What not to see in Edinburgh

Qué no hacer en Edimburgo

Edinburgh is much better if you know where to really go.

“What to see in Edinburgh” is probably one of the most frequently asked questions in our daily lives. Although we have several posts on the best things to visit in Edinburgh, every traveller is a world and many of you want to know where to take afternoon tea, vegetarian places to eat or some hidden gems where traditional tourists don’t arrive.

The truth is that not only do we love to answer your questions, but we also use those ideas as a source of inspiration for writing posts.

The other day I came up with an idea that will surely save you a lot of time, money and unnecessary walks around the city. This is the antipost about what to see in Edinburgh: here you’ll find things we don’t recommend when you visit this wonderful city.

Before getting to the point, I’d like to specify that my purpose is not to discredit or slander these places, but to explain to you why I would put them pretty low on the list of priorities when you organize your trip.

Obviously, if you’re on holiday in Edinburgh for a month, of course you can go and visit them and it won’t be a bad experience, but in general travelling time is a scarce and precious commodity.

What not to see in Edinburgh

Why not go to Edinburgh Zoo

Our travel ethic makes us incredibly respectful of the places we visit, and that includes your animals. Like so many other cities, Edinburgh has a zoo, but we have never visited it and it is not among our travel recommendations.

Besides its high price, we don’t think it’s a worthwhile attraction in the city, since zoos with enclosed animals can be seen anywhere in the world without being anything significant.

The Alternative of The Travel Blog:

If you really love animals and want to enjoy Scotland’s wildlife in its natural habitat, we recommend you visit the reindeer in Cairngorm National Park.

Ver renos en Escocia

Don’t go to the zoo, there are animals in many other places and without being locked up.

Not only will you see the native animals with their offspring in the wild, but you will be able to feed them with your hands and enjoy the wonderful landscape where they are. In addition, this unforgettable experience is much cheaper than the zoo, as well as respectful.

Why not go to the Edinburgh Botanical Garden

The botanical garden is recommended on many websites because it is one of Edinburgh’s free attractions.

Although I fully understand that low-budget travelers consider it a possibility, as it allows you to spend a couple of hours looking at strange plants and not spending a single pound, I do not agree with this recommendation.

Travelling lowcost is not just about doing things for free because they are free, but about doing them because they add value to your trip.

I am sure that in your home town or in many other parts of your country there is a botanical garden and you have not visited it: why waste a couple of hours seeing the one in Edinburgh? Just because it is free? Do you value your time so little?

Qué no hacer en Edimburgo - Subir a Arthur Seat

Climb Arthur Seat

If you’re not interested in botany and you couldn’t tell the difference between a maple and a maple on top, it doesn’t make much sense to spend an afternoon circling between taxonomies and species.

The Alternative of The Travel Blog:

If you like nature and have a small budget, my advice is to take a walk on any of Edinburgh’s seven hills.

Climbing Arthur Seat or doing one of the Pentlands trekking routes is free and there’s nothing like being in the wilderness of Scotland’s green.

Why not go to the Whisky Experience

Located in the heart of the Royal Mile, Whisky Experience is what I would categorize as a tourist trap.

The visit is carried out with an audio guide in all the languages that explains the elaboration and the storage, with the aid of visual effects. Once the visit is over, you are given a taste of whisky from the region of your choice and then you go on to visit the museum which has the most whisky bottles in the world.

The entrance fee is quite high (16 pounds for the basic tour) and frankly, the idea you get about Scotland’s national drink is quite poor.

Hacer un tour del whisky en Escocia

It’s a different journey

The Alternative to The Travel Blog

If you like whiskey, I’ll propose that you visit a real distillery. No visual effects or simulations: go to the heart of where this Scottish gold is fermented and distilled. There are many options outside Edinburgh, but if you don’t want to leave the city, we have two alternatives:

Holyrood Distillery, which is in the city centre, less than fifteen minutes from the Royal Mile and whose tour costs only £8.
Clydeside Distillery, Glasgow. You can arrive by train, just 40 minutes from Edinburgh… and take the opportunity to visit other attractions in Glasgow.

And if Whisky freaks you out, then you have to do the Free Route to try Whisky in Edinburgh that we’ll give you shortly in The Travel Blog.

Why not go to Portobello Beach

It seems that in El Blog de Viajes we always disagree with the rest of websites for tourists, but of course, we like to offer you only the best. Portobello is a district of Edinburgh where there is also the beach with the same name. Many websites recommend visiting it, but our opinion is contrary.

Due to its mild summer climate, Edinburgh is a city that lives with its back to the sea. We do not enjoy enough hours of sunshine and high temperatures for locals to dare to go to the beach as happens in other cities. It’s a shame, but both the neighborhood and the beach are not on our list of priorities to recommend to travelers.

The Alternative of The Travel Blog:

If you want to see the sea during your visit to Edinburgh, I suggest you go for the Cramond Island walk at low tide.

Crossing to an island that is isolated most of the time, thanks to the flow of the tides, is something quite peculiar.

Qué no hacer en Edimburgo - Cruzar a Cramond Island

Cross to Cramond Island

Another highly recommended option is to visit Leith and the New Haven Lighthouse. And if you still want more, then I recommend one and a thousand times that you approach the beautiful town of North Berwick, just 30 minutes by train.

Dear travelers, thank you as always for reading this post. Remember what I told you at the beginning: this entry is an attempt to help you prioritize your time in Edinburgh.

It’s not about throwing down the beautiful city where we live, far from it, we who enjoy this city since 2013 have gone several times to the botanical garden, the neighborhood of Portobello … and enjoy it in our own way.

However, if you come with an agenda full of things to do, I’m sure you’ll enjoy much more the alternatives we’ve proposed that will help make your Edinburgh travel experience unforgettable.