Christmas in Edinburgh – Countdown begins

November 4th, 2014
Princes Street Gardens

Princes Street Gardens

Christmas Festivities in Edinburgh

Christmas festivities in Edinburgh starts early – in fact the countdown begins in November. Princes Street Gardens and St Andrews Square is the festival hub and includes ice skating rinks, Christmas markets and fairground rides including a Big Wheel boasting amazing views over the city.

There is a packed calender of festivities but below are a few of our favourite reasons to visit Edinburgh over Christmas:

Christmas Parties

THE  ultimate party night right in Edinburgh’s  heart – welcome drinks and canapes – an award winning brigade of chefs delivering an outstanding festive supper followed by the headline show – Scotch and Soda – be transported in an evening of raucous circus, dance and music.

European Christmas Market

This popular event is held in a picturesque setting below the Mound, along East Princes Street Gardens and around Scott Monument – it is a unique shopping experience – a fair of crafters, artisan gastronomy, artists and gifts. Truly unusual gifts. A must!

The Ice Rink

Set beneath the backdrop of the Castle with tutorials available if needed – spectacular.

The Great Santa Fun Run

Happens on the 14th December, is colourful, hilarious and raises much cash for a great cause.

…and it all begins with …

Light Night

on the 23rd November.

With a series of stages up and down George Street, this event is for the community and by the community. An estimated total of 1,250 performers, each performing an act, a dance, a song or a piece of music to celebrate all things Christmas on one of the stages.

Not to be missed – book up accommodation now and join the buzz in the build up to Christmas in Edinburgh.

 

Commonwealth Games, Ryder Cup and other sports events

July 16th, 2014

Apart from the global World Cup football which filled every bar in every nation, Scotland is playing host to the Ryder Cup in Gleneagles and the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. Scotland is alive with sports events in 2014.

Sport is about competition and competition is about pride and there is plenty of pride in Scotland. 

First in the packed calender, starting on the 23rd July is The Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games. Not just about sport but a celebration of the cultures and history of  the 71 nations taking part from all over the Commonwealth. There will be associated events all across Scotland.  The Games was first held in 1930, this is the third to be held in Scotland and the first to come to Glasgow. A total of 4,500 athletes – will converge on Glasgow, playing 17 sports over 11 days of competition that includes 261 medals. Pride in abundance!

But Scotland plays host to regular sports events – and the Ryder Cup is arguably one of the most famous. This golf tournament has it’s roots in Scotland and a long, established tradition has built up over 93 years. All cities, including Edinburgh offer accommodation with links to golf courses and there are many ways to plan the perfect Golf Package.

So whether you are a spectator or an active participant, Scotland is bursting with inspiration and sport adventure – book your tripGlasgow2014 very soon!

 

 

Homecoming Festival Scotland

April 3rd, 2014

Scotland is welcoming the world to a year long Homecoming  Festival of arts, sports, food, nature and culture. Edinburgh  is proud to host many events. B+B Edinburgh have highlighted a few below. So if it is the great outdoors, the thrill of  adrenalin sports or more gentle cultural,historical and nature events that you love – Homecoming Edinburgh is for you!

Edinburgh International Science festival starts in 2 days time. GastroFest is a mini event offering the chance to learn about the science of food and drink – the mixology of wonderful cocktails and the mastery of molecules! You’ll need a comfy bed to tumble in to after all that!

John Muir Festival – celebrating the world renowned Scots born lover of nature . 21st April sees the opening of the John Muir Way which will zig-zag through the city highlighting our scenic suburbs to the lochs beyond.

Sports lovers will arrive for the Ryder Cup and the Commonwealth Games – 2 huge events on the world sporting calenders. But there are others - B+B Edinburgh welcomes runners for the Edinburgh Marathon Festival - a family festival with heaps going on – its fast, flat and packed with fun events and happens on the 24th May.

 

So whenever you come to Edinburgh, there is going to be something amazing happening in 2014. Our team our bursting to share their knowledge and help you plan your stay!

 

Food Events in Edinburgh

October 21st, 2013

A trip to Scotland’s capital city is not going to leave you feeling hungry – the city is bursting with a colourful foodie scene ranging from  funky street vendors to fine high end cuisine.

A good way to plan your adventure is to hook in to the thriving Food Festival Calender and book your B+B around the one that tickles most!

See below for a quick look at some of the festival’s and events we at B+B Edinburgh really really rate:

Edinburgh Farmers Market : held every Saturday under  the backdrop of the Castle – this is the largest market in Scotland. Over 55 purveyors, producers, farmers and distributors trade alongside bakers, butchers, home cooks and professional chefs to create a bustling market – 15 minutes walk from B+B Edinburgh’s front door.

