Amanda Thomas vlogger recently relocated from Auckland, New Zealand to Edinburgh, Scotland. As a fan of the romantic Scottish city, we ask her for her top tips for a weekend in the city.
Half of the mind behind of Here Comes the Sun, Amanda and husband Jeremy decided it was time for an adventure so they applied for visas, sold all their possessions, said goodbye to friends and family and packed their bags for a month of trekking around Europe. "We settled in Edinburgh mid January and despite the cold, fell in love with the city immediately!"
What I like most about Edinburgh and Scotland
Being from a city that's as young as Auckland is makes you really appreciate Edinburgh with all its old buildings and history. It's such a liveable city with most things being walking distance and the cost of living really reasonable. We fell into a life here really easily but are still learning new things about the city all the time and still finding new reasons to love it.
My favourite things to do in 48h.
This is something I'm actively working on perfecting as we have so many friends from abroad that visit us and it's so fun playing tour guide. Our current strategy for showing people around Edinburgh in a short amount of time is to start at the bottom of the Royal Mile and walk from the Queen's Palace up to the Castle, stopping for baked potatoes along the way. From there we go through the close down to Victoria street, along the Grassmarket and then up to Tom Riddle's grave and Greyfriar's Bobby.
After that it's probably time for a drink, so somewhere like Paradise Palms' is nice and central and they have amazing vegan options. Depending on the time of year, either a walk up Scot's Monument or a ride in the ferris wheel on Princes St is great for getting a birds eye view of Newtown.
Day two in the city is a bit of a mixture - if the weather is nice we always recommend walking up Arthur's Seat and/or the Crags and going for a good ole pub lunch at The Regent in Leith. Their food is tasty, the drinks are cheap and it's dog friendly so you have a high chance of getting to give pats. If you have time then a walk through Leith and/or Stockbridge is always great, especially if the markets are on.
My favourite foodie places.
I have so many places I love already and so many more on my list to visit. For cafes I love Caffeine Drip or Henderson's Deli, for pubs/bars I love the Brass Monkey, The Regent and Paradise Palms and recently I've been eating a lot at Ting Thai Caravan and Nova Pizza. Panda & Son's in Stockbridge is always fun to take people to as it's speakeasy style and the sign on the outside just says 'Haircuts 5p' but you go down the stairs to a huge underground bar with amazing drinks.
Being that we arrived here with no posessions other than clothing, I'm a sucker for homeware stores at the moment. I love Oliver Bonas and Anthropologie, but there are also some nice stores on Victoria st that sell local arts and crafts as well as vintage items.
What I'm excited about this Fall season
Well in New Zealand we don't really get the pumpkins that have the bright orange shell, so I'm quite excited to see them in stores and do my first pumpkin carving! We've also been talking about doing one of the ghost tours for the longest time, so with Halloween approaching maybe we'll finally get around to that. I'm actually excited for the change in season and to start doing some festive things like making mulled wine and buying new coats and scarves!
A special place in the city
We live in the north of Edinburgh and I absolutely love being so close to the waterfront. Going for runs and walks along the boardwalk is one of my favourite things and the view out across to Fife is beautiful, especially when the sun is setting. It's also really nice on a Saturday morning when everyone is out taking their dogs for a walk. All in all I love this city <3
All images are courtesy of Amanda.