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Things to do in Edinburgh

A collection of ideas for things to do while you are in Edinburgh, with short local knowledge commentary from us at Edinburgh flats. Please note that the listing is only intended to provide ideas, not to be a comprehensive listing of all the possibilities. Edinburgh Flats cannot guarantee the accuracy or nature of information on the third party web links listed below.
For orientation about locations, all the distances noted are direct distances (“as the crow flies”) from Waverley station. Approximate walking times, or recommended means of travel, from Waverley station or the city centre are also noted for your planning and convenience.
As you will see, we enjoy exploring Edinburgh on foot, using public transport (buses and trains) when necessary.

City Art Centre, 2 Market Street, Edinburgh, EH1 1DE
Gallery with collection of Scottish Art. 100m south from Waverley station. 2 minutes’ walk.
www.edinburghmuseums.org.uk/Venues/City-Art-Centre.aspx


Dovecot Studios, 10 Infirmary Street, Edinburgh, EH1 1LT
Contemporary art gallery and tapestry studio with café. 600m south from Waverley station. 10 minutes’ walk.
https://dovecotstudios.com


Scottish National Gallery, The Mound, Edinburgh, EH2 2EL
Some of the best known pieces of world art. 200m west from Waverley station. 7 minutes’ walk.
https://www.nationalgalleries.org/visit/scottish-national-gallery


Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, 75 Belford Road, Edinburgh, EH4 3DR
Collection of modern and contemporary art. 2.4 km west from Waverley station. 35 minutes’ walk.
https://www.nationalgalleries.org/visit/scottish-national-gallery-modern-art


Scottish National Portrait Gallery, 1 Queen Street, Edinburgh, EH2 1JD
Portraits of the people who shaped Scotland’s history. 650m north from Waverley station. 10 minutes’ walk.
https://www.nationalgalleries.org/visit/scottish-national-portrait-gallery

Many gift shops sell ready-made kilts for would-be Bravehearts. For a better fit and lifelong investment, there is no substitute for a made-to-measure kilt. Various well-known suppliers with walk in service are listed below.

Celtic Craft Centre, Paisley Close, 101 High Street, Royal Mile, Edinburgh, EH1 1SP
265m southeast from Waverley station on the Royal Mile. 6 minutes’ walk.
https://www.yelp.com/biz/celtic-craft-centre-edinburgh


Geoffrey Tailor Tartan Weaving Mill and Exhibition, 555 Castlehill, Royal Mile, Edinburgh, EH1 2ND
520m southwest from Waverley station, on the Royal Mile beside the castle. 10 minutes’ walk.
www.royal-mile.com/interest/tartanweavingmill.html


Geoffrey Tailor, 59 High Street, Royal Mile, Edinburgh, EH1 1SR
320m southeast from Waverley station on the Royal Mile. 6 minutes’ walk.
https://geoffreykilts.co.uk/wp/


Hector Russell, 137-141 High Street, Royal Mile, Edinburgh, EH1 1SG
220m south from Waverley station on the Royal Mile. 5 minutes’ walk.
https://www.hector-russell.com


Kinloch Anderson, 4 Dock Street, Leith, Edinburgh, EH6 6EY
2.9 km north northeast from Waverley station, in Leith. Approx. 20 minutes using most Leith-bound buses from North Bridge or Princes St.
https://www.kinlochanderson.com


Nicolson Kiltmakers, 180 Canongate, The Royal Mile, Edinburgh, EH8 8BN
390m southeast from Waverley station on the Royal Mile. 6 minutes’ walk.
https://nicolsonkiltmakers.com


21st Century Kilts, 48 Thistle Street, Edinburgh, EH2 1EN
A more contemporary take on the kilt. 650m northwest from Waverley station in the New Town. 12 minutes’ walk.
www.21stcenturykilts.com

Cameo Picturehouse, 38 Home Street, Edinburgh, EH3 9LZ
Art house cinema in Tollcross. 1.4 km southwest from Waverley station. 22 minutes’ walk.
https://www.picturehouses.com/cinema/Cameo_Picturehouse


Filmhouse, 88 Lothian Road, Edinburgh, EH3 9BZ
Art house cinema in Tollcross. 1.2 km west southwest from Waverley station. 19 minutes’ walk.
https://www.filmhousecinema.com


Odeon, 118 Lothian Road, Edinburgh, EH3 8BQ
Cinema in Tollcross. 1.3 km west southwest from Waverley station. 19 minutes’ walk.
www.odeon.co.uk/cinemas/edinburgh_lothian_road/108/


VUE Omnicentre, Greenside Place, Leith Street, Edinburgh, EH1 3AU
Multi-screen modern cinema. 600m north northeast from Waverley station. 10 minutes’ walk.
https://www.myvue.com/cinema/edinburgh-omni-centre/whats-on

Queens Hall, 85-89 Clerk Street, Edinburgh, EH8 9JG
Varied programme, from chamber to folk and contemporary music. 1.3 km south from Waverley station. 19 minutes’ walk. Also various buses from North Bridge.
www.thequeenshall.net


