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A Scottish Sojurn – Best day trips from Edinburgh.

By Amitabh Das - September 9, 2020
Edinburgh Architecture

A charming combination of old and new, Edinburgh surely features as one of the best places to visit in the British Isles. The cobbled streets and century-old castles make the city truly unique and one of a kind experience. As the city is in the laps of Scottish highlands, there are plenty of best day trips from Edinburgh you can look forward to. Also, places like Isle of Skye and Loch ness are easily accessible as day trips from Edinburgh. Do read on as we bring to you a definitive list of places to visit near this fairy tale city.

Skyline of Edinburgh
Credits: Pixabay

Best day trips from Edinburgh.

  1. Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park.
  2. Check out the famous Stirling Castle.
  3. Visit the scenic St Andrews town.
  4. Indulge in mystery at the scenic Loch Ness.
  5. Visit the Wemyss Bay.
  6. Take a perfect day out at North Berwick.
  7. Visit the site of the famous Roslin Chapel.
  8. Get one with nature at Windermere.

1. Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park.

View of Lake Lomond
Credits: Pixabay

The largest lake in Great Britain, loch Lomond and the surrounding Trossachs National Park are some of the most scenic parts of Scottish highlands. There are plenty of outdoor activities like cycling, hiking, camping and nature walks that you can take once you arrive here. Also, if you are a wildlife enthusiast there are a variety of animals like red deer, red squirrel etc. in the national park area. For bird watchers, this place is a paradise as it has several endemic Scottish species like the peregrine falcon, golden eagle, buzzard, black grouse thriving around the loch.

2. Check out the famous Stirling Castle

Panoramic view of Stirling Castle
Credits: Pixabay

An architectural and natural wonder, Stirling castle is the most important and visited castle in Scotland. The unique location of the castle and the breathtaking views it surmounts will leave you awe-inspired. The castle was first built over time during 11th and 12th century and has played a prominent part as the royal residence of Scottish kings. The present structure was completed by Stewart kings during 1490 and 1600.

Ideal for a family day out, the castle can be easily accessed as day trips from Edinburgh. Do check out the Queen Anne gardens, Royal Chapel and regimental museum for a glimpse into history and arts. There are several on the spot and pre-booked guided tours available which you can take. The opening times of the castle is from 9.30 am to 6 pm.

3. Visit the scenic St Andrews town.

The St Andrews cathedral remains
Credits: Pixabay

A scenic seaside town located north of Edinburgh, you can visit this place for getting a taste of authentic Scottish architecture and some awesome wine and dine options. Ideal for a one day getaway from Edinburgh, this place offers a wide variety of activities to keep every one of your family occupied. You can check out St. Andrews Castle, cathedral and also the world oldest golf course. Interestingly, St Andrews is home to the oldest Scottish university with some neo-gothic architecture and history. This makes this trip popular among best day trips from Edinburgh.

4. Indulge in mystery at the scenic Loch Ness

Nessie the Loch ness monster
Credits: Pixabay

Famous for the cryptological Loch ness monster “Nessie”, this magnificent lake is deepest and one the most scenic in the highlands you can look forward too. A dreamy destination, its history which is sometimes considered myth but with some rare sightings and SONAR proofs! Intrigued! Make this a must-do among the best day trips from Edinburgh and go back to nature and mystery. Also, don’t forget to check the ruins of Urquhart Castle which is a must-visit.

View of Urquhart Castle in the backdrop of Loch Ness
Credits: Pixabay

Coupled with Loch Ness, you can also check out the Inverness city, which comes as part of combination shuttle tours. If you are taking a train, make sure you drop by Inverness in the late afternoon for a scenic view of the beautiful town. This region is famous for the world-famous scotch and famous Glens. They can be covered as a separate day trip focussed on distilleries and scenic glens.

5. Visit the Wemyss Bay.

Sunset at Wemyss Bay
Credits: Pixabay

A classic small town and gateway to Glassgow by a scenic train journey – Wemyss bay is an idyllic Scottish village. This is a trip in which you will get to experience the original village culture of Scottish Island. To combine a scenic element, prefer to take a regular steamer to Rothesay. The village by itself is quite small with some cosy cafes and nightcap B&Bs. Don’t miss checking out the famous Railway station building regarded as one of a kind in the British Isles.

6. Take a perfect day out at North Berwick.

View of beach at North Berwick
Credits: Pixabay

A scenic seaside upscale town, this is a perfect place among the best day trips from Edinburgh. The charming city centre and nearby hills surrounding rocky beaches are perfect to catch some scenic panoramas of Scottish highland. The meadows and farmland are really a sight to eyes as you catch the daily life and scenic natural beauty of Scotland. This place is just 32 km from Edinburgh city centre – thus ensuring a day well spent properly in the destination.

7. Visit the site of the famous Roslin Chapel.

Roslin chapel
Credits: Pixabay

Made popular by the book and movie, “The Da Vinci Code“, Roslin is a tranquil village 7 miles from Edinburgh. One of the most magnificent and striking Chapels in the world, the intricate carvings and form of gothic architecture is one of a kind. The church was recently renovated and restored, in 2013 after which this place has regained its original charm. You can look forward to visiting this with your families as you explore the small village also after checking out the chapel.

One more thing makes this city special and notable. In 1996, Dolly the first artificially clones somatic cell sheep took birth here. This centre of excellence biological and animal research “Roslin Institute” has moved to Easter Bush now, but has made the village world-renowned for its contribution towards genetics.

8. Get one with nature at Windermere.

Scenic view of Lake district in Windermere
Credits: Pixabay

Going to the Harry Potter movie trails in Edinburgh and along the scenic lake district, Windermere is a picture-perfect lake and small town. The lake and national park give you ample space to explore the wilderness and soak in pure nature. Popular with kids, you should definitely check out the “The World of Beatrix Potter Attraction“. Water cruising and leisure activity options are wildly available, with most people preferring a night stay before moving forward. If you are short of time visit this place among the best day trips from Edinburgh for a different experience.

A famous loch in Scotland
Credits: Pixabay

The city of Edinburgh is one of the bucket-list places to go for sure. Not only the famous castle, but the amalgamation of nature, history and architecture make this a uniquely Scottish experience. With lots of gastronomy, wine and dine and shopping options, places like Glasgow and Falkirk can be on your list too as day trips from Edinburgh. For planning a trip to Scotland along with the popular English capital London, visit our user customisable website Pickyourtrail.

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