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Arrived in Edinburgh at approximately 6 after the no frills Ryan air which arrived on schedule. Took the 3.50 POUNDS bus from the airport to the train station and gosh it was madness cold!
Since we were still in an english speaking country, everything was communicate-able. *phew*
Dragged our luggages to the hostel and checked into st Christopher’s hostel which was really near the station. It was a 10-bed female dorm with toilet within the room. over the 2 nights there, spoke to a Swedish, Israel girl and a canada girl. All 3 of them were lone travelers and some had no return date planned = and even so, their bags were smaller than mine = Toilet was clean and the whole stay was really good and I booked it from booking.com and the price I paid was even cheaper than the official website!
Unpacked our luggage and stuffed it into the pull out thingy under the bed, locked it and off we go! it was sunny and the person at the reception recommended us to visit carton hill for the sunset.
It was good weather, sunny (rare sight). And we walked around the area, saw this pretty structure and the awesome city skyline.
Sights along the way:
There’s some renovation work going on at waverly station which. anyway, there’s a lot of renovation work going on everywhere. I always think that the old town is all one colour. look at my photos. lol. seriously just one colour.
a chance on the rare sun. this is a clocktower and balmoral hotel i think.
This is the Scott Monument. The sun was against us so I couldn’t really get a good picture. It is a monument to commemorate a Scottish author known as Sir Walter Scott. It is Gothic-styled and it was built back int he 1800s. A really prominent structure which stands in the middle of old town at 200 ft.
This is the famous balmoral hotel and clock tower. Look at the time! It’s like 8pm but the sky is still blue~ This is the wonderful thing about summer. the night is really young!
This place is called the HM Register House. No idea what it is about.
Then we proceeded with a 10 min walk to and up carton hill. It was a really pretty place with the sun glistening upon the buildings. There were a few monuments and it was rather touristy. We heard some Japanese too. Asians are everywhere =p
In ancient times, this place was actually used for executions
After all that bumming for the whole semester, this is the first work out i actually did =p (and there will be many more ahead)
Up and up and up and the sun is setting!
Monument to Dugald Stewart
The City Observatory House, 1792
The Nelson Monument, 1815
The national monument, 1826.
Something interesting: it was never completed because they ran out of money =/ thus it could be known as the incomplete national monument. Also, I realise it is similar to the building behind the USD $5 bill. alright it’s just the pillars. haha.
and the best part of the hill? it is the magnificent picturesque view you can get when you’re at the top. pictures don’t lie. however, things would look great if it wasn’t that gloomy or foggy or hazy or whatsoever, and a little bit more sun, and that the sky is a little more blue. argh, what am i complaining =/ it rains almost every other day. i should be glad that it wasn’t raining!
i like it when the sun is like a huge fish ball or egg yolk.
*as I type this I’m drinking mushroom soup for dinner and it’s 11:06pm. In the yha hostel in London.*
Well, we didn’t manage to catch a proper sunset as the clouds blocked off the descend =[ but nevertheless, it was a pretty sight despite the strong howling wind.
It started to drizzle and we struggled hard to find an affordable dinner place in the cold and rainy night = and.. We ended up in Macs since it was the only thing that we could think of. I ate their special burger which was not bad and it was 3.49 pounds just for the burger alone!!
Oh wells~ after dinner and wifi usage, we went back to our dorm which were full by now. Interacted and talked to them, bathe and sleep.
The next day was a total disappointment. The rain did not stop since morning to night and it went on and on. It probably rained for 24 hours non-stop.
After the free breakfast – bread with Nutella and cornflakes with milk,
we set off for Edinburgh castle – the only paid attraction we paid. During the walk there, we stopped by a church (st giles) and we were chased out because they were having a service. It was extremely cold and we had to stop as and whenever possible.