Usher Hall, Lothian Road, Edinburgh, EH1 2EA
Historic concert hall with varied programme. 1.1 km west southwest from Waverley station. 19 minutes’ walk.
www.usherhall.co.uk

Royal Scottish Country Dance Society, 12 Coates Crescent, Edinburgh, EH3 7AF
Headquarters address only. See website or events pages for occasional dances.
https://www.rscds.org/Content.aspx


Traditional Arts and Culture Scotland, Scottish Storytelling Centre, 43-45 High Street, Royal Mile, Edinburgh, EH1 1SR
Organise various music, dance and storytelling events at the Scottish Storytelling Centre on the Royal Mile. Varied programme, all year round. 350m southeast from Waverley station. 6 minutes’ walk.
www.tracscotland.org

National Library of Scotland, George IV Bridge, Edinburgh, EH1 1EW
With over 26 million articles: books, documents, manuscripts, digital archives. 400m south southeast from Waverley station. 8 minutes’ walk.
www.nls.uk

A list of venues offering live music is on the website below, but please also refer to the “Classical and Contemporary Music” item above.
www.edinburghguide.com/venues/live-music

Anatomical Museum, University of Edinburgh, Doorway 3, Medical School, Teviot Place, Edinburgh, EH8 9AG
Specimens from pathology, anatomy and zoology; skeletal remains and fluid-preserved objects, forensics and artworks. 850m south from Waverley station. 16 minutes’ walk.
https://www.ed.ac.uk/visit/museums-galleries/anatomical


Cockburn Geological Museum, University of Edinburgh, Grant Institute, King’s Buildings, West Mains Road, Edinburgh, EH9 3JW
Minerals, rocks, fossils, maps and photographs plus archives of famous scientists. 3.3 km south from Waverley station. 42 Bus (direction King’s Road) or 67 Bus (direction Bush), 15 minutes from Princes Street to Rankin Drive, followed by 200m/2 min walk.
https://www.ed.ac.uk/geosciences/about/history/museuml̥


Dynamic Earth, 112 Holyrood Road, Edinburgh, EH8 8AS
4D adventure about the world’s nature and lifetime. 850 east southeast from Waverley station, near the Scottish Parliament building. 13 minutes’ walk.
http://www.dynamicearth.co.uk/visit/what-is-dynamic-earth


Museum of Childhood, 42 High Street, Edinburgh, EH1 1TG
Children, toys and games from the past. 350 southeast from Waverley station on the Royal Mile. 6 minutes’ walk.
www.edinburghmuseums.org.uk/Venues/Museum-of-Childhood


Museum of Edinburgh, 142-146 Canongate, Edinburgh, EH8 8DD
A maze of rooms and historic objects throughout this historic building. 700m east from Waverley station, on the Royal Mile approaching the Scottish Parliament building. 10 minutes’ walk.
www.edinburghmuseums.org.uk/Venues/Museum-of-Edinburgh.aspx


Museum on the Mound, The Mound, Edinburgh, EH1 1YZ
The story of Money – art & design; technology, crime, trade and security – located in the historic Bank of Scotland head office building. 300m southwest from Waverley station. 5 minutes’ walk.
https://museumonthemound.com


National Museum of Flight, East Fortune Airfield, East Lothian, EH39 5LF
Aircraft collection. 30 km east from Waverley station, near East Fortune. See website for how to get there: not straight-forward using public transport.
https://www.nms.ac.uk/national-museum-of-flight/


National War Museum, Edinburgh Castle, Edinburgh, EH1 2NG
The story of Scotland at war. 800m east southeast from Waverley station, in the castle. 14 minutes’ walk.
https://www.nms.ac.uk/national-war-museum/


National Museum of Scotland, Chambers Street, Edinburgh, EH1 1JF
The history of Scotland and the World: nature, art, design, fashion, science and technology – including the renowned Lewis chessmen. 500m south from Waverley station, near the University Old College. 13 minutes’ walk.
https://www.nms.ac.uk/national-museum-of-scotland


Natural History Museum, University of Edinburgh, Ashworth Laboratories, King’s Buildings, West Mains Road, Edinburgh, EH9 3JT
Collections built up by university researchers. 3.3 km south from Waverley station. 42 Bus (direction King’s Road) or 67 Bus (direction Bush, 15 minutes) from Princes Street to Rankin Drive, followed by 200m/2 min walk.
www.nhc.ed.ac.uk


People’s Story, 163 Canongate, Edinburgh, EH8 8BN
The story of Edinburgh’s ordinary people at work and play. 600m east from Waverley station, on the Royal Mile approaching Canongate Kirk. 9 minutes’ walk.
www.edinburghmuseums.org.uk/Venues/The-People-s-Story


Royal Scots Dragoon Guards Regimental Museum, The Castle, Edinburgh, EH1 2YT
300 years history of the only Scottish cavalry regiment of the regular British Army. 800m east southeast from Waverley station, in the castle. 14 minutes’ walk.
https://www.scotsdgmuseum.com


