Welcome back to the fabulous Edinburgh International Festival, where the best part of the month of August (5 – 29th August 2022) is a sweeping feast of vibrant sights and sounds mixed with appetizing tastes and smells everywhere in the city, across the ancient cobbled streets, the narrow closes and the quirky nooks and crannies. A cocktail of artists, street performers, comedians, musicians, visitors, locals and of course the city’s extraordinary hospitality & festival venues together with all the other local businesses will play their part to ensure the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and Edinburgh International Festival remain the famed and magical spectacle they’ve been known for over the past 75 years. This year is super special as the event celebrates three-quarters of a century of enchanting entertainment – unrivalled anywhere else on the planet!
We know you want to concentrate on all the extraordinary shows, plays. music and street action, hence we’ve taken the legwork out of figuring out where to stop for a bite, coffee or dram. Here’s your own …
Mini Guide to the Best Pitstops and Watering Holes in the City.
Should you want to take a break from the maddening crowd, clear your head after multiple action-packed days of theatre, music and crowds and make the most of the spectacular summery Scottish outdoors, we’ve got you covered on that score too!
That’s why we’ve added some Outdoors Adventures to your Mini Guide too.
From canoeing trips to walking and cycling tours, these are your outdoors-bound memories waiting to be realized!
But first things first, wake up to a fabulous cup of …
COFFEE & TEA
57 Broughton St, Edinburgh EH1 3RJ
Arguably the best coffee in town! Artisan Roast are Scottish speciality micro-roasters (since 2007) doing what they do best: roasting unique, delicious coffee daily in a friendly, casual cafe.
ETEAKET TEA ROOM
1 Frederick St, Edinburgh EH2 1EP
Are you a tea connoisseur? For the highest quality selection of unique, ethically sourced and innovative loose leaf teas in Scotland, pop into this delightful café in Edinburgh’s New Town.
FOOD OFFERINGS ON THE HOOF
THE ARTISAN PASTA MAKER
138 Dundas St, Edinburgh EH3 5DQ
For stunning artisanal pastas and exquisite dishes, visit this store in the heart of the city and stock up for after-show meals!
6 Bakers Place, Stockbridge, Edinburgh EH3 6SY
An Edinburgh institution for fine artisan and farmhouse cheeses, quince jelly, best oatcakes, fresh eggs and chutney. And very good baguettes too!
90 Brunswick St, Edinburgh EH7 5HU
This bakery’s slow-fermented sourdough loaves are legendary. They use no additives or improvers, only seasonal and organic ingredients. Their jams, custards, pie fillings and ricotta are made daily in the bakery.
CROMBIES OF EDINBURGH
97 Broughton St, Edinburgh EH1 3RZ
The undisputed kings of the sausage (over 40 types of sausages!) since 1955, Crombies also offers a huge selection of deli items like excellent haggis, delectable pies and other take-away options.
32B Broughton St, Edinburgh EH1 3SB
Visit this humble little diner with its ornate furnishings on trendy Broughton street, serving Punjabi Indian-inspired cuisine since 1983.
38 Easter Rd, Edinburgh EH7 5RG
This busy little café serves traditional rustic Italian home-cooking and excellent Italian sandwiches to an appreciative breakfast and lunchtime crowd. Definitely worth the short excursion from the city centre.
32C Broughton St, Edinburgh EH1 3SB
Glorious pizzas for delivery as well as many vegetarian and vegan options!
SIT-DOWN STOPS WITH A VIEW
THE LOOKOUT BY THE GARDENER’S COTTAGE
Carlton Hill, Edinburgh EH7 5AA
With arguable one of the best views across the city from the top of Carlton Hill, The Lookout by the Gardener’s Cottage writes a new menu every day based on the freshest ingredients they can lay their hands on.
HARVEY NICHOLS BRASSERIE AND BAR
30-34 St Andrew Square, Edinburgh EH2 2AD
Shop till you drop below, then reward yourself! Harvey Nichols boasts a refined Scottish brasserie offering views over the Firth of Forth. Great service, fabulous food and cocktails and the best views in town. There’s an excellent food and wine shop beside the brasserie, should you want to stock up.
14 George St, Edinburgh EH2 2PF
An excursion to this Edinburgh institution is a must. Dress up, enjoy festive cocktails, champagne and delicious food offerings in the opulent setting of this famous restaurant.
