Scotland’s capital city, established in the 15th Century, is known for its stunning Georgian architecture, bucolic country surroundings, and lively festival atmosphere. In fact, 2022 is the 75th Anniversary of Edinburgh’s birth as a “Festival City,” with programming dedicated to science, jazz and art, including the world-renowned Edinburgh International Festival. The longest running arts festival in the world, it brings Edinburgh’s theatre venues to life with the very best music, theatre, opera and dance from around the globe.
Edinburgh Castle is the focal point of the city’s skyline, while Old Town and New Town delineate the cityscape. Together with the Forth Bridge, they are designated UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Edinburgh is also known as an important centre of education and research, especially in the fields of medicine, literature, philosophy, science and medicine. Because of its neoclassical architecture and intellectual prowess, Edinburgh is popularly referred to as the Athens of the North. The city itself is home to just over half a million people, however its many historical and cultural attractions attract 5 million visitors a year.
Here are the Fleurs de Villes recommendations for ways to enjoy all the city has to offer.
The Royal Botanic Gardens is a world-lead centre for horticulture and is home to one of the most vast collections of flora on Earth. Pioneering botanist Isobel Wylie Hutchinson, who is featured in the Fleurs de Villes FEMMES show in 2022, is a large part of this legacy, having bravely collected specimens from the arctic at the turn of the century. In addition to the gardens, Seeing the Invisible, an augmented reality show, runs through August 2022.
Beginning December 14, 2022 the Edinburgh Playhouse will run the Lincoln Center Theater’s critically acclaimed, multi-award-winning production of My Fair Lady, the much beloved story of flower-seller Eliza Doolittle’s transformation via elocution and etiquette lessons. This production has a 30-member cast and a full orchestra to accompany such classics as “Get Me to the Church on Time” and “I Could Dance All Night.”
St. James Quarter is Edinburgh’s chicest new retail and hospitality district comprising hotspot restaurants such as the pan-Asian Ka Pao, cocktail bar and restaurant The Alchemist and Hotel Chocolate ethical chocolatier, and luxury retailers such as H beauty and REISS. Much anticipated are the first Scottish locations of W Hotel with its rooftop sushi bar, and RoomZZZ, a boutique apart-hotel. It is also home to the Everyman Theatre, where moviegoers can have food and drinks delivered to their seats.
NOT TO MISS
The Royal Highland Show is an annual June event celebrating food, farming, and rural life in Scotland. The extensive showgrounds are home to an equestrian centre, so the main attraction is horse jumping competitions, demonstrations and entertainment. Scotland’s Larder is a culinary showcase and restaurant with local specialties and a culinary theatre that hosts cooking demonstrations.
A visit to Scotland would not be complete without a bagpipe performance. The world-famous Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo performs annually in August at the spectacular Edinburgh Castle Esplanade, and tours world-wide with its brigade of pipers, fiddlers and Highland dancers. Featured in this year’s Fleurs de Villes FEMMES show is Lance Bombardier Megan Beveridge, the first female soldier to be selected as the Lone Piper for the Military Tattoo.