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Kickstart your Edinburgh city break with a lip-smacking brekkie at Edinburgh Larder (15 Blackfriars Street), a cosy hideaway tucked just off the Royal Mile. Roasted locally, the coffee here is guaranteed to leave you full of beans.
Afterwards, set off on a bracing stroll through Holyrood Park up to Arthur’s Seat, an extinct volcano 251 metres (823 foot) above sea level that offers sweeping views over the city. Completely free of charge, it’s a brilliant activity when you’re after a cheap weekend break in Edinburgh.
Swing past the Palace of Holyroodhouse, former home of Mary Queen of Scots, on your way back downhill, before taking a midday meander along the Royal Mile. Grab lunch at the Grain Store (30 Victoria Street), an atmospheric eatery serving up strictly Scottish produce, or keep your Edinburgh weekend cheap by picking up a haggis burrito.
Afterwards, duck into the Scotch Whisky Experience (354 Castlehill) for a cheeky tasting session before climbing the cobbles to Edinburgh Castle, fuelled by the firewater in your belly.
Add a touch of magic to your Edinburgh weekend break with dinner at The Witchery by the Castle (Castlehill, The Royal Mile). Hidden in the heart of the Old Town, this timeless venue serves top-notch Scottish cuisine in Gothic surroundings.
You can dance off the calories at Cabaret Voltaire (36-38 Blair Street), an atmospheric basement club under bare brick arches, before hitting the pillow and preparing to do it all over again.
Edinburgh’s Georgian New Town is a feat of urban planning with plenty to explore. Take an early stroll around Princes Street Gardens before grabbing a coffee at Leo’s Beanery (23/4 Howe Street), a soulful spot which uses only local supplies.
Next, swing past the Scottish National Portrait Gallery (1 Queen Street) before setting about some serious retail therapy in Jenners (48 Princes Street), Edinburgh’s oldest department store, and the upmarket boutiques of Multrees Walk.
Head for the Forth Floor Window Bar in Harvey Nichols (St Andrew Square) for top-class nibbles and killer views of Edinburgh.
Then, hop in a taxi over to Leith Harbour and spend the afternoon walking the decks of The Royal Yacht Britannia (Ocean Terminal), officially Scotland’s number one tourist attraction. Afterwards, weave in and out of the arty shops along the waterfront.
Start your evening with a pre-dinner pint in The King’s Wark (36 The Shore, Leith). Packed with history, this is a pub of many hats, serving as a plague hospital, a tollbooth and the honeymoon suite to James IV at different points during its history.
Next, treat your taste buds to a Michelin-starred meal at Restaurant Martin Wishart (54 The Shore) or The Kitchin (78 Commercial Quay). You can then top off your Edinburgh city break in style at The Bramble Bar (16A Queen Street), a little cocktail bar with a big heart.