Edinburgh!!!!

Trip Start Jun 10, 2007
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Trip End Ongoing


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Flag of United Kingdom  ,
Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Edinburgh is fantastically vibrant. It is much bigger than imagined. There is about 500,000 people not including the hordes of tourists. Once we got settled we walked the "royal mile". The main street that is inundated with countless pubs and even more tourist traps of tours and keepsake shops.
It being Canada day we found a pub that had Canadian quiz night. It was really cool to walk into the bar and to hear the tragically hip and see a bar full of other canadians all decked out in their Canadian gear. Many with flags draped over them like capes. The pub offered a Canadian menu with such things as pancakes with maple syrup or poutine all washed down with a bottle of moosehead or sleeman honey brown!  Perfect. There were about 100 or so people in there all on different teams. We decided to call ourselves "team Chesterfield" (maybe it should have been team loveseat as there were only two of us). Needless to say team Chesterfield won the whole thing!  We won about 24 that we could only spend in that pub that night so we shared with our fellow canadians and met some new friends. A fabulous night!

The next day we went on a free walking tour of Edinburgh done by our hostel (the best hostel so far I should add).
We stopped for lunch in "the last drop" pub. A pub where all those that were to be hanged had their last meal and drink. The pub is on the main square where the gallows once stood. We couldn't think of a better place to try haggis (see picture). It was pretty good actually. It is served with tatties and neeps (mashed potatoes and turnip - well actually rutabagas originally it was turnip hence the nickname). It tasted like shepherds pie.
We then visited the royal museum of Scotland. It is quite large and has a room for just about everything in it. Very nice and well put together.
That evening we went on a literary pub crawl. It is put on by actors that portray Scottish literary giants differently. one argued they got their inspiration from the mean streets of Edinburgh and the other argued for more aristocratic influence. It was a good way to learn both takes on what inspired their literary legends like Sir Walter  Scott, Sir Arthur conan Doyle, Stevenson, and of course Robbie burns.
The next day we toured the streets of the new town (well built in the 1700s) and then stopped for a tour of the Scottish parliament at holyrood. The building itself is only about 3 years old but they have been sitting since 1998 (after ceasing to exist with amalgomation in 1707).
An incredibly modern building with virtually no right angles in any of the structural architecture. It comes with all the bells and whistles including instant electronic voting for the members.
We wanted to stop by the royal palace but the queen is in town and therefore no public access. Who does she think she is? The queen of England?
After over three weeks of pub food we needed a break. We decided on Italian and truly enjoyed a night of wine pasta and pizza. Of course we managed to squeeze in a deep dried Mars bar on our way home!  Couldn't leave Edinburgh without that. It was incredible!  It sounds a little much but it was just lovely.
Edinburgh was our favourite place so far. Incredible experience.
Back to England!
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Comments

nanu
nanu on

Checking In With The Adventurers
Your trip so far is awesome! Glad you missed the terrorism in Glasgow. Too bad about The Queen keeping you out of Balmoral - you could try Buck House when you get back to London?
Take care and keep the updates coming!
Love, Nanu

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