Stockbridge Market: Edinburgh’s ‘other’ farmers market – held every Sunday in Edinburgh’s bohemian quarter - a passion for small traders, this market also sells Arts and Crafts and is a fab place to choose Christmas presents.

Cookery Schools: Edinburgh’s New Town Cookery School offers a whole range of courses for all abilities. Boasting fantastic  views across the Firth of Forth, classes can be short and sweet or residential including B+B with us. Closer to us is in Stockbridge is  Cookingmania – Edinburgh’s newest cookery school. This  offers a homely feel, where  families are also welcome.

Foodies Festival Christmas is hosted at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre in December. Foodies from all walks of life feast on an array of chef demonstrations, Drinks masterclasses and independent food stores over 2 days. Call the Team at B+B Edinburgh to find out dates and book your accommodation in plenty of time.

Contact the Team at B+B Edinburgh to benefit from Winter Offers and tap in to the exciting foodie scene in Edinburgh. A warm welcome always awaits.

 

Abracadabra: it’s the Edinburgh International Magic Festival

May 2nd, 2013

Magicians have seen a resurgence of sort in recent years, after street magicians such as David Blaine, Derren Brown and Dynamo brought their art to the public to show us that it’s not all sparkles and glamorous assistants and that you can be mesmerised by even the simplest trick, provided the magician is engaging and intelligent enough to persuade you that magic really did just take place.

The perfect place to showcase the world’s top magicians – from the sequin-clad traditionalists to the hoodie-wearing new breeds therefore is surely the Edinburgh International Magic Festival. It has become one of the city’s most talked-about events, holding demonstrations of classic illusions and modern tricks. The festival is hosted from 28th June until the 5th July.

Opening Gala
Starting with huge gala on opening night, you will see some of the world’s top magicians and illusionists showing you what incredible things they have in store for you. The Magic Dinner is an amazing spectacle which will transport you to Wonderland using the talents of a Sleight of Hand Artist, an illusionist, a classically trained singer, a pianist and physical theatre performer. They will all work together to bring you a three-course-meal you will never forget, unique in both style and substance.

Booking
You must pre-book tickets for most of the events included in the festival, although there are free events on offer, including a full show at SKYbar and many street performers eager to show you their talents. There are also workshops for those looking to get into the profession of magic, either for fun or as a serious career change. Professional magicians will show you some of the tricks of the trade too and peak your interest to get you performing to friends and family upon your return.

For all the Family
This is a festival that can be fun for all the family and as it runs over such a long period of time, you can take your kids without missing school. There are some wonderful family shows including a swash-buckling stage show called ‘A Great Adventure’ by family-friendly magicians Morgan & West who have been performing at fringes and festivals for many years. They will be premiering this particular show at the EIMF so it is one not to be missed. Younger children can be entranced by Scotland’s ‘Children’s Entertainer of the Year’, Tricky Ricky, who’s polished performance is perfect for keeping the whole family smiling. His fast-paced and crazy show is exciting and witty and will keep adults and children entertained.

There are shows involving close-up magic from mind-reading to card tricks and shows combining comedy with magic, including some of the UK’s top comedians. Compelling late-night magic shows such as Colin McLeod, Marcus Gordon and Elliot Bibby’s “Late Night Myths”, is an exciting look at mind-boggling mental manipulation. The program is extensive and this really is a must-see for anyone slightly interested in the world of magic and illusion.

If you’re planning a trip to Edinburgh for the International Magic Festival or one of the other international events hosted, make sure to make our bed and breakfast your base in Edinburgh.

Live Panda-cam set-up in Edinburgh Zoo

April 4th, 2013

Here at B+B Edinburgh, we find that many of our guests are keen to visit Edinburgh Zoo to visit the giant pandas. Even if you aren’t able to make it to Edinburgh, you know have a chance to watch the Pandas from a live webcam set up in their enclosure. The camera view switches from both the indoor and outdoor enclosure and follows the zoo’s two giant pandas Tian Tian and Yang Guang.

Giant pandas are an endangered species and Edinburgh Zoo hopes they will breed successfully during their 10 year loan from China. The cameras have been installed at this time as it’s mating season for the pandas. During this time Tian Tian and Yang Guang will be more active, displaying mating behaviours such as scent marking, and in Yang Guang, the male panda’s case, eating more bamboo and trying to impress his potential mate by doing headstands! The zoo has insisted that no funny business will be streamed on the web-cams, and the panda cameras are live and ready to view on the Edinburgh Zoo website.

The cameras and organisation of the camera set up were donated to Edinburgh Zoo by the company Indiago Vision. To test the sensitivity of the motion detecting cameras, two of the zoo staff dressed up in panda costumes and mimicked Tian Tian and Yang Guang’s movements within their enclosure. There is footage of the humans pretending to be the pandas on the Indigo Vision’s Youtube channel. Edinburgh Zoo has a track record for mixing animals and technology. The zoo is also home to ten chimpanzees who starred in the BBC Two documentary ‘The Chimpcam Project’ which recorded the footage created when the chimps were given camcorders to play with and use in their enclosure.