56 Broughton St, Edinburgh EH1 3SA
For a good night out with guaranteed brilliant food offerings and a view over buzzy Broughton Street, look no further than this upbeat French bistro with its white walls, retro posters and classic French menu. The owners pride themselves on using local produce and their ingredients come fresh from the restaurant’s own allotment.
110 Hanover St, Edinburgh EH2 1DR
If you’re after super delicious traditional British cuisine in a quaint Georgian setting in the heart of Edinburgh’s New Town, get yourself to this quirky venue where owner David Ramsden (and his dogs) will give you the quintessential Edinburgh food experience.
THE BAILEY BAR
2-4 St Stephen St, Stockbridge, Edinburgh EH3 5AL
In the middle of all the action and sitting pretty on a quaint corner of Stockbridge you’ll find this old-school, atmospheric basement pub with traditional decor, real ale, classic pub menu and live folk sessions. Come down and meet the locals!
81-85 Broughton Street, Edinburgh EH1 3RJ
An Edinburgh institution without rival is art-deco-inspired The Barony Bar with its Victorian charm, gleaming mahogany taproom, brewery mirrors, high ceilings, open fires and 19th century tiles. It’s the locals’ favourite for nips and drams, real ale or a glass of wine.
39 Jamaica St, Edinburgh EH3 6HF
A hidden gem just off grand India Street is this quaint locals’ choice of pub. A favourite with the rugby fraternity, Kay’s Bar is a cosy Victorian establishment with wooden barrel decor and a vast variety of draught beers and simple, excellent lunches.
TO MARKET, TO MARKET …
Saunders St, Stockbridge, Edinburgh EH3 6TQ
Since 2011 this lovely community market has been trading on Sundays under the trees in Stockbridge. It’s foodie heaven and hosts the best street food in Edinburgh. Wander down on a Sunday morning, meet the locals and buy brunch.
And if you’re still at a loss as to where to make a Pitstop, here are a few more Recommendations for your your Brekkie, Lunch and Tea (errr…. Dinner of course!)
THE GREAT OUTDOORS
Clear your head, leave the crowds behind and head for the hills! Or simply discover parts of town beyond the festival venues.
HETTY’S HISTORIC WALKS
Walk through the nooks and crannies of the Old Town, visit the opulent Georgian New Town and much more with a knowledgeable expert at your side.
EDINBURGH BIKE TOURS
In the mood for a two-wheeled adventure? Look no further, experience the city and beyond with the friendly folk at Edinburgh Bike Tours.
BRIDGE 8 HUB AND PADDLE CAFE
Calder Crescent, Edinburgh, EH11 4NE
Get a different perspective on things and see Edinburgh from the vantage point of its numerous panoramic canals and waterways!
ROYAL BOTANIC GARDEN EDINBURGH
Arboretum Pl, Edinburgh EH3 5NZ
Step into the peaceful haven of the Royal Botanic Garden, a lovely 15 minute walk from the city centre’s hustle and bustle. Relax on the lawns, savour all the beauty of the different sections of this magnificent garden and enjoy a delicious meal in one of the restaurants.
OTHER MAGICAL SECRET SPOTS TO DISCOVER ON FOOT …
THE DEAN VILLAGE AND DEAN PATH
A stunning riverside walk to a historic village
THE WATER OF LEITH
A delightful walk along the river
A beautiful country house museum and park
A massive ruined medieval fortress overlooking the city
A bustling city centre village filled with little shops and eateries
An ancient barony filled with contemporary culture!
DUDDINGSTON LOCH AND VILLAGE
Visit the famous Sheep’s Heid in Duddingston!
MARY KING’S CLOSE AND THE OLD TOWN
Subterranean remains of the old High Street underneath the town hall
Meet the Queen!
THE EDINBURGH NEW TOWN
FOR THESE BEAUTY SPOTS YOU’LL NEED TRANSPORT …
CRAMOND AND THE COAST
See the remains of a Roman Fort
Get up close and personal with the iconic landmark Forth Rail Bridge
Experience a splendid medieval castle in a delightful garden village
A spectacular clifftop refuge
A quaint and traditional Scottish town
A vast, unspoilt sandy beach, often totally private
NORTH BERWICK SEABIRD CENTRE
A bird sanctuary in a delightful seaside town