughout the entire weekend.
And it was quite worth it to have such a beautiful view from our room.
Out the front of the hotel, you were welcomed by the lights and festivities from Edinburgh’s Christmas.
It’s, of course, incredibly busy throughout the market but it all just adds to the atmosphere and actually protects you from the winter chill. I recommend grabbing a cheeky mulled wine or craft ale to walk round with and suddenly the crowds and queues become much more bearable…
There’s a huge range of stalls, with artisan produce, handmade gifts, food and drink from around the world and even fairground games. Everything a cracking Christmas Market needs.
Is it a Christmas Market without a German Sausage? Nope.
Or a warm, salty pretzel? Absolutely not.
We took advantage of all we could whilst we were there, drinking ale and attempting win giant teddies on impossible games mostly.
But it’s also nice to just wander, head up to the top of the areas and you have a cracking view of the entire market, perfect for a frosty little selfie.
Traditional bagpipes blare out as you walk around too, pretty sure there’s only one song they ever play though?
It’s impossible to not feel jolly and utterly Christmassy! Especially as the dark draws in and everything begins to look even more beautiful than before.
Everywhere you look in Edinburgh is stunning, and they get massively involved in Christmas. So it’s the perfect festive break for December.
I’d highly recommend the Motel One Edinburgh Royal (Market Street) for easy access to all areas of the city, wonderful views and brilliant service. Plus there’s a spoons opposite, which every Northerner will appreciate. But regardless of your hotel, you should absolutely visit Edinburgh in December.
For evening festivities, one evening we headed to The Three Sisters on Cowgate, which was almost like a mini Christmas Market of its own!
With live acoustic singers inside the pub, huge outdoor screens for the sports as well as an array of Yuletide lights, food stalls and booze in the bustling courtyard, you can keep everyone happy here.
If you love proper, traditional pubs, I’d recommend heading to the Grassmarket, definitely have a work along the Royal Mile for amazing architecture and authentic Scottish scenes and for highstreet shoppers and those who love a swanky bar and incredible food, head to George Street.
There’s something for everyone and flawless when it comes to shopping, food, festive feels and potato scones on your breakfast, there’s no wonder it’s my favourite UK destination.
Where’s your favourite UK city? Or destination for a December break? Drop me a tweet @ProperScrummy.
Lots of love, LB x