Things To Do in Edinburgh: Hidden Gems

Edinburgh is a beautiful city, we know this, and no doubt if you’re visiting for the first time you’ll be paying attention to some of its most famous haunts. However, Edinburgh has some hidden gems that you may not know about, and we’re going to be talking about that today. Want to find out something different about this enchanting Scottish city? Well, read on and allow us to surprise you!

Thomas Riddell’s Grave

Let’s start with something truly magical and mysterious in keeping with Edinburgh’s medieval and Georgian past. After all this city must be full of ghosts and hidden mystery. Head towards the grave of Thomas Riddell and this should satiate your appetite for magic and mystery. Does the name sound familiar? Well, it’s rumoured to have inspired the creation of Lord Voldemort for the Harry Potter series of books. The name was spelt differently, but as she wrote her first Potter book not far from the Greyfriars Kirkyard where Thomas Riddell is buried it does make you wonder……

Meat Market Arch

This was opened well over 100 years ago and now only the entrance is left of the original busy Edinburgh Meat Market. The arch has been beautifully restored and looks identical to how it would have looked back in the 19th century.

Kyoto Friendship Garden

This gorgeous garden can be found at Lauriston Castle in Cramond. A Japanese Kyoto Friendship Garden that opened 16 years ago. Because Edinburgh is twinned with Kyoto it makes sense that this garden would be smack bang in the city. It’s calming blossom trees and relaxing water features give you the zen you’re looking for.

The Wild West

Yes, the wild west here in Scotland. If you sneak behind the Morningside Library, you’ll find a piece of the wild west and it’ll feel like you’ve stepped into and episode of Westworld. There’s even a jail and a cantina. Why? Well, it was built for an advertising campaign and here it still stands. Just let your imagination run wild.

2 Wellington Place, Leith

So it’s a dark and dirty door, which is quite apt really when you think that it is here that Irvine Welsh wrote Trainspotting at this very house. To be more precise, it was on the top floor flat where it all happened.

Escape Edinburgh

Once you’ve visited Edinburgh’s hidden gems you may be ready to visit somewhere where you can relax and have fun with friends. We’d naturally suggest that you visit us here at Escape Edinburgh where you’ll be locked in a themed room of your choice and left to find your way out within the hour. To do that you’ll need to find a series of carefully hidden clues and puzzles. Can you do it? Why not book your room today and find out!

Things to do in Edinburgh: History Fanatics

Today we’re looking at some of the most famous and well-loved historical places in Edinburgh for those who love history. So, if you’re a history fanatic you’ve come to the right place. We’ve created a small list of our favourites, so you can visit them at your leisure, and get yourself a potted history of this beautiful Scottish city.

Firstly, we’re going to begin with:

Real Mary Kings Close

It’s buried underground, under Edinburgh’s Royal Mile, and comprises of a warren of streets that are unseen to those above and have been here since the 17th century. They were once busy streets full of people and tradesmen – the mystery is how it came to be this way, so far beneath the ground. You’ll have a tour guide that explains everything and there’ll be some wonderful stories to remember.

John Knox House

This 15th century house is full of traps and tricks that have been built into the house, so there’s plenty to fascinate in this seemingly ordinary historical building. It was at the centre of the Scottish Reformation that saw the abdication of that most famous queen, Mary, Queen of Scots. When the house was excavated time-capsules were found in the walls among other things, and although John Knox lived in the house, it was only for a short time. James Mosman also lived here, he was a goldsmith to the queen (Mary) and lived here for a short period between the mid-16th century to around the late 16th century when he was executed. What happened to James Mosman and what else is hidden in the house?

Edinburgh Castle

The most famous of all castles, Edinburgh Castle is a beautiful, majestic and imaginatively built royal residence that is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Within the walls are the crown jewels and you can see them when you visit. What you may not know is that the castle is still active as a military base and is known as the “defender of the nation.” It’s also home to the world famous annual Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo held here every August.

St Marys Cathedral

This certainly is one of the most enigmatic cathedrals. It was designed by a George Gilbert Scott and is the biggest ecclesiastic building in Scotland. As it’s an episcopal church it comes with a Bishop, and as well as being of historical interest it’s also a present-day place of worship. Inside you’ll find The Presence, a beautiful painting, The Paolozzi Window and The Rood Cross.

Scott Monument

This monument was dedicated the Sir Walter Scott the famous author, and is also the largest monument that’s been dedicated to a writer. It can be seen rising up far up into the sky with it’s striking Gothic Victorian spire. It’s at least 200ft tall and has nearly 300 steps which lead to its summit. If you decide to climb to the top, not only are you brave, you’ll be exposed to some of the most amazing views of Edinburgh while you’re up there. Stay at the bottom and you’ll have the sculpture of Sir Walter Scott himself to keep you company and you can bask in the shade enjoying what view there is from the safety of the ground.

Escape Edinburgh

After you’ve enjoyed a full day of historical exploration why not visit us here at Escape Games Edinburgh where you and family or friends can indulge yourselves in some fun, locked in a themed room with only an hour to escape. Question is - will you make it in time? See you there!