Edinburgh itinerary for families – Day one

Located on the east coast of Scotland’s central Lowlands,  on the southern shore of the Firth of Forth, Edinburgh is the capital city of Scotland. Attracting over one million     visitors a year, Edinburgh is the second most visited tourist destination in the United Kingdom. Nicknamed “Athens of the North“, Edinburgh is considered one of the historical major centres of the Enlightenment. Regarded as the symbol of the city, Edinburgh Castle cuts an imposing figure in the skyline. Edinburgh today is the product of history, Georgian grandeur and a combination of modernism with contemporary avant-garde. In this beautiful city, there are medieval palaces, historical monuments, modern architecture, Gothic churches, museums, art galleries, etc. Edinburgh is a great family destination as well, with many exciting things to see and do for parents and their children. And for this month, our ‘January Sales’ are on, where we have unbeatable exclusive offers on our property in Edinburgh.

Photos of Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh
This photo of Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art is courtesy of TripAdvisor

Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art – Start the day with a visit to one of Edinburgh’s most popular attraction. Opened in 1960, the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art was at the Royal Botanic Gardens before moving to its current home: a neo-classical building along Belford Road. One of the must-see attractions in Edinburgh, the National Gallery of Modern Art contains the national collection of contemporary and modern art including work by Picasso, Braque, Mondrian, Ben Nicholson, Matisse, Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, The Scottish Colourists, Peter Howson, Levannah Harris, Francis Bacon, Lucian Freud, Boyle Family and Douglas Gordon. During autumn, visitors can explore the delightful grounds of the gallery where they can view the outdoor art exhibits. There are two cafés conveniently located in the gallery, where parents can take a break for a coffee or have a light lunch with the children, before continuing the visit. After exploring the gallery, the entire family can head over to one of two souvenir shops where they can browse an extensive collection of art books, cards and gifts.

Opened daily from 10am to 5pm, the gallery is free to everyone although there might be a charge for special exhibitions.

Pictures of Royal Botanic Garden, Edinburgh
This photo of Royal Botanic Garden is courtesy of TripAdvisor

Royal Botanic Gardens, Edinburgh (RBGE) – After leaving the museum, take a short walk or bus ride along the charming elegant New Town’s streets and head over to Edinburgh’s Royal Botanic Gardens. Founded in 1670 as a physic garden to grow medicinal plants, it is today in addition to being a popular tourist attraction, a scientific centre for the study of plants, their diversity and conservation. There are a total of four sites across Scotland — Edinburgh, Dawyck, Logan and Benmore — each with its own specialist collection and Edinburgh being the main garden. This second oldest botanic garden in Britain has more than 15,000 plant species, (41,00 accessions) whilst the herbarium contains over three million preserved specimens. Covering approximately 70 acres, the garden is a popular place to go for a leisurely walk, particularly with families. There are many activities for families to do in the gardens as throughout the year RBGE hosts many events including live performances, guided tours and exhibitions. If the weather permits, we highly recommend packing a picnic for the entire family and having it in one of the many grassy areas dotted around the gardens. It is free to go into the gardens, although a small entry charge exists for the glasshouses.

Opening times
The Garden is open daily (except 25 December and 1 January).
Garden & Gateway opening hours
November to January: 10am – 4pm
February & October: 10am – 5pm
March to September: 10am – 6pm

Glasshouses close:
November to January: 3.30pm (last admission 3pm)
February & October:  4.30pm (last admission 4pm)
March to September: 5.30pm (last admission 5pm)

Photos of Real Mary King's Close, Edinburgh
This photo of Real Mary King’s Close is courtesy of TripAdvisor

