a students' magazine

A few notes on Edinburgh and on its famous festivals

When we think of Scotland, of course we think of its capital city, Edinburgh.

Edinburgh, with about  463,000 inhabitants, is the second most visited city in the UK  (London is the first). Its history  and beautiful landscapes attract a lot of tourists coming from countries all over the world.

Did you know that it is considered one of the five most beautiful cities in the world and that for this reason it is called “The Athens of the North”?

The oldest part of Edinburgh,  known as  the “old town”, consists of  narrow streets with churches, houses  and buildings typical of the Middle Ages.

The “Royal Mile” is a road that links Holyrood Castle to Edinburg castle, Edinburgh’s most famous castle built on a hill. This castle was witness to several  past events: here James, Mary Stuart’s son,  was born, the first king who would reign over Scotland and England.  Here are the priceless Crown Jewels, and the “Stone of Destiny”,  the coronation stone of Scottish kings. The castle is also the place where witches were executed.

Edinburgh also has  a great night life : in the “modern” part of the city in fact we can find restaurants, discos, glamour pubs and shops.

Edinburgh is a lively city where cultural events are organized throughout the year. The most awaited and of course the most famous among them is the Edinburg International Festival  (EIF), which is held in summer.

It all started after the second world war, in 1947: a group of managers decided to organize a festival with the aim of helping people to get over the pains and the horrors that WWII had brought to them and to their families.  Since then, the festival has been incredibly famous and successful.

This manifestation  takes place in Edinburgh castle and along the Royal Mile, with the purpose of presenting  Scottish traditions through the arts.

In this period  the city seems a big party: every evening  there are performances of drama, dance and music  accompanied by fireworks ; we can also watch funny shows acted by “street artists” , in which the audience is very often involved.

However, the International festival is the most famous but it is not the only one : in August  there are in fact other  “Festivals of Edinburgh” that you might find interesting, like the Edinburg Film Festival,  the Jazz and Blues Festival, the International Book Festival, the Television Festival and the Edinburg Military Tattoo.

The EIF is always on the last three weeks of August… This year it is from 13th August to 5th September .

If you go there, have fun and please send us a postcard! 🙂

Have nice holidays

Francesca

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4 thoughts on “A few notes on Edinburgh and on its famous festivals

  1. In the past, Scottish people were considered very strong and dangerous fighters. Nowadays, as then, they are really proud of their traditions and as i wrote above, i think that they want to present them to an international audience (even having fun, through the arts) during the EIF and other public manifestations as the Higland games, for example.

  2. Hi Francesca!

    You forgot to mention the Edinburgh Fringe Festival which runs at the same time as the EIF.

    The Fringe Festival is an arts festival featuring emerging new talent or acts which are a bit different or alternative which don’t make it to the big international festivals.

    Now there are Fringe Festivals all over the world which mimic the style of the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. There is one currently running in Melbourne, Australia. I was there while it was on but I was too busy doing to be able to get to any Fringe events 😦

    Anyway, check out the promo video for the Fringe Festival in 2010… it’s a great destination to keep in mind for a summer break next year … and you’ll have a chance to practice your English too.

    Edinburgh Fringe Festival

  3. Thanks Sally! Yes , there are so many festivals that i forgot to insert in it…you can’t imagine what i’d pay to see one of those festivals!..who knows…maybe when I leave secondary school 🙂

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