With a climate that matches the Sichuan Province in China, Edinburgh offers the perfect environment for its pandas. Most zoos have to artificially recreate the conditions for their panda enclosures, but the Edinburgh weather offers the right temperatures and humidity to grow lots of bamboo naturally.

If you want to see the pandas in person, it’s no extra cost to visit their enclosure but you have to pre-book tickets for certain time slots. Edinburgh Zoo is also home to sun bears, the smallest and rarest bears in the world. The Budongo Trail is home to the zoo’s 10 chimpanzees and is used to study the different behavioural patterns of the animals. The Budongo Trail also gives visitors a chance to meet the chimpanzees up close. There is another web-cam installed in the squirrel monkey’s enclosure, used to study and record interactions between the monkeys.

Edinburgh Zoo is great fun for both kids and grown-ups and entry to the Zoo starts at £15.50 for adults and £11 for children, although you can save by buying family discount tickets. Flights to Edinburgh from London are available from London City Airport and take just 80 minutes making Edinburgh a great choice for a UK city break. Aside from the pandas and chimpanzees at the zoo, there are other exciting attractions such as the Edinburgh Dungeons where live actors perform gory stories of Scotland’s past, Holyrood House – the official residence of the Queen, and Edinburgh Castle which sits in the city centre on a hill of volcanic rock.

Art Can Be Fun – Top 5 Must-See Museums in Edinburgh

March 25th, 2013

Well, irrespective of whether you want to catch a glimpse of the amazing 18th century Britain, go back in time and meet the mighty T-Rex or perhaps marvel at the artistic genius of the finest artists of all time, the Edinburgh museums are the right place for it. While the galleries featuring world-renowned paintings and sculptures will usually charge an entry fee, the good news is that most museums in Edinburgh are free of charge.

Moreover, most of them include cozy cafés where you and your friends can exchange impressions over a latte or a nice cup of tea. Furthermore, some museums organize guided tours and special events all year long; let’s summarize the top free museums that you should include in your bucket list next time you’re in Edinburgh.

  1. The Writer’s Museum

Located in a site that exhales history through every pore, The Writer’s Museum has been founded for the purpose of celebrating Scotland’s greatest novelists of all time. Regardless of whom your favorite Scottish author is, be it Robert Louis Stevenson, Robert Burns or Sir Walter Scott, this museum is the perfect place to check out rare books, personal effects and valuable portraits of the aforementioned writers.

  1. National  Museum Of Scotland

Recently renovated, the National Museum of Scotland constitutes a fine location to spend your day exploring and learning more about the diversity of the world’s cultures, natural environments, science and technology, art, design and the history of the land. This year the museum will host two great exhibits that are considered must-see events for anyone passionate about history, the Vikings and the Mary, Queen of Scotts collections.

  1. The People’s Story Museum

Many find the idea of following common people’s life in the past throughout various more or less ordinary situations quite interesting. Housed in the notorious 1591 historic site, the Canongate Tollbooth, People’s Story represents a reverential glimpse of the people who lived in Edinburgh. The attraction of the museum is the jailhouse, which is a part of the original facility packed with real objects used in those times.

  1. Museum of Childhood

How would you feel about taking a stroll down memory lane, back to the happy times of your childhood? In the case that you would like to relive your dearest and happiest moments of that wonderful period of your life, then the Museum of Childhood is the best place to visit. Integrating vast collections of toys and games children used to play with, the exhibits you can find here could prove very interesting and maybe provide an eye-opening experience for your own kids as well.

  1. Museum on the Mound

While everyone needs money to get by nowadays, the truth is that few of them know the story of how the concept of money appeared, its evolution and how it managed to become the most important thing in modern society. The Museum on the Mound takes you on a highly interesting journey and allows you to discover the fascinating history of cash! Ironically, even though this museum displays over one million pounds in cash, the admission is free.

If you’re looking for a place to crash after exploring and absorbing all this history – look no further than our 4* bed and breakfast in Edinburgh’s West End.

Image via Flickr

Science in Scotland – What to Expect from the Edinburgh International Science Festival

March 7th, 2013

Looking for somewhere to both entertain and educate your children this spring? Try Edinburgh seminal science festival for two weeks of mind-blowing information.

April brings with it spring, sunshine and also science! From March 23rd until April 7th Edinburgh will turn into a scientist’s dream with two weeks of incredible shows, talks and experiments from people who really know their stuff.

The organisers of this massive event have put every effort into making sure there is something for everyone – your little intrepid space traveller can hear talks about the first mission to Mars by the actual General Director of Mars One, the company who recruited members for this seminal moment in space travel.

