everybody really does drink irn-bru

Hello blog world, I write from Costa Coffee where I am accompanied by peach iced tea, coffee and walnut cake and hippie ramblings from John Lennon in my headphones - these three things combined with the fact that I am writing away in a coffee shop make me feel like an important author or actually just bad ass. The reality is that I'm not an author at all, in fact I've just finished watching Loose Women and I don't have internet at the moment in my house, so I'm just here writing to tell you about a recent adventure to the land of Kilts and strange orange liquids that taste like bubblegum.

I'm quite proud of that intro, clearly this coffee shop malarky is having an effect on me. Anyway, last Sunday we got home from a lovely time in Edinburgh (it's the northest I've been and I've never actually been North of Wales). Since, we have fallen in love with the city and as much as I love home I can't help but miss the ease of transport and artiness of Edinburgh, the architecture is also amazing, and crazily spooky! I feel like this will be 1/2 or even three posts I do because I have my phone photos, film photos and SLR photos so in a month's time you're going to be very fed up of seeing Edinburgh.

We went away Monday-Thursday and started the holiday with a 2am wakeup for our flight which we were way too early for, this meant we got to Edinburgh at about 8am but also resulted in us wandering around on our first day as zombies with cases (also soaked by rain). We went for an early check-in and slept in the comfiest Travelodge beds for a good couple of hours and then explored for a little bit. The second day was the fullest day and we ticked off a large amount of things from our list and Lauren's list which she kindly put together for us, we ticked off so much that weren't sure what to do the next day!

Favourites

I thought I'd but together a list of my highlights from the trip and some of my favourite places off the list, because this is something I found really useful when researching before hand:

1. Red Door Gallery

(I cannot begin to explain how amazing this place is, I struggled to pick from all of the lovely prints and basically I could've bought everything, I probably spent around an hour in here). I've wanted this John and Yoko print by Andsmile Studio for so long and they had it for sale in there. I also really want to get this Gandalf - YOU SHALL NOT PAAAASS print for our house as I know it's one Josh will appreciate. 

2. Little Ox Gallery - Another lovely place selling prints, gifts and stuffed ducks if that floats your boat. I didn't buy anything from here but I could've easily bought lots. SO MUCH COOL DOCTOR WHO STUFF. 

3. Hannah Zakari - A small shop with loads of handmade jewellery, gifts, cards etc and the cutest pin badges you'll ever see. Located just down the road from Little Ox Gallery in Greyfriars.

4. Mary's Milk Bar

Being a massive ice cream enthusiast this was top on my list. A lovely vintage setting which sends you back to the 1940s, serving gorgeous ice cream.I went for the dark chocolate ice cream and oh my god it was soooooo good and creamy. 

5. Oink - So pig carcasses never look very nice, but damn they taste good. This place serves pork rolls at quite reasonable prices, if you're as brave as Josh you can have haggis with the pork but I stuck to mild chilli and apple sauce on separate occasions.

6. National Museum of Scotland

- We had such a great time in here and considering the museum was free it was the best I've been to, even better than the V&A. It was really interactive and had some gorgeous displays, most of my holiday pictures are of the museum, definitely worth a visit.

7. Greyfriar's graveyard

- Apparently a very haunted graveyard with a poltergeist, reading up on this graveyard was spooky and really interesting, apparently the person who lived there had the house burnt down twice. If you're not into all that spooky stuff it's also really old and has some lovely victorian gravestones (If you're a Harry Potter fan there's also Tom Riddle's gravestone, where you can disrespectfully pose like we did! Although it's spelt differently).

8. Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art

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- I must say the one in the centre just off Princes Street wasn't my thing, which I believe was just The Scottish National Gallery, but we took a big trek to the modern art museum hunting for a Roy Lichtenstein exhibition which was great. I felt so lucky to be in Edinburgh at the same time it was on and really enjoyed seeing the work I had researched in GCSE art in the flesh. The shop was great in this museum too and the grounds were also really picturesque. 

9. Brew Lab

- This was a definite must for Josh who is a crazy fan of coffee. I am a fan of iced coffees and I had a Cold Brew iced mocha here - "Brew Lab Cold Brew is not iced coffee - a distrinction worth noting. Never heated, it's simply the finest single-origin cofee brewed overnight in pure Edinburgh water and triple-filtered for a clean, silky finish."  (Yup, I wasn't going to pretend I knew anything about coffee brewing, so there's a quote from the website).

It's probably one of the most hipster coffee shops I've ever visited, with rustic decor and an array of Bebas Neue and bearded men, but the coffee was good! 

10. Stills Centre for Photography

- This was something we just popped into, but I was genuinely amazed by this collaborative exhibition Here Comes Everybody by kennardphillipps (Upon coming home I also found out that the amazing billboard image is also at Dismaland which you'll see on my next post). A very thought-provoking photo-montage exhibition that you must visit!

11. The Elephant House

I wasn't massively blown away by the food/drink in this place but it did make a lovely place to go in the night with a view of the castle (I'm pretty sure it was the castle). Josh ate haggis here and I refused to go near his mouth until he had brushed his teeth thoroughly. If you like Harry Potter this is always where JK Rowling wrote some of the first pages of Harry Potter. I'm mainly including this for the amazing toilets which are covered in marker pen Harry Potter love.

It has been so hard to fit photos into this post and I still have so many *cry* I had a really great time and definitely want to visit again, the only thing I dislike about big cities is the sheer amount of homeless people on the streets, it makes me feel so sad and I just want to give them all food. - I hope if you're visiting that this list proves to be a little bit useful for you. I'd 100% recommend visiting this beautiful city!

Thanks for reading! :)