Yesterday, we returned to Europe with our bucket list series, and today, we’re back in the UK with a bucket list destination to the capital of Scotland…Edinburgh! I’ve wanted to visit Scotland for a long time. Other than being an avid lover of architecture, I’m a huge golfer! Now, I’m not very good, but I love it enough to go out every single day if I could! That being said, St. Andrews is just over an hour from Edinburgh, and it’s widely regarded as the place that golf was born, and is home to arguably to most famous golf course in the world, St. Andrews Links. So rest assured that we will 1000% be visiting St. Andrews while on any vacation to Scotland, but first and foremost, let’s get into Edinburgh and go over the three things I absolutely must do while there!
First: The Edinburgh Castle.
This was a very easy choice. I love castles, and this is the most famous attraction in all of Scotland. What I didn’t know is how many cool things are inside, other than the beauty of the castle itself. According to planetware.com, some features of the castle include the Scottish National War memorial, the National War Museum, and the collection of Crown Jewels. Also on display is the 700+ year old Stone of Destiny, which was taken in the late 1200s by Edward I as a spoil of war, and was recently returned to Scotland in 1996. Even though it’s just a stone, I never cease to amaze myself with how much of a nerd I am when it comes to thinking about how much history that stone has been through1
Next: Arthur’s Seat.
Located at Holyrood Park, this is the highest point in the park and provides amazing views of the city! You can bet your behind that there will be many pictures taken from here! Part of my love for the UK and Ireland has been the shear beauty of the nature. Don’t get me wrong, I think nature is beautiful regardless of where you are, but I haven’t been to many places where I can just look at the hills and valleys and just be left speechless.
Last: The Royal Mile.
This was just as easy of a choice as the Edinburgh Castle. The Royal Mile is referred to as such because it’s a series of roads linking the Edinburgh Castle with the Palace of Holyroodhouse. I want to spend a lot of time in this area of the city because it’s home to several historical buildings like St. Giles Cathedral, the Scottish Parliament building, and the Heart of Midlothian (not a building, but still historically significant).
Now, let’s talk about some dishes I’d like to try while in Scotland! Before I dive into that, the first part of my “cuisine” section has to include the number of pubs on the Royal Mile! As I said yesterday, I’m a beer guy, so these pubs will be frequented while on our stay 🙂
- Known as the Scottish national dish, this is a must try while in Edinburgh. I will admit that this may not sound very appealing, but as a foodie, I’m very open to the possibility of anything tasting good if prepared correctly! The best description I can find of haggis is the organ meat from a sheep that’s minced with onion, oats for texture, and suet (a type of fat). It doesn’t sound appealing at all, but I know enough about the ingredients to know it seems like a winning combination, so I’d be ready for it! Rebecca and Griffin might have a little harder time, but I’m more open 🙂
- Black Pudding
- Now this I’m extremely excited about! I’d never had black pudding (for my American friends, blood sausage) until I went to Ireland, and I absolutely loved it. I had both black pudding and white pudding, but the black was definitely my favorite. I made sure to get three or four patties every time we went out somewhere for breakfast that had it.
- Somewhat of an adult dessert, there are several takes on this dish, but the recurring one I can find seems to be a mixture of whipped cream, honey, fresh raspberries, and whisky (there’s your “adult” part of the dessert). Then, it’s topped with toasted oats that have been soaked overnight in whisky. Like I said, there were several variations I found; chocolate, orange, hazelnut, etc…, but I like the original with the raspberries!
Well folks, I hope you enjoyed my bucket list post about Edinburgh! Please make sure to comment below if you’ve ever been and if there’s something our community should be sure to visit while we’re there!
Also, my first 10 bucket list posts have all been in foreign countries, but there are so many amazing places here in the U.S. that I’ve never been to, so next week, I’m going to have a 5 day series call “Bucket List USA,” where I go through the 5 places I want to visit the most in my home country. Have a great weekend everyone!