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Traveling on a budget doesn't mean you have to do without a certain comfort. In Scotland's capital, you will find hotels that offer great amenities but are affordable. Try the Hotel Ceilidh-Donia, the Tune Hotel Haymarket, the Hotel Twenty, Travelodge or the Premier Inn Edinburgh City Centre right at the Princes Street. The easyHotel is a real budget hotel in Edinburgh. These hotels are conveniently located in the heart of Edinburgh, and most are within walking distance of many attractions. After a long day, they are a place you look forward to returning to as they have a great price/performance ratio.
The Haymarket area you find in Edinburgh's West end and close to the famous Princes Street, features one of the two central railway stations and many hotels, bars and restaurants. You'll enjoy a pleasant stay for good value in the Haymarket and Lairg Hotel, the Premier Inn, Cityroomz Edinburgh, the Tune Hotel Edinburgh Haymarket and the Piries Hotel. These hotels offer affordable, modern rooms with a touch of simplicity. Prices vary between £38 and £70 per night and most include breakfast.
If you're looking for cheap accommodation, choose one of the many hostels in Edinburgh, which are right in the city center and thus not far from the main sights such as Princes Street, the Edinburgh Castle or the Haymarket area. The Castle Rock Hostel is well-regarded. Also worth considering are the Backpackers Edinburgh right on the famous Princes Street, Smart City Hostels in Edinburgh's Old Town or Haggis Hostels by the Waverly Railway Station, inter alia. Travel during the colder season; you can get a bed for £10. Although pricier in spring and summer, hostels remain affordable.
Bed-and-breakfasts in Edinburgh offer more privacy than hotels. There are a number of refined B&Bs that will make your stay a memorable and especially pleasant one while providing you with a touch of home, yet bringing you a traditional Scottish experience. From the Averon Guest House in the heart of Edinburgh, you can dive right into the fray. The Barony House, near the Holyrood Park, starts at £68 November until January including breakfast. Average prices for the Caravel as well as Castle View Guest House are £29 pounds. The Cambridge and Leith House start at £15 during the colder season.
Private lodgings via Airbnb are a cheaper alternative for the traveler who is looking for an authentic Scottish experience. The closer you get to the city center the higher room rates are. However, as Edinburgh is not a huge city staying in Stockbridge or Corstorphine, for instance, is only a few minutes' ride from vibrant downtown. Prices start at £30 for an en-suite double room. Average prices for rooms close to or in the city centre are about £44 in autumn and winter but increase during the warmer season. Visit during the winter months to get the best rates.
Whether you're on a business trip, a backpacker on a shoestring budget, or a traveler looking for a decent place to stay with a few amenities, Edinburgh has it all. Widely known as simple but best budget places to stay are the Smart City Hostel and Edinburgh Central. Additionally, The Hostel, with minimalist-style accommodation, has a good reputation. For a more refined standard, choose Channings and Hudson. You can't go wrong with Jurys Inn and the Thrums Hotel—a bed and breakfast—if you expect a little more from you lodging.
Edinburgh is the perfect city to explore on foot. Nevertheless, rain is not unlikely and so using the Lothian buses or Edinburgh tram might be more convenient. Transportation is definitely affordable; a day ticket costs you £3.50. If you plan a night out and haven't had a day ticket before, you can buy the night ticket for £3. To top-up single fares as you go, choose the citysmart card. For a regular single ticket you will have to pay £1.50. In Edinburgh, you certainly save money as compared to other British cities. Transportation is comparatively cheap.
The easiest and cheapest way to get to and from the airport is by bus. Take the line 100, the Airlink, bringing you to the city centre or airport in about 25 minutes. If you need to go to this direction at least twice a day, an airport day ticket for £9 is ideal. For a single ride to or from downtown/ Haymarket you will have to pay £4. An open return pass you get for £7. The Airlink buses run every 10 minutes.They depart from outside Domestic Arrivals and from Waverly Railway Station, stopping on various bus stops along the way.
Edinburgh is a cultural hotspot reaching its peak annually in August when people from all over the world travel to this city for the International Festival. It's the world's most popular festival with regard to the performing arts. Running along this event is the Fringe, an arts festival featuring all types of art. During this season, last-minute travellers may find more affordable lodging a little outside the city center, in Murrayfield or Morningside. Otherwise, book months in advance for special discounts. Another famous event is the Scottish Hogmanay, the two-day New Year's Celebration. Again, be sure to book rooms in advance.
Learn about Edinburgh's history, Scottish culture and traditions and listen to spooky tales on a guided tour around town. The Free Walking Tours—on a 'give-what-you-can" basis—run during every season and allow you to see the city from various perspectives. Plan about two hours and wear comfortable shoes. The Dark Side Tour, including Calton Hill, takes place after dark. Prices for other ghost tours and history walks start around £11. Many offer discounts for students; be sure to ask. If you are tired of walking, how about a city bus tour? You can hop on a green or red bus for £14, students for £13.
A major tourist attraction, the Edinburgh Castle tour is a must. For £16.50 you can spend hours at the castle, learn about Scottish history and ancient battles. If you book your ticket online, fast track on location is included at no extra cost. If you feel active, hike up Arthur's Seat, the 251m high hill from which you have a breathtaking view of Edinburgh. If you don't want to go for a long hike, walk up Calton Hill for stunning view of Princes Street. Art fans shouldn't miss the Scottish National Galleries. Visit Greyfriars Cemetery to learn about the famous dog Bobby and visit the Botanic Gardens.
While the main sights are a must, digging a little deeper will present another perspective on Scotland's capital. The Water of Leith is Edinburgh's hidden river with a footpath running along it. If you feel like escaping the crowds, consider going for a walk there. The same applies to the Royal Mile Gardens; Edinburgh is a really green city. Additionally, you literally dig deeper if you go underground and visit the Real Mary's King's Close. It's where people lived and worked hard from the 16th to the 19th century and is one of the darker sides of this city.
Finding affordable accommodation in Scotland's capital doesn't have to be a daunting experience. Travelling to Edinburgh between October and February will yield the best prices. Hostels are the cheapest option year-round, or find authentic cultural experiences by booking a room in a private house or apartment via Airbnb. You can easily walk around town or buy a cheap day ticket for unlimited use of the tram and buses. If you choose to travel to Edinburgh during the summer for a festival, book by early spring for discounts and moderate prices.
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© 2016 Hipmunk, Inc. Hipmunk is a trademark of Hipmunk, Inc.