How to Spend 2 Days in Edinburgh
Two days in Edinburgh allow you time to thoroughly soak up the city’s atmosphere and most famous sights—such as Edinburgh Castle and the Old and New Towns—while also delving deeper into its fascinating and turbulent history. Here’s how to spend 48 hours in the Scottish capital.
Day 1: Explore the Old Town and Castle
**Morning:**Get your bearings while checking off some of Edinburgh’s major sights around the medieval Old Town with a private or group walking tour. A private half-day tour by car lets you see even more in a shorter time, or, for more flexibility, you can create your own itinerary with a hop-on hop-off bus tour.
**Afternoon:**Perched atop an extinct volcano, Edinburgh Castle dominates the city’s skyline and is home to Scotland’s Crown Jewels. Take a closer look at the city’s most important landmark by exploring the castle on a private or group tour, or independently with advance-purchased skip-the-line tickets.
**Night:**Delve deeper into the history of the Old Town on an evening tour that introduces you to colorful stories about Edinburgh’s dark past. Some tours take visitors into the eerie Blair Street Underground Vaults then to a pub for a dram of whisky; others go farther through the underground vaults and into Greyfriars Kirkyard. Afterward, you can lighten the mood by embarking on a pub crawl.
Day 2: Combine Innovation and Tradition
**Morning:**Avoid the long lines at one of Edinburgh’s most popular attractions by booking skip-the-line entrance to the Camera Obscura and World of Illusions. Enjoy hands-on exhibits and marvel at the original, Victorian-made virtual reality, which was created 150 years ago.
**Afternoon:**Now that you have thoroughly explored the Old Town, experience the contrasting architecture of the elegant New Town—together, they are a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Walking tours take you to top attractions such as Princes Street and the Scottish National Portrait Gallery while your guide tells related tales of secret Edinburgh societies and inventions of the Enlightenment period.
**Night:**Conclude your visit to the capital with a traditional Scottish evening. Joining a storytelling supper gives you a rich taste of the country’s heritage and culture as you listen to folk tales recounted by a skilled and entertaining storyteller while enjoying whisky, haggis, and traditional cranachan dessert.