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Trip to Edinburgh and Amsterdam

Planning a trip to Scotland (based in Edinburgh) and then flying a "regional" airline to Amsterdam. Time from is late August and early September. Will be 14 day trip. Interested in doing some day trips out of Edinburgh (not really interested in trying to drive in Scotland). Would like suggestions on how long to stay there. Same questions for Amsterdam, except driving is an option there.

Interests are museums, cultural sites, some adult beverage tasting, natural settings, etc.

Posted by
102 posts

I guess you're aware it's the festival in Edinburgh through August? As a result it's very very busy and accommodation can be difficult to find and very expensive, so best to book something asap! It would seem natural to split your trip 7 and 7, but I wouldnt necessarily stay a full 7 days in Edinburgh -There is a fair bit to see, but it's a medium sized city (around 500k) so I think 3-4 nights there is enough - and if you're not there specifically for the festival you may start to tire of the crowds in some areas. As a result you could maybe stay somewhere else in Scotland for a few days.

Edinburgh isnt necessarily great base for visiting many parts of the Highlands as it's simply not that close to them. There are day tours to the Highlands that get good reviews, but they involve a lot of time sitting on a bus due to the distance. You can travel to/from/around the Highlands by train - there are scenic lines like the W highland line from Glasgow-Mallaig etc so that may be an option. I guess it depends how much you want of the natural settings. Trips from Edinburgh that are easier are St Andrews and Stirling by train and maybe trips out to local sites like Rosslyn.

If you're interested in museums and cultural sites you should probably visit Glasgow. You can do it as a day trip by train from Edinburgh as it's is 50mins away by very frequent train service - but there is more to see than can be managed in a day so given your interests I'd probably stay a night or 2. It also has better access to much of the Highlands so you could perhaps do a a day trip from there to somewhere like Loch Lomond and take a sail on the Loch or take a trip from there on the W highland line.

I'm not sure why your highlighting "regional" airline? KLM operate several flights per day from Edinburgh (and Glasgow) to AMS and afaik the vast majority of flights are operated by KLM mainline with Boeing 737 series aircraft, their regional subsidiary cittyhopper rarely appear on these routes. Easyjet also offer both routes with Airbus A319s rather than regional jets.

Posted by
5669 posts

I am not sure that I would rent a car in Amsterdam. Netherlands is better connected with trains than Scotland is, so if you are thinking of renting a car in either place, truth be told, it makes more sense in Scotland in terms of being able to see the countryside. Are you afraid of driving on the left? If you don't drive the car in the city you'll find that it is not as difficult as you think. :)

I agree with the comment that I would not spend the full week (or maybe a bit more) in Edinburgh. I would spend a couple of days and then either rent a car or hop a train north or west. It is spectacularly beautiful in the Highlands at the time of year. What interests you about Scotland? Is it castles? Whisky? Scenery? Family history? Music? A bit of hiking? Let us know and we can provide a bit more guidance on places.

On my last trip to Amsterdam, I stayed part of the time with friends and part of the time in the city. I stayed close to the train station, so it was easy to do a day trip to Haarlem. You can do the same for many other cities in the Netherlands. I stayed at Hotel Brouwer. I thought the location was outstanding. My big miss was the Van Gogh Museum. Sadly, it was closed when I could go. I'll have to go back. :) I explored other interesting smaller museums along the canals.