Edinburgh - Scotland, UK
On the 24th of June Ben and I caught a flight to Edinburgh, I say caught a flight like it was spontaneous but it really wasn't, I'd had it planned for over 2 months as a birthday present for Ben's 27th... He'd been saying he'd wanted to go for agessss so thought what a better treat? I mean, he didn't really need another pair of trainers haha! We arrived and d the temperature was a little lower than expected but jumped into a cab to our hotel in Leith, it was a part of the Malmaison group, Our rooms was lovely, the bed was sooo comfortable and the hotel it'self was clean and well kept in an old castle type building, we couldn't ask for more! It was situated along a gorgeous little canal and we were a walk away from little pubs and shops and the bus stop which we used continuously over the weekend. We put our cases in the room and decided to head out. After having had a few recommendations from the taxi driver, our first stop was
-'Mimi's Bakehouse', it was right next to the bus stop so couldn't not really; and i must admit it was a bloody delightful red velvet! We then hopped onto a bus into the city center, aiming for the castle and stumbled across ...
- The Scotch Whisky Experience I genuinely recommend this to anyone that visits Edinburgh, personally I am not a fan of whiskey however Ben really wants to get into it (we are a tad obsessed with House of Cards atm) but it was so interesting, it starts with a mini ride telling you how whisky is made and then we were taken into a room and shown a map of where the different whisky flavours were made and why they tasted the way the did and were given the chance to chose one which we liked the smell of from a sniff and scratch card. Ben opted for the whole tasting experience so once the tour was over and wed had the chance to try and learnt pretty much everything to do with Whiskey we then went into their bar which consisted of over 3000 different whiskeys or something ridiculous like that and Ben got to try 6 from all different parts of Scotland, best way to start a weekend me thinks! ha ha ha.
Next off we headed to the Castle, it was half a minute walk away and we were so glad we went, since it being one of the biggest tourist attractions and pretty much the only thing to go and see in Edinburgh! The architecture was absolutely stunning and from all balconies etc there were the most amazing views. There was so much history within the walls and written on the walls! Each room or coridoor you found yourself in had some sort on annotation to what might have happened there, it has been wonderfully created to fill you with knowledge. If you want to top up your history skills, get to Edinburgh castle asap, it's wonderful!
Once we had wondered around a bit we then decided to head back to the hotel but not without seeing the Bobbi the loyal dog statue, I didn't really know much about this but it was on the 'things to do in Edinburgh' list so thought why not, but we were expecting a massive monument, however what we found was quite literally a life size statue of Bobbi himself, very cute!!! (I'd like to think my dogs were that loyal!)
That evening we ate at The Kitchin by Tom Kitchin, there is nothing more to say then it was absolutely exceptional and our waiter Matteo couldn't do more for us. The dinner is a 3 course set menu of £85 per person. Everything on the menu is sourced in Scotland and when we sat down we were given a map of where everything had come from, it was such a nice touch and a lovely little souvenir that I brought home with me. I ordered the Shellfish & Crab Shellfish cannelloni served with crab, peas and a Newhaven green crab bisque to start, followed by the Lobster, which is a supplement extra by oh so worth it! Now, I've had lobster sitting next to the ocean in the Maldives but no word of a lie, this was probably the best lobster I have ever tasted and pretty much the whole lobster aswell because some places only give you half and then the shell for decoration!!! Then for desert I had the Millefeuille of Blacketyside strawberries served with clotted cream and basil ice cream, I love an eton mess and this was basically the same haha but the presentation was far from a mess, infact, almost too pretty to eat! ha. It wasn't an Eaton mess though or pavlova, whatever you wanna call it but it was scrumptious mmmmm, it's making my mouth water remembering it! Washing all of that down with a Blooming Flower cocktail. Ben and I have both said it is quite possibly one of the best restaurants we have ever eaten at and then to top off the whole perfect experience, our waiter found out it was Ben's birthday celebrations and bought him a little happy birthday desert plate and honestly just ended the night the best way possible!
We then carried on our night to a cocktail bar that our bartender recommended at the whiskey tasting called Hoot the Redeemer , we loved the sound of this and it was exactly as described, it's literally like walking into a circus themed room, to enter you go through a door disguised as a fortune teller and you walk into a cosy room full of sofas and tables and a grab machine where you can chose flavours, take it to the bar and they make you a quirky cocktail including those flavours, it's pretty cool. Ask for popcorn and you get a spicy surprise, unbelievably addictive! Ben's cocktail had a light in the bottom that changed colour, i was pretty envious but after a day of adventure, we decided to call it a night after 1 drink and head back for a good nights sleep.
The next day we woke up and went for probably the biggest breakfast I've ever attempted to eat in the hotel restaurant and we were honestly lost on what to do for the day so Ben decided to get the old trip adviser out and the boy dragged me up a volcano, no joke, it took us about an hour and a half up and around 2 hours down, if you don't call that pure love then I don't know what it because i seriously doubt any other person in the world will get me up a mountain! ahaha so nearly 2 hours later and hell of alot of moaning (and bonding) we finally got up to the top of Arthur's Seat , and it really was the most breath taking view and I am so glad we did it, unbelievable experience to share with my best friend!
after all the fun and games of climbing mount Everest and ruining our very inappropriate mountain climbing trainers we headed back to the hotel to grab our bags before departing for the air port. We found a bus route that took us straight to their from the city center so we got our stuff together and headed back into town where we found a little outdoor seating area squared off with a little bar and a couple of food stalls and bagged ourselves a free burger each and a glass of wine and a pint with a live singer and band to end our little holiday off perfectly! I couldn't be happier with our Edinburgh experience, it was more than perfect and I think we saw the best of it!!