Mary King’s Close – After a nice lunch at the gardens, walk down the historic Royal Mile and head to one of the city’s spookiest and most popular attractions. Kids are bound to love this one! This famous tourist attraction is an old Edinburgh Close under buildings in the Old Town area of Edinburgh. During the Christmas  of 1644, a plague, thought to have been brought by ship from Europe via the port of Leith, and spread by fleas carried on black rats, erupted across the land. Over the following 18 months, this plague killed a substantial part of the Scottish population. It was particularly bad in Edinburgh and the population of Mary King’s Close dwindled down to an alarming number. At one point, Mary King’s Close was partially demolished and buried under the Royal Exchange, and closed off to the public for many years. As time passed the close became shrouded in myths and urban legends; tales of ghosts and grisly murders, and myths of plague victims being walled up and left to die abounded. Mary King’s Close was eventually re-opened to the public in April 2003 and is now a thriving commercial tourist attraction, showing how life in Edinburgh was like between the sixteenth and nineteenth centuries. Parents and their children can investigate the fascinating series of underground passages with an eerie tour guide dressed as a former resident of the street and listen to the spooky stories this place holds! Given the popularity of this attraction, its highly recommended to book prior.

Opening times

  • November 1st – March 29th
    Sunday – Thursday
    10.00 – 17.00 (last tour)
    Friday & Saturday
    10.00 – 21.00 (last tour)
  • March 30th – October 31st 
    Monday – Sunday 10 – 21.00 (last tour)
  • August 3rd – August 28th
    Monday – Sunday 09.30 – 23.00 (last tour)

Photos of The Edinburgh Dungeon, Edinburgh
This photo of The Edinburgh Dungeon is courtesy of TripAdvisor

Edinburgh Dungeon – What better way to cap off this fantastic day than experiencing this popular, visceral, and often hair raising attraction? This family attraction based at the imposing Castle takes visitors through a thousand years of Scottish history, and the blood curdling crimes and punishments that were part and parcel of life in the country’s capital. Boasting state of the art exhibits that draw tens of thousands of visitors every year,  Edinburgh Dungeon promises to be a exciting and fun time for the family. Featuring period-costumed actors who help to bring the dungeon’s history to life, visitors get a glimpse of how the dungeon and its warders operated and what were the fate of those incarcerated within its fearsome walls. Accompanied by special sound and lighting effects, and some grisly sights, a ride takes visitors on a journey illustrating just how hard life was for the tribes that lived in Scotland’s harsh countryside for centuries. Edinburgh Dungeon is an eclectic mix of historical facts, education, fantasy and entertainment. The various rides and exhibitions ensures that families and especially children have a thrilling and captivating time.

For your visit to Edinburgh, consider staying at our luxury property – Fraser Suites Edinburgh. And right now for a limited period, enjoy our “January sales” promotion…Start saving as of the first night and enjoy greater discount the longer you stay: up to 20% off!  Exclusive offer is available only on our website. This brand new boutique hotel in Edinburgh is set in a stunning 1750s sandstone building on historic St Giles Street, off the Royal Mile. The Observatory Suite boasts original wood panelling and a private balcony, while the Prince Suite glows in light from historic stained glass windows. Some rooms have fireplaces, twilled silk curtains and specially commissioned paintings. All are sumptuously decorated in Designers Guild fabrics; Villeroy & Boch bathrooms have luxurious rain showers and designer lotions.

Our luxury boutique hotel – with restaurant, gym and self catering facilities – offers comfortable short and long stay Edinburgh accommodation. Ideal for corporate guests, business travellers, families and couples enjoying a city break in Edinburgh, Scotland. Fraser Suites Edinburgh accommodation includes several categories of room to suit your needs. Apartments boast full self-catering facilities, while even Classic rooms have a fridge, microwave, crockery and cutlery. All rooms in this top Edinburgh hotel offer high-speed internet, iPod docks and daily maid service. Take advantage of our fitness suite, city centre shuttle bus, self-service laundry, along with our signature restaurant, The Broadsheet Bistro where breakfast is served. Stay at Fraser Suites Edinburgh and you’re in the buzzing heart of Scotland’s capital, steps from the Royal Mile, Princes Street and Edinburgh Castle. Hotel facilities include a city centre shuttle bus, but most top Edinburgh attractions are within easy walking distance, including the National Gallery of Scotland and Arthur’s Seat. Restaurants, bars, cafés and shops surround this fantastically located hotel in Edinburgh’s Old Town.

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One thought on “Edinburgh itinerary for families – Day one

  1. Anonymous says:

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