Free things to do in Edinburgh, Scotland

We asked our teachers and staff at Edinburgh Language Centre about the best things to do for free in Scotland’s capital city, and here are their top 10 recommendations:

Photo: View of Arthur's Seat from central Edinburgh © David Dixon

1. Discover the history of Scotland and its people at the National Museum of Scotland – look out for the interactive Millennium Clock Tower that plays at regular intervals throughout the day!
2. Climb up dormant volcano Arthur’s Seat for a beautiful panorama of chimney tops, green rolling hills and blue sea 

Photo: Portobello Promenade © Sandy Gemmill

3. Take the bus to Portobello beach and enjoy an ice cream along the promenade
4. On a sunny day take a picnic to the beautiful Botanic Gardens, or wander along the Water of Leith through the woodland to Dean Village, one of Edinburgh’s oldest villages

Photo: Street performer on the Royal Mile © Festival Fringe Society

5. Be mesmerised by the street performers on the Royal Mile and Princes Street during the Edinburgh Festival
6. Admire old and modern works of art in the National Portrait Gallery and the Scottish Gallery of Modern Art

Photo: Cramond © Adam Ward

7. Walk along the beach at Cramond, a small village that is easily accessible from central Edinburgh. At low tide you can cross the causeway to Cramond Island!
8. Play the oldest short-hole golf course in the world on Bruntsfield Links by the Meadows – you can bring your own gear or rent from the Golf Tavern from April to September

9. Climb up Calton Hill and wander between its many monuments – see what happens to the white ball at the top of Nelson’s Monument at 1pm when the daily gun goes off at Edinburgh Castle!
10. See £1 million at the Museum on the Mound, or head to the Museum of Edinburgh on the Royal Mile to see the original collar of Greyfriars Bobby, the city’s well-loved dog!

Would you like to learn English in Edinburgh? Click here to find out about Edinburgh Language Centre or contact us to find out more.

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