Plan your October break in Edinburgh
With the October holidays nearly upon us, ensuring that you have lots of ideas for a fun day out is key to a happy holiday. To make the most of your October break in Edinburgh, here are five fun filled, family-friendly activities.
Please note that each attraction requires a pre-booked ticket for admission.
- The Royal Yacht Britannia
The little ones will love listening to their own children’s version of the complimentary audio guide whilst trying to spot the cuddly corgis hiding in our cuddly corgi treasure hunt. The adults will be enthralled too with stories of Britannia setting sail across the world for the Royal Family’s holidays, honeymoons and Commonwealth trade missions.
A ship of two halves, after seeing the State Apartments where the Royal Family relaxed and entertained, head down to the Crew’s Quarters to marvel at where 220 Royal Yachtsmen used to live and work. The Royal Deck Tea Room is the perfect end to the tour. The kids will love the milkshakes in retro bottles with the delicious soups, sandwiches, cakes and scones, winners all round.
After your first visit, you can apply for your Annual Pass which allows 12 months free admission to Britannia so you can visit as many times as you wish for a year!
- National Museum of Scotland
We would challenge you not to find something of interest at the National Museum of Scotland. Currently open with two floors to view, galleries range from the Animal World, with a Tyrannosaurus rex, to Fashion and Style. Even better, the museum has free admission with special exhibitions throughout the year. The latest exhibition celebrates the Year of Coasts and Waters with a look at Scotland’s sea life. Download the museum's family puzzle trail from their website, which helps in guiding you around the Grand Gallery with fun quiz questions.
- Camera Obscura
The Camera Obscura show is currently unavailable due to restrictions however, with five floors of interactive optical illusions, this is one attraction where you simply won’t believe your eyes. From an infinity light corridor and thermal cameras to a mirror maze this attraction is full of pure joy. Each floor offers something new, from the beautiful views taken on the Rooftop Terrace, descending to the Magic Gallery featuring a ‘shocking’ Plasma Ball to their floor of light with holograms and visual effects. The final Vortex Tunnel will send your senses into a tizz just trying to walk in a straight line!
- Edinburgh Zoo
Like The Royal Yacht Britannia, Edinburgh Zoo is a charitable trust who have been maintaining their visitor attraction all throughout lockdown but instead of maintaining a ship, the Zoo have been looking after all their animals! From the iconic Giant pandas, Tian Tian and Yang Guang, to the majestic Asiatic lions, the zoo offers a 'roarsome' time. Follow the one-way system and head to the top of Corstophine Hill, the zoo’s highest point, to spot the zebras and antelope. Whether you love monkeys or meerkats, penguins or pygmy hippos, a walk around the zoo in the fresh air will leave you with wonderful shared memories.
Get the kids ready for their day out with a look at the zoo's online cameras. Take your pick and peek into the panda, penguins, tiger, koala or lion enclosures for a look into life at the zoo before you go.
- Edinburgh Bus Tours
Sightsee your way around Edinburgh on one of the Edinburgh Bus Tours. Give your legs a break, sit back and relax with an audio commentary as you see the city and beyond on one of four tours: the Edinburgh Tours, the Majestic, City Sightseeing or the Three Bridges.
The Edinburgh Tour takes you through the city centre, passing by some of the city’s top sights, including the Palace of Holyroodhouse, as well as a front-seat view of the stunning Georgian New Town architecture, all with commentary by a live guide. For a way to sightsee en route to The Royal Yacht Britannia, the Majestic Tour Bus is ideal. This route also stops at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh and passes by the Scottish Parliament. Take the City Sightseeing to listen to the Horrible Histories audio guide, sure to be a hit with the kids! The Three Bridges tour takes you further afield, so named after the three bridges you will see: the iconic Forth Rail Bridge, Forth Road Bridge and the Queensferry Crossing.
Image Copyright: Helen Pugh, National Museums of Scotland, Edinburgh Zoo & Camera Obscura