Posted: October 2015
After a long day+ of travel I have finally arrived to Edinburgh!
Prior to my trip, I arranged to have a private driver pick me up from the airport so that I wouldn't have to worry about figuring out the public transit after the long trip - I don't sleep on planes so I knew I would be tired and not able to think clearly. I was greeted by a very nice gentleman who has been living in Edinburgh for over 9 years but originally came from Poland. He was full of helpful tips on how to drive in and around Edinburgh since I will be picking up my car in a few days.
The drive from the airport was only 20 minutes in the car. Along the way were typical industrial parks and airport-outskirt neighborhoods but as we got closer and closer to the city center in Old Town, the scenery drastically changed. Old cobbled narrow streets lined by medieval stone buildings. We came to Grassmarket where my hotel for the next few nights is located.
Unfortunately, I caught a cold on the plane and it started to hit me when I arrived to Scotland. So, once at the hotel I went to a small shop a few doors down and picked up some cold medicine and nursed my ailment with hot green tea and a delicious Scottish meal - Angus steak pie with potato mash and gravy. Ok, I don't know how much Angus steak pie helps with a cold, but it surely made my belly happy.
The Grassmarket area of Old Town is a lively part of Edinburgh. The street is lined with pubs, restaurants, convenient hotels and quirky shops. It is centrally located and easy to walk to any attraction. Public transportation is great in Edinburgh - you definitely do not need a car. Buses run frequently, tourist options are inexpensive and well scheduled, and the cabs are always available. But, walking is a great option to save a few pounds and to see the city up close. There are several colleges in Edinburgh, so the whole city is essentially a 'college town' but with a wider range of diversity since Edinburgh is the capitol city - it is a melting pot of college students, professionals, tourists, young families, industrial workers, and more.
I chose my dwelling for the next few days at Grassmarket Hotel. It sits on the corner of Grassmarket - just a few blocks away from several sights including the Greyfriar's Kirkyard. I was warmly greeted by the hotel staff. I booked a cozy twin room which was perfect just for me. The rooms are decorated with a charming vintage comic book theme (Dandy - a popular Scotish comic book series) with modern amenities. This room is so cozy in fact that I must now retire to a good night of sleep.