Or is your son or daughter into true crime, constantly pretending to be a detective or policeman? Why not try out the Crime Scene Investigation workshop, which gives kids the chance to see a mocked-up crime scene and solve it using skills learned from the experts.

If you have a little girl who thinks science is only for boys, you can educate her on the women who have shaped scientific and technological life as we know it through an incredibly informative exhibition called Scottish Women of Science: Celebrating Trailblazers from our Past. This may help sow the seeds of a future scientist ready to explore and save the world.

There are many other exhibition and talks on offer from subjects like geology and paleontology to marine biology and astronomy. And it’s not just for the kids; parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles will all find something to enjoy and new things to learn and take home with you, making the pub quiz a little easier! Also, with the festival lasting two weeks, it is the perfect excuse for a weekend away or an excursion for half term. Educational and affordable, it is a fantastic way of sneaking a bit of education into your kids’ school holidays.

If you are looking for a place to rest your head after it has been filled with so much knowledge, B+B Edinburgh is an excellent choice, offering comfortable and affordable accommodation for the whole family. With a hearty breakfast included, you can be sure that you and your little scientists are ready to absorb even more awe-inspiring information.

Edinburgh Celebrates Burns Night

January 4th, 2013

The New Year is over yet there is no need to rest. After visitors were blown away by Edinburgh’s world famous end of year celebrations, January 2013 can seem like a lull in excitement as people begin their diets and choose to stay in.

However, those searching for a weekend break and found themselves begrudgingly watching Jools Holland on New Years Eve, can receive an injection of fun to break up this traditionally dreary month. Join in the celebration of Scotland’s national bard, Robert Burns on the 25th of January..

What goes on?

Visitors are welcome to join recitals of Burn’s poetry amid toasts to the great man. Prepare for a traditional haggis meal presented by bagpipers: the definitive way to celebrate his birthday. Finishing with the melancholic yet warming sing a long of ‘Auld Lang Syne’, this is the definitive Scottish celebration.

Edinburgh’s Burns Parties

There are no shortage of venues which offer visitors the chance to join this popular festival. Each of those below is dedicated to celebrating it to the fullest.

Burns Night at Prestoungrange Gothenburg – The Goth, as it is called by Edinburgh locals, hosts a Family Burns Storytelling Ceilidh with storyteller Tim Porteus. The festivities include dancing, singing, and poetry for the whole family to enjoy.

Burns Night in Edinburgh at The Tass – The Tass, Edinburgh’s beloved Burns pub, hosts Burns suppers from January 23rd to 25th with storytellers David Campbell and Linda Bandelier. Expect to be wowed by their poetry recitations, songs, and stories as you enjoy a traditional dinner

Accommodation

Those searching for comfortable, yet modern surroundings to stay the night will be delighted with B+B Edinburgh’s unique take on 3-star hotel quality. Enjoy a hearty breakfast after your previous evenings celebrations. You can also see breathtaking views of the city from our location, which includes, the not too far away, Edinburgh Castle.

Edinburgh’s Christmas Extravaganza takes inspiration from New York

December 7th, 2012

Visitors from across the Atlantic, or those searching for a city with it all will feel at home in Edinburgh this Christmas.

Edinburgh is set to rival the world’s major cities with a New York style ice-rink. It is being unveiled as one of many winter wonderland attractions. Half a million people are expected to flock to the city. If they can’t skate, they will certainly be inspired to on their visit.

A huge 22ft Christmas tree covered in over a thousand lights will stand strong and bright beside the rink. Weary skaters will be able to rest beside it in an après ski area with a mince pie and a glass of mulled wine to flush away any aches.

The ice rink is just one of the new attractions planned to make the event even bigger and better than last year. “The site is looking better than it has ever looked, it is beautiful and really spectacular”, said the event producer, Nickie Gott.

“We have new elements like the 3D cinema and we’ve tried to 
create more of a Times Square experience”.

 

Get the Party Started

The extravagant show takes inspiration from the city’s history of invention and engineering. A giant Saint Claus wearing a kilt will lead other festive characters through the crowds of revelers and up The Mound towards Edinburgh’s christmas tree.

Ongoing festive fun

Visitors will be entertained throughout the month.

• See reindeer in St Andrew Square, December 9-23, visit them between 11am-3pm.

• Edinburgh’s Ice Rink, November to 6 January 2013.

Christmas comfort

Not all of the attractions can be enjoyed to the full in a short visit; B+B Edinburgh are aiming to match the cities New York inspiration with copious American comfort and famous Scottish hospitality. Our plentiful breakfast range and modern rooms provide the perfect retreat after a thrilling day enjoying the festive celebrations.

Image provided by flicker.