Luckily, there are plenty of cheap, inexpensive and free things to do in Edinburgh. Unlike London, Edinburgh is more affordable and you can find cool things to do without breaking your pocketbook. Here are nine cool and unique Scottish things to do and see while in Edinburgh.
This is the heart of Edinburgh. With so many unique and historical sites, you can't help but experience the true essence of Scottish culture on this street. Start at the castle and slowly make way discovering each alleyway. Trust me, there's something to be explored in each one. So many people zip up and down and spend time at the tourist shops without actually exploring or reading the plaques on the wall about what once happened in that spot.
This tour brings you around all the coolest and creepiest sites around Edinburgh's Old Town. With ghoulish stories (while walking at night) the free ghost tour is certainly worth it. Our guide was an American drama student who's voice inflections made this trip even spookier. You'll learn about witch trials, ghostly sitings and discover what life was like back in the day without any plumbing or toilets. Look for announcements on the Royal Mile.
The tour is donation-based and PLEASE do NOT skip out on paying the tour guide. I saw some people leaving just before the last stop and found it very distasteful and disrespectful for someone's time. If you want anything for free in this world - buy a map and do it yourself - which is a sign that nothing is ever free. freeghosttours.com
Well, nothing is for free, but the Hairy Coo Tours offer a free Scottish Highland tours allowing guests to donate based on what they think is a fair price. Some tours charge up to 50-pounds and this free tour is valued at 37 pounds. With a free pickup to and from Edinburgh get ready to explore various lochs, castles and natural sceneries. Our guide Marty picked us up wearing his kilt and made us laugh the entire time with his Scottish humor and jokes.. The coolest part was feeding the hairy coo. I don't know if it was the sound of the engine or the sweet scent of White Wonder bread, but once we parked our van the coo's left the professional photographer's scene and fled toward us to eat several bags of bread. On and the unicorn goat and the William Wallace castle was pretty cool too.
But don't take this tour if you plan on spending five to ten pounds. You have to consider the guide's time and price for gas. I get annoyed when people cheat the system, which I saw several times on our trip. The point of these free things is to be affordable, not a cheapskate. thehairycoo.com
The Scots have a deep-roots in the literary world. Discover three of the most notable Scottish writers - Robert Burns, Sir Walter Scott and Robert Louis Stevenson - with author portraits, rare books, writing desks and other possessions. The museum is free but appreciates donations.
Nestled on the top of the hill, overlooking the New and Old Town, if there is one thing to do in Edinburgh you must visit the castle. A bit pricey, but not horrible, this is one place to spend money on the entrance fee. Entry fees are now 16.50 pounds, but the views, history, sites and free gift shop whiskey tasting pays off. There are not many places in the world where you can stand in the dining hall where a beheading execution took place over an argument. Isn't life (and history) crazy?
There are plenty of museums and sites such as the National Gallery, Royal Botanical Garden and St. Giles Cathedral that are free of entrance. Donations are appreciated, but not many places in the world offer such profound history all for the price of free. Old Town offers plenty of cool historical sites such as the Heart of Midlothian, a good place to spit, as this was once the administrative center of town, prison and a place of execution. Grab a map cause the options are endless.
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