Music Museum, St. Cecilia’s Hall, University of Edinburgh, Niddry Street, Cowgate, Edinburgh, EH1 1NQ
Concert room and music museum of the University of Edinburgh. 400m southeast from Waverley station. 8 minutes’ walk.
www.stcecilias.ed.ac.uk


Surgeon’s Hall Museums, Nicolson Street, Edinburgh, EH8 9DW
Pathology, Surgery and Dental Collections. 650 south southeast from Waverley station. 12 minutes’ walk.
https://museum.rcsed.ac.uk


Trinity House Maritime Museum, 99 Kirkgate, Leith, EH6 6BJ
Martime treasures in a Georgian house, former headquarters of the Incorporation of Mariners and Shipmasters. 2.5 km northeast from Waverley station, in Leith. Various buses from Princes Street and North Bridge, direction Leith to Kirkgate centre (18 minutes), followed by 300m/3 min walk.
https://www.historicenvironment.scot/visit-a-place/places/trinity-house/


Writer’s Museum, Lawnmarket, Lady Stair’s Close, Edinburgh, EH1 2PA
The lives of 3 world-renowned Scottish writers: Robert Burns, Sir Walter Scott and Robert Louis Stevenson. 350m southwest from Waverley station. 8 minutes’ walk.
http://www.edinburghmuseums.org.uk/Venues/The-Writers–Museum

Scottish Storytelling Centre, 43-45 High Street, Edinburgh, EH1 1SR
Arts centre for traditional storytelling, music and dance. 350m southeast from Waverley station. 6 minutes’ walk.
www.tracscotland.org/scottish-storytelling-centre

Church Hill Theatre, 33 Morningside Road, Edinburgh, EH10 4DR
Mainly student, amateur and community productions. 2.5 km southwest from Waverley station. Various buses from Princes Street along Morningside Road to Church Hill (20 minutes), or 40 minutes’ walk.
www.assemblyroomsedinburgh.co.uk/church-hill-theatre/about


Edinburgh Playhouse, 18-22 Greenside Lane, Edinburgh, EH1 3AA
Mainly national touring productions of the Ambassador Theatre Group. 650m northeast from Waverley station. 11 minutes’ walk.
www.atgtickets.com/venues/edinburgh-playhouse/


Festival Theatre, 13/29 Nicolson Street, Edinburgh, EH8 9FT
Large theatre with varied programme, including Scottish Ballet and Scottish Opera. 650m south from Waverley station. 12 minutes’ walk.
www.edtheatres.com/festival


King’s Theatre, 2 Leven Street, Edinburgh, EH3 9LQ
Varied programme. 1.4 km southwest from Waverley station. 24 minutes’ walk.
www.edtheatres.com/kings


Royal Lyceum Theatre, 30b Grindlay Street, Edinburgh, EH3 9AX
Scottish theatre producing company. 1 km west southwest from Waverley station. 17 minutes’ walk.
https://lyceum.org.uk


Summerhall Arts Venue, 1 Summerhall, Edinburgh, EH9 1PL
Community performing arts centre and cultural village. 1.4 km south from Waverley station, near the Meadows. 20 minutes’ walk.
https://www.summerhall.co.uk


Traverse Theatre, 10 Cambridge Street, Edinburgh, EH1 2ED
A theatre for new writing productions. 1 km west southwest from Waverley station, near the Usher Hall and Royal Lyceum Theatre. 19 minutes’ walk.
https://www.traverse.co.uk

There are 3 universities in Edinburgh:

Edinburgh Napier University, Sightill Campus, Sighthill Court, Edinburgh, EH11 4BN
https://www.napier.ac.uk/


Heriot Watt University, Riccarton, Edinburgh, Scotland, EH14 4AS
https://www.hw.ac.uk


University of Edinburgh, Old College, South Bridge, Edinburgh, EH8 9YL
https://www.ed.ac.uk

Belhaven Brewery, Brewery Lane, Dunbar, EH42 1PE
Producer of Belhaven beer. 42 km east from Waverley station, in Dunbar. 24 minutes by train to Dunbar, followed by 1.8 km/20 min walk.
https://www.belhaven.co.uk

Caledonian Brewery Co Ltd, 42 Slateford Road, Edinburgh, EH11 1PH
Producer of Deuchars IPA. Unfortunately brewery tours currently not possible. 3.2 km southwest from Waverley station.
https://www.caledonianbeer.com/contact


Glenkinchie distillery, Pencaitland, Tranent, East Lothian, EH34 5ET
Producer of Glenkinchie Single Malt Whisky. 20 km east southeast from Waverley station, in Pencaitland. Shuttle bus service: see website.
https://www.malts.com/en-row/distilleries/glenkinchie/


Scotch Whisky Experience, 354 Castlehill, The Royal Mile, Edinburgh, EH1 2NE
Whisky tasting experience beside the castle. 500m southwest from Waverley station. 9 minutes’ walk.
https://www.scotchwhiskyexperience.co.uk