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CajunAlum Tiger Fan
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The Great State of Louisiana
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London and Edinburgh recommendations - outside of typical?
Hello all, I won a trip to London and Edinburgh at work, so my wife an I are heading up early and staying a couple of days late. We will be hitting all of the typical tourist attractions with the group, so I'm looking for any recommendations outside of the "top 10". I do want to spend a day at the imperial war museum, but other than that, we re open. Any recs are appreciated. Walking neighborhoods, restaurants, pubs, etc.



Pettifogger
Atlanta Braves Fan
Member since Feb 2012
54390 posts

re: London and Edinburgh recommendations - outside of typical?
When are you going?

Can recommend a great private guide if you want to take a tour in or out of Edinburgh to see lochs/castles/the beginnings of the highlands (you can go further out overnight if you have the time). Will take you to off the path restaurants and pubs as well if time and $$ permit.

Stockbridge is a cool neighborhood that feels a good bit less touristy, IMO. Worth a walk and dinner/drinks.


Sus-Scrofa
Arkansas Fan
Member since Feb 2013
2275 posts

re: London and Edinburgh recommendations - outside of typical?
Something I add to most London threads:

Take a water taxi down to Greenwich first thing in the morning. Breakfast at Heaps, walk through the park up to the observatory. The naval museum down there doesn't take long to walk through.

It's a good break from the traditional tourist routine.


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Zappas Stache
Utility Muffin Research Kitchen
Member since Apr 2009
24173 posts

re: London and Edinburgh recommendations - outside of typical?


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hungryone
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river parishes
Member since Sep 2010
9036 posts
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re: London and Edinburgh recommendations - outside of typical?
Since you’ve already got some good recs for London (I concur with both the water bus to Greenwich/breakfast and the Bermondsey beer mile), I’ll offer a few for EDI:
—take a gin distilling class from Gary at Sip Antics. He’s a bartender who runs a small gin school in the basement of a pub in the New Town. It’s laid back, you chat, he makes you gin cocktails, and you create your own custom gin & distill it yourself in little pot stills. Classes are 6-12 ppl max, each person/couple gets their own workstation & still. You get your own gin to take home, complete w/waxed seal and handwritten label. LINK
—take the train south 45 minutes to Dunbar and tour the Belhaven brewery.
—climb Arthur’s Seat. Great views, not a hard climb, and you can even take a bus or Uber partway up if you’re lazy.


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TigersMaul Bammers
LSU Fan
Normandy Park, WA
Member since Apr 2009
755 posts

re: London and Edinburgh recommendations - outside of typical?
London watering holes that friend and I hit earlier this month

The Marquis of Wellington (Bermondsey Mile)
BrewDog Tower Hill (near Tower of London)
Ye Olde Chesire Cheese (near Financial District and Fleet Street)
The Lyric (near Piccadilly Circus)
St. James Tavern (near Piccadilly Circus)
The Blue Anchor (Hammersmith)
The Dove (Hammersmith)

Museums and Historical Sites

The British Museum (free)
The National Gallery (free)
St. Paul's Cathedral (not free)

Restaurants We Liked

Nuraghe Italian (Sardinian) Restaurant (next to The Dome concert venue) in Tufnell Park
The Blue Boat (in Hammersmith)
Home Slice (pizza) in Financial District

We took the Tube everywhere and walked to Buckingham Palace, Trafalgar Square, etc.

Hop On Hop Off bus was a waste of money after we drank too much in one bar.


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CajunAlum Tiger Fan
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The Great State of Louisiana
Member since Jan 2008
7152 posts
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re: London and Edinburgh recommendations - outside of typical?
Thanks to all!

Pettifogger, I'm leaving on Friday. Contact info for your guide?


Pettifogger
Atlanta Braves Fan
Member since Feb 2012
54390 posts

re: London and Edinburgh recommendations - outside of typical?
Jim @ Discreet Scotland

0044 7989 416 990

info@discreetscotland.com


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CaptainJ47
Hawaii Fan
Gonzales
Member since Nov 2007
5402 posts

re: London and Edinburgh recommendations - outside of typical?
Will you have a car? My favorite pub I visited in Scotland was called the Speedwell Inn in Dundee north of Edinburgh. Maybe it was just the day we went but made great friends in there.


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jimmy the leg
LSU Fan
Member since Aug 2007
5937 posts

re: London and Edinburgh recommendations - outside of typical?
London

The Globe Theater...a tad touristy but not overly crowded

Churchill War rooms...I liked touring

A stadium tour is cool. Chelsea was the best one I have seen and it was EASY to get to.

Edinburgh

The Queens yacht - by far my favorite

Ghost tours -of which there are many. I chose the underground crypts and also anotger one that was informative and funny too.

