Christmas in Edinburgh

When I left you last time it was the morning after our Christmas night out at the magnificent Macdonald Pittodrie House in the Scottish countryside ….

…The day after the party, we woke up with a slight hangover and in a rush. We had only 40′ left to have breakfast and prepare for checkout. My boyfriend -who had slept only for a couple of hours decided to snooze a couple of minutes more while I rushed to the breakfast bar. Ducking in and out the corridors (have I mentioned that we slept in the turret part of the castle?), I finally found the sunroom downstairs where the breakfast was held, grabbed myself a seat and ordered the vegetarian version of a full English breakfast, just what the doctor ordered!

Semi ready and with our stomachs full we opted for a walk in the woods with Cruz and my boyfriend’s parents. I love the countryside surrounding the Macdonald Pittodrie House. Every time we walk up Bennachie we always make a point of getting down here for a pint of the local beer so we were quite familiar with the site and happy to be back after a long time.

Cruzy seemed to be enjoying himself too!

A couple of hours and a train ride later, we found ourselves in Edinburgh marvelling at the architecture and busy festive streets.

‘Let’s go at Ecco Vino‘ he said. This is where we spent one of our very first rendezvous (also, hello baby me in a bob cut!) and every time we get back I am reminded of that time in Edinburgh. Funnily enough, it was around Christmas too!

What followed was a veritable feast of mulled wine and delicious food all by the window and whilst enjoying the best of views of Cockburn Street, one of the prettiest and busiest streets of the city.

A large supper meant we were in dire need of a walk and with the Christmas Market being just a breath way we decided to stroll around despite still carrying our luggage on our shoulders.

Edinburgh was wearing its prettiest, festive hat to welcome us and as the sun was setting down we show the most beautiful golden reflections on the castle.

All of Edinburgh had the same idea and the market was getting busier and busier by the minute.

The Edinburgh Market might be in the city centre of Edinburgh but when it happens it transforms the entire city. The use of cheery wooden facades everywhere you turn in the market makes the whole place seem even more dreamlike and Christmassy.

Visiting the Edinburgh Christmas market each year is high on my list of Life’s Greatest Joys. It’s up there, on top of the list along with eating Panettone for breakfast on Christmas Eve, lying down on crispy clean bedsheets, and the thrill I get down my spine when it snows and every tree in Scotland is covered in fluffy, thick snowflakes.

Spreading across the entirety of the Princes Gardens. Most of the visitors were Scottish with the exception of a few tourists who, much like myself, were armed with cameras and bags stocking up on souvenirs and Christmas decoration

And, of course, I had loads of mulled wine and churros with warm, melted chocolate on top that made my heart sing!

The next morning – well-rested and excited to wake up to this gorgeous Scottish city -we were eager to explore as much as possible and my plans were to go as far away as Calton Hill but, as you will see, nothing goes according to plan!

I took some pictures of the Christmas decorations as we walked past the Old College…

..on our way to the castle via the stunning West Bow with its colourful shop facades.

We came across so many cashmere and tweed selling shops along our way I almost forgot bought two cashmere scarves, talking about being easily influenced!

KIltane of Scotland is definitely one of the winner shops when it comes to buying cashmere in Edinburgh but you can’t beat a visit to the Barbour store when in search of waxed raincoats and woollen jumpers! We had a bit too much fun playing around the red telephone box set up to celebrate Christmas in-store and trying on the latest collection.

Next up was a walk through George Street, one of the prettiest streets if you ask me for a spot of shopping and Christmas decorations watching to get you in the festive mood.

Because is there any more grandiose than The Dome Christmas decorations?!

Flustered from all the walking / shopping we found shelter at the Cafe Royal for some refreshments.

And it seemed that gin was a good idea!

I got my favourite rhubarb and ginger Edinburgh gin with some Indian Tonic water and had the best time slowly sipping it while making plans with the Mr about our Christmas holidays.

Before it got ridiculously late, we hopped in a taxi and went for dinner at the Blonde restaurant, an absolute must if you are in town. We keep coming here again and again as they know as pretty well and we love how tasty, well presented and fresh the food is!

We shared the vegetarian meatballs for a starter before diving into our main dishes…

Seabream for me on a mountain of crushed potatoes with a red spicy sauce -DELISH!

and a nicely cooked juicy steak for him with a side of French fries.

Now, when it comes to desserts you’ll find me always saying ‘no’ but when the creme brulee arrived on the table I couldn’t get my spoon down. Rich with a thin crust of caramelised sugar on top and full of aromatic vanilla it was impossible to resist!

As usual, I got too many pictures to fit in a post so I will need to break our time to Edinburgh in two separate posts. So more, tomorrow!

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