Edinburgh. It was a rough start getting there with several flight delays, but we were rewarded with a stretch of weather that was the most sunny the UK has seen in a while. Seriously, of the 16 days we were there it rained twice.
One of the favorite things we did was a distillary tour, you can’t go to Scotland and not see how Whisky is made. :-)
This was a huge highlight of the trip for Ryan…anyone recognize it? Yep, that’s right, St. Andrews. Around 2 hours by car but they also have train rides from Edinburgh.
- On this trip we did a couple of bus tours, which we didn’t do in Italy. It partly felt kind of touristy, but at the same time it was a great way to see a large amount of things all at once. We did a tour with The Wee Red Bus that was excellent. The guide was very knowledgeable and entertaining.
- Distillery tour. Really you can’t go to Scotland and not do a tour of a distillery. With the bus tour we visited Glengoyne and it was pretty good.
- Where we stayed. We stayed in an airbnb flat that was very close to the Royal Mile. It was really fun to be so close to the life of the city.
- Speaking of, the Royal Mile was great. A lot of fun and wonderful people watching
- Stirling Castle- I liked this castle much more than the Edinburgh castle. They had free walking tours and felt much more authentic.
- So, I didn’t love the Edinburgh Castle. It seemed too 4th grade field trip museum-y to me. But I think that it’s one of those places you still have to go visit. If you go at 1pm they shoot the cannon which is pretty neat.
- The Holyrood Palace this was just a personal nay– we didn’t have time to visit
- Bars stay open pretty late, but restaurants typically stop serving food around 8. So if you are out and about all day and don’t get to dinner until later you will be out of luck.
Due to some travel delays (ahem, United Airlines) we didn’t get to spend much time in York, but it was a really fun little town!
- The York Minster. BEAUTIFUL. There is more medieval stained glass in this building than in the rest of England combined. The glass survived WWII because it was disassembled and hidden in homes throughout Yorkshire. (Thanks for the tidbit Rick Steves)
- There is a fantastic and adorable little coffee shop just off of Lendal Bridge called The Perky Peacock. One of the better cups of coffee had on the trip according to Ryan.
Honestly we didn’t spend enough time to have too many nays with York
- Yorkshire pudding… so it’s basically gravy on bread. Which, believe me, I love gravy and I love bread. But a whole plate was a little overwhelming. You HAVE to try it if you are there, but maybe share one plate with the group.
- The Travellodge. Don’t judge us, we waited until last minute to book this one. And it may have just been circumstance because we ended up being there during a heat wave, but the no AC was killer.