We stopped by starbucks to get a hot drink. The wind and rain was really madness and I was on the verge of chattering. Look at how gloomy it was~ the buildings already have no colour. Together with a gloomy sky. =/
Water is supposed to be coming out from his mouth =p
Finally we see a man in a Scottish skirt playing the Scottish bagpipe. He really stood there the whole day. when we were returning back later, despite the rain. he was still standing strong, playing the bag pipe D: * salutes*
Finally we reached! There was a little ascending path up to the castle where tour buses couldn’t enter. It must be really tiring for the elderly to walk all the way in =/ Well, do you see the construction at the sides? they were actually building seats for an even happening later in the month. It felt like their national day or something. Couldn’t really remember what it was for.
It’s interesting to see how all castles look somewhat similar. there will be this bridge and there will be a moat surrounding the castle. I guess it is necessary for defence back in the ancient days where they can just draw up the bridges and the enemies will have a tougher time in entering the castle because of the moat. I used to play heroes 3 might and magic like mad in the past =p
Somehow, their state emblem reminds me of gryffindor. Well, JK Rowling did wrote her book in Edinburgh. maybe that’s why~
Queued for about 10 mins for the tickets and then we entered.
Initially it was a little sunny but it didn’t take long before it transformed into a terrible nightmare. The wind was so strong that my cap flew off! Luckily i managed to grab it back. We were just hopping around the indoor attractions which included the crown jewel and also a lot on the military history and of course, the bag pipes of Scotland! It was sure interesting but we were tired too >_< left slightly after 2 hours and we proceeded to..
You can see Carlton hill from here! do you see the national monument at the right side of the picture?
Another great view of the city!
I really love this informative board! they tell you what to look for and what you are looking at. amazing isn’t it?
This is the one-o-clock cannon! it is used in the past to tell the time. So if you hear the boom, you will know that it is 1pm already. however, i think the weather was very bad that day so they didn’t set off the cannon.
Singapore had one too! in the past. probably one of the cannons in sentosa?
I really like this quote inside one of the exhibitions.
There’s almost no one out there because the wind is so strong that everyone is hiding inside one of the exhibitions.
There seem to be some similarity with state crests too. hmm.
I always wonder if these weapons are real. As in, if there’s really a war, can you use these weapons to fight?
a model of the Edinburgh castle.
After spending a good whole 2 hours, we decided to proceed to our next stop.
The Elephant house! If you think that this name is familiar, you are probably a big fan of JK Rowling. She actually sat in this cafe and wrote Harry potter!
The place was awfully crowded since it was a sunday afternoon where everything else is closed. We managed to get a seat after ordering our food with the help of the waiter. There’s really a lot of elephants in the whole cafe!
The view was not bad even though it overlooks a cemetery and the castle.
Ha. Alright, I had a sandwich and a brownie. Greedy me -=
After that, we braved the rain and continued walking down the royal mile.
We went into st Giles (we didn’t get chased out this time) and there was a school choir practicing inside. The acoustics of the church made their music and voices so fantastic. I managed to take a sneaky photo of the grand organ the church has. It was really magnificent..
After walking out of the church, we finally spotted the heart shape crest along the streets.
Then, we made our way down the royal mile, all The way to holyhead palace. The queen spends 1 week in summer in that palace! And it was opposite the parliament. It took us forever to reach that destination because of the bad weather =
Upon reaching there, we were all cold and we took shelter inside the gift shop and then went over to a cafe to get some tea. It’s funny how they get a shocked when we say we are sharing it. Oh wells, life of a poor student.
It was getting slightly late before we decide to get going home. It was a terrible walk back and gosh the rain and cold was almost unbearable ):
Eventually, we stopped by the Chinese buffet place and ended up having a feast there =p
Returned back to hostel after dinner and most girls were already back. Had a couple of small talk and then it was pack up and au revior.
Woke up early, pack up, had breakfast and it was time to go to the train station to catch our train at 10am towards London. Had a table seat within the carriage and settled all the debt(s) and money issues and sleep and looking outside at the awesome scenario.
*And this marks the end of the Edinburgh adventure..*
*See you in Hogwarts*