Take in a Ceilidh...and go out of town. There is a hall between Edinburgh and Sterling that puts on a great show


ColoradoAg03
Texas A&M Fan
Denver, CO
Member since Oct 2012
4440 posts

re: London and Edinburgh recommendations - outside of typical?
Take your golf clubs. There's a million courses in and around Edinburgh.

My GF is actually there this week for a wedding at some castle. They're having a tea and spa day up at St Andrews right now.

Wish I could've made the trip, but new truck and diamond ring all within the next 2 months took priority over me going on this trip. Plus, she didn't get a plus 1 to the wedding anyways, even though we live together.
This post was edited on 5/20 at 8:50 am


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Tigeralum2008
LSU Fan
Yankees Fan
Member since Apr 2012
11213 posts

re: London and Edinburgh recommendations - outside of typical?
avoid the "jack the ripper" tours...they're terrible

We enjoyed a "historic pubs" tour which guided us to some cool locations around London

Get to Westminster Abbey early as the lines are super long

Plan on falling in love with Edinburgh! It is a gorgeous city and very walkable. They have a tram that runs from the airport to downtown.


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BlackenedOut
The Big Sleazy
Member since Feb 2011
5085 posts

re: London and Edinburgh recommendations - outside of typical?
Are you going to be there from mid August - Mid May? If so, if you can get tickets to a Premier League match, highly recommend it.

ETA NM saw your next post.

While certainly on the Top 10 list the British Museum and Tate Modern, while touristy, really do need to be on your list. They are free, so you can pop in and spend as much or as little time as you want. Would also recommend listening to podcast A History of the World in 100 Objects before going to the British Museum.

Blackfriars, Ship's Tavern, The Grapes, Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese are all fantastic old pubs worth an afternoon.

London has a surplus of fantastic restaurants of all shapes, sizes, budgets, ethnicities. Borough Market also worth a visit.

I have about 24 hours in London this summer routing back and its overwhelming trying to narrow down what to do.
This post was edited on 5/21 at 2:55 pm


hungryone
LSU Fan
river parishes
Member since Sep 2010
9036 posts
 Online 

re: London and Edinburgh recommendations - outside of typical?
quote:

I have about 24 hours in London this summer routing back and its overwhelming trying to narrow down what to do.

Just remember that the museums aren't air conditioned, so if your layover is on a warm day, you will be uncomfortable in many/most museums, esp above the first floor. I toured the Naval Museum in Greenwich on an 80-degree day, and I spend an extended period looking at Turner's monumental painting of the Battle of Trafalgar because it was in the only air-conditioned space in the building.

I enjoyed Hampton Court Palace on my last trip to London; seeing the kitchens of Henry VIII's palace was interesting. Huge open hearths....



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BR Tiger
LSU Fan
Baton Rouge
Member since Mar 2004
3947 posts

re: London and Edinburgh recommendations - outside of typical?
quote:

Pettifogger, I'm leaving on Friday. Contact info for your guide?


Flying out of MSY on BA? I’ll be on that flight with my family.


AbitaFan08
LSU Fan
Boston, MA
Member since Apr 2008
17783 posts

re: London and Edinburgh recommendations - outside of typical?
I really enjoyed my meal at St. John Smithfield. Definitely not your typical menu - they’re a head to tail restaurant.


CajunAlum Tiger Fan
LSU Fan
The Great State of Louisiana
Member since Jan 2008
7152 posts
 Online 

re: London and Edinburgh recommendations - outside of typical?
Thanks again to all of you for the great recs. I've been super busy at work and need a break. Even though this is sort of a work trip, it's a reward and they take pretty good care of us. We are at the Savoy in London and the Balmoral in Edinburgh, with a couple nights in a castle between and I'm looking forward to it.


BlackenedOut
The Big Sleazy
Member since Feb 2011
5085 posts

re: London and Edinburgh recommendations - outside of typical?
The Savoy is an absolutely amazing hotel. Go to the American Bar and the Beaufort. Place is awesome and well located.


soccerfüt
Truth Detective
Member since May 2013
35344 posts

re: London and Edinburgh recommendations - outside of typical?
Have a Savoy Truffle.

Go to the The George Inn in Southwark.


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lagniappe14
LSU Fan
Member since May 2018
52 posts

re: London and Edinburgh recommendations - outside of typical?
Walk the closes in Edinburgh. At night, you will feel like you are back in time. Pop into any local pub you happen upon. It might be a hole-in-wall full of locals serving hearty fare and dishing out sass.

Scotch Whiskey museum is memorable for a couple of reasons for which I shall not spoil.



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