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Published: August 19th 2014
Twas Sunday the 3rd, what shall we do? Gather the troops and fly across the blue... Well, that's about all I got for poetry. In all seriousness, it seems that this trip was a long time planning and the time was finally here. We left on a Sunday and arrived on a Monday. We made the long wind through Heathrow to finally arrive via Virgin Atlantic's Little Red to the town of Edinburgh. Upon arrival, we took a ride on the newly opened tram from the airport to city center Edinburgh. It was a 40 minute tram ride, but for 5 pounds... you can't beat that. Add bonus, we got to see the outskirts of Edinburgh. We got off on the Princes Street Gardens stop and the first thing we see... Edinburgh Castle. What a sight and what a great introduction to the City.
Edinburgh, Scotland’s capital city, is an historical city situated on the East Coast of Scotland on the Firth Of Forth. Edinburgh has been the Scottish capital since the 15th century. It has two distinct areas: the Old Town, dominated by Edinburgh Castle; and the neoclassical New Town. The Castle resides on a rock which dates back
several centuries. When you think of the age of the City and compare it to the United States, hard to imagine or it at least brings to light how young the United States are.
After some exploring through the Princes Street Gardens, we made our way to our flat. We were staying on Spittal Street (just off of Castle Terrace), but because of how the City was laid out (in stacks full of circular streets and closes/alleyways), it took a little walking around to City to find our flat, but we finally found it. The flat is very close to the Gardens and central to everything. We stepped out of our flat, turned left and the first thing you see is the Castle. So, we couldn't have asked for a better location.
After we unpacked a little and freshened up (i.e. took a 10 minute rest which turned into an hour nap), we were ready to explore the City. We walked along the Grassmarket area and made our way to Parliament Square near the Royal Mile. This was close to where the Festival was going on. The Edinburgh Festival Fringe is the largest arts festival in the world
and takes place every August for three weeks in Edinburgh. Every year thousands of performers take to hundreds of stages throughout Edinburgh to present shows for every taste. The festival includes theatre, comedy, dance, physical theatre, circus, cabaret, children's shows, musicals, opera, music, spoken word, exhibitions and events. Luckily, we arrived just as the Festival was getting underway. It's quite a show.... all walks of life, every starving artist trying to peak your interest and entice you to see their show. Needless to say.... lots of interesting people watching to do.
After we wandered a little bit more, we made way to the Baked Potato Shop off of Cockburn Road. A shop dedicated only to Baked Potatoes. You choose your baked potato (small, medium or large), then you chose your filling. They had your basic cheese and sour cream to the more exotic, egg and mayo and even haggis if you'd like. After a long day of traveling, this was just what the doctored ordered. We went safe and settled for 2 kinds... sour cream and cheese and chili. All very good. Both hit the spot. After exploring a little more, we decided we were in the mood for
some Scottish Pies, so we yelped it and headed to the Pie Maker off of South Bridge. Vintage Cottage Pie... no more words necessary. All in all a great first day.
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