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Great value hostel accommodation in Edinburgh

Compare and choose from our collection of cheap hostels in Edinburgh. Options range from traditional Edinburgh hostels with dormitory rooms, to up-market hostels and guest houses, where you will have your own room, to university halls of residence, which are available in the holidays when the students have vacated their rooms.

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Edinburgh Visitor information

An Introduction to Edinburgh

Edinburgh is the second largest city in Scotland (after Glasgow), the country's capital, and the seat of the Scottish Parliament. Owing to its spectacular, rugged setting and vast collection of Medieval and Georgian architecture, including numerous stone tenements, it is often considered one of the most picturesque cities in Europe.
The city attracts 1 million overseas visitors a year, making it the second most visited tourist destination in the United Kingdom, after London.

Activities of interest in Edinburgh

Edinburgh is a vibrant city, offering many activities and historic sites. Princes Street is the place to shop and the Royal Mile is home to thriving pubs and restaurants. Edinburgh Castle, which stands over the city, St Giles Cathedral, which dates from 9th century and the Edinburgh Vaults where visitors join a ghost tour, are just a few of the places of interest.

The city is well-known for the annual Edinburgh Festival, a collection of official and independent festivals held annually over about four weeks from early August. The most famous of these events are the Edinburgh Fringe (the largest performing arts festival in the world), the Edinburgh International Festival, the Edinburgh Military Tattoo, and the Edinburgh International Book Festival.

Getting to Edinburgh

By Car

Leave the M1 motorway at Junction 8 and follow A720 and A71 to Edinburgh City Centre. The journey time is over 8 hours from London.

By Rail

All trains to Edinburgh go to Waverley Station, off Waverley Bridge at the east end of Princes Street. All trains to the north and to the west coast, including Glasgow, also stop at Haymarket station.

By Bus and Coach

National Express and Scottish citylink run coaches to Edinburgh. The city's new bus station is in St Andrews Square, only a few minutes' walk from Waverley station. This is the terminal for all coaches from England, from other towns and cities around Scotland and also for local services to outlying towns and villages.

By Air

Edinburgh International Airport is 8 miles west of the city centre on the A8 Edinburgh-Glasgow road.

History of Edinburgh

Human habitation of the Edinburgh area is thought to have begun around the Bronze Age given traces of primitive stone settlements at Holyrood, Craiglockhart Hill and the Pentland Hills.

In 1492 King James IV of Scotland undertook to move the Royal Court from Stirling to Holyrood, making Edinburgh the national capital. Edinburgh continued to flourish economically and culturally through the Renaissance period and was at the centre of the 16th century Scottish Reformation and the Wars of the Covenant a hundred years later.

In 1603 King James VI of Scotland succeeded to the English and Irish thrones, fulfilling his ambition to create a united kingdom under the Stewart Monarchy. Although he retained the Parliament of Scotland in Edinburgh, he marched to London to rule from his throne there. He ordered that every public building in the land should bear his family's emblem, the red lion rampant, and to this day the most common name for a public house in Britain is the Red Lion.

In 1639, disputes between the Presbyterian Covenanters and the Anglican Church led to the Bishops' Wars, a prelude to the English Civil War. During the Third English Civil War Edinburgh was taken by the Commonwealth forces of Oliver Cromwell prior to Charles II's eventual defeat at the Battle of Worcester.

In the 19th century, Edinburgh, like many cities, industrialised, but did not grow as fast as Glasgow.  It avoided much of the worst bombing in World War Two and as such today retains much of its historic architecture and atmosphere.

Reviews For Edinburgh

Average Score


Based On 819 Reviews

it would have been more convenient if we could have checked in earlier, because we'd come by public transport and had to catch a bus back into Edinburgh. The website was a little outdated, bus fare into Edinburgh is £1.50 not £1.20, there is also a day pass available for £3.50 which would have been useful information.

(Review Of Salisbury Green Hotel & Bistro, Edinburgh)

Seemed to be an issue with the booking when I arrived which, after a long journey, was a bit of a concern. It was sorted out after 10 mins or so, but we did end up in a different building - no problem at all with that but did make me worry slightly about the system.

(Review Of The Residencies, Edinburgh)

Facilities kept clean, all staff pleasant and helpful. Convenient location in Edinburgh for walking and buses. Would recommend and stay again. I was in Lee Hall.

(Review Of The Residencies, Edinburgh)

Very friendly staff, always happy to help. Room was a decent size, beds extremely comfortable so a good nights sleep guaranteed. Some decor was a bit dated, but, had some mod cons like large flat screen tv & WiFi. Could have done with a chest of drawers in our room as only a tiny wardrobe space for clothes, etc. In summary, I would stay there again.

(Review Of Adelphi Hotel, Edinburgh)

Room very comfortable, surprised tea making facilities in room, thanks. Main criticism was shower - quite small, and angle of shower head is unadjustable, pointing into the corner of the shower cubicle, just where the soap dispenser is fixed. Very impractical indeed!

(Review Of The Residencies, Edinburgh)

Very impressed with all of the staff. Professional and helpful. Knowledge of local amenities and surroundings was very good. Would definitely stay again and recommend to friends and family.

(Review Of Salisbury Green Hotel & Bistro, Edinburgh)

The only reason I haven't rated the room as 'excellent' is that it was a standard student room. Basic but clean and very good value for the money. Just glad I am not a student anymore!

(Review Of The Residencies, Edinburgh)

I enjoyed my stay. The service was friendly. Everyone at reception seemed happy - a good sign. UHT milk in the sachets - horrible! Couldn't drink my tea.

(Review Of The Residencies, Edinburgh)

When I arrived at Baird House, one of the cleaning ladies, very kindly showed my the way to my room and showed me where all the amenities where. She also gave me lots of local information. Overall, all the staff were very, very helpful. Thanks you.

(Review Of The Residencies, Edinburgh)
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