Edinburgh has so much to see and do, and most of it is within walking distance of Haystack Hostel. But
once you have seen all you want to see, it may be time to take a trip outside of the city, to the nearby
Jump on the train at Waverley Station, a 2 minute walk from Haystack Hostel, and 25 minutes later you will
find yourself in the beautiful medieval town of Linlithgow. There are lots of things to do here, from the Annet
House museum to a brewery visit. But the highlight and main reason for going is Linlithgow Palace. Birth
place of Mary Queen of Scots, the palace was one of the main residences of the monarchs of Scotland in
the 15th and 16th centuries and it is absolutely stunning!
Tip: For the real adventurous, you can cycle along the union canal from Edinburgh to Falkirk!
Cramond is one of our favourite off the beaten path locations around Edinburgh. Originally a Roman
settlement, it is now a charming little village right at the mouth of the river Almond. You can walk along the
river out to the Forth Estuary, where Roman coins and even a stone lion were found. Then, providing the
tide is out, you can take a walk out to Cramond Island. You can then have a quiet pint of beer and a meal
of fish and chips at the beautiful Cramond Inn pub.
WARNING: If walking to the island, please make sure you check the tide times and leave plenty of time to
get back before setting off!
Another town easily accessible from Waverly Station is North Berwick. This lies on the coast in East
Lothian and is about 35 minutes on the train from Edinburgh. It’s a great place to go to when you need a
break away from the city and the train journey itself takes in some stunning coast line.
North Berwick is probably most famous for its Bass Rock, a volcanic rock island that is home to a large
colony of gannets. The island is now uninhabited by humans however it hasn’t always been that way. An
important castle existed on the island, which was later used as a prison. Remains of the castle still exist
however some of the stone was reused to build the lighthouse.
The Auld Kirk Green at the harbour has an interesting but dark history, many people were accused of
witchcraft at the site and were subsequently tortured into confessing before being burnt at the stake in
North Berwick is also home to some nice restaurants to grab some lunch after all that walking. Try Zitos, for
some Italian Food, or one of its many chip shops for some traditional fish and chips.
A 45 minutes bus ride away from the city, Roslin is a village most well known for its chapel, Rosslyn
Featured in The Da Vinci Code, Rosslyn Chapel is a beautiful chapel dating back to 1446. Its architecture
is considered to be among the finest in Scotland. They say it is home to the Holy Grail. The chapel is open
daily and costs £9 to enter but is well worth it.
A few hundred metres away you will also find Rosslyn Castle which is partially in ruins, built in either the
late 14th or in early 15th century.
To get there, the number 37 bus (from Princes Street Stop PJ) to Roslin.
Want to see some of the famous Scottish scenery but don’t have the time to go all the way up to the
Highlands? Take a bus to the Pentland Hills for some breath-taking scenery. A favourite haunt for the cities
avid hikers, you can follow one of its many routes which will take in hills and a loch. You could also try a bit
of skiing, with Hillend, a dry ski slope, being located here too. But the real draw for many is the opportunity
to see Highland Cows which, depending on the time of year, can be found grazing the hills.
If you like the sound of any of these trips, or fancy something else a little different, let us know and we’d be
happy to point you in the right direction!