Visiting Edinburgh for a couple of days and wondering what to do during your time there? I’ve been lucky enough to live just over an hour from Edinburgh my entire life. It’s always been an appealing place for a day trip or weekend getaway. I’ve visited the city dozens and dozens of times and thought it was time I shared a 2 night Edinburgh itinerary…

What to do… 

The Grassmarket

In the heart of Edinburgh’s Old Town is The Grassmarket, an ancient marketplace. These days it’s filled with colourful streets, architecture dating back to the 17th century, fun pubs and plenty of vibrancy. It’s the perfect place to sit outside in summer and indulge in some people watching.

Walk Arthur’s Seat 

2 night edinburgh itinerary, arthurs seat
Edinburgh is home to two extinct volcanos – the one that the castle sits atop and Arthur’s Seat. At a height of 250 metres it’s an easy walk/hike to the top and offers amazing views of the city and out towards the water at Leith.

National Museum of Scotland 

The National Museum of Scotland is a must on a visit to the city. It’s housed within a gorgeous contemporary building and is home to more than 12 million objects. Learn about the natural world, Scotland’s history, science, art, design and more.  The Museum is also absolutely free to visit.

Edinburgh Castle

2 night edinburgh itinerary, edinburgh castle
It wouldn’t be a trip to Edinburgh without a visit to the Castle. It’s the most iconic sight in the city and one that shouldn’t be missed. Learn all about the hundreds of years of history of the castle, the monarchy who used it and those who were imprisoned here.

You can also enjoy some incredible views out over the city and see the cannon being fired at 1pm each day.

Top tip: I recommend booking tickets in advance and collecting them when you arrive as the queue for tickets on the day can be very long. 

Camera Obscura 

If it’s pouring down with rain and you’re looking for a fun indoor activity then Camera Obscura definitely fits the bill. Located at the top of The Royal Mile it contains a ‘world of illusions’ that are really fun and interactive for both adults and children. It’s quirky, interesting and informative too.

The camera itself is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and dates back to Victorian times and is Edinburgh’s oldest visitor attraction. In a dark room a picture of Edinburgh is projected as if by magic!

Walk the Royal Mile

The Royal Mile runs from Edinburgh Castle all the way to Holyrood House and is full of attractions. Explore the closes dotted along the street that date back to medieval times (or get a full close experience in Mary Kings Close). Admire the architecture of St Giles Cathedral, visit the numerous whisky shops and take in the bustling atmosphere.

Admire the architecture 

2 night edinburgh itinerary
2 night edinburgh itinerary
If you’re a fan of architecture and gorgeous buildings you’ll absolutely love Edinburgh. From the ancient architecture of the Old Town to the Georgian, neo-classical and contemporary architecture of the New Town.

Where to stay…

Budget

As Edinburgh is a world-famous tourist destination there aren’t too many budget-friendly options. I recently discovered one though – Haymarket Hub Hotel. As the name suggests, it’s located right next to Haymarket Train Station, just a short walk from the main attractions of the city.

Rooms are compact but have absolutely everything you could need. One of the best features for foreign guests is that there are smartphones in each room that you can use for the duration of your stay. You can use them to make calls, send texts and browse the internet. They’re loaded with free data that allows you to use them whilst you’re out and about for maps, looking up attractions, booking tickets and more. Genius!

Room prices start from around £76 per night, making it a great budget option without having to compromise on quality and comfort.

Luxury

My absolute favourite hotel in Edinburgh is the luxurious Witchery by The Castle. It’s an opulent, romantic and wonderful experience staying here. There are 9 incredible suites each individually designed and decorated and located just a stone’s throw from Edinburgh Castle. It’s the type of place you visit and never want to leave and it’s hard to put into words how much of a treat it is.

With room prices starting at more than £300, it’s the type of place to book for a really special occasion. You won’t regret it!

What else would you recommend for a visit to Edinburgh? 

I was a guest at Haymarket Hub Hotel, however, the recommendation and opinions are entirely my own.