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Grassmarket, Victoria Street & Thistle Street Bar


12 December 2023

Edinburgh is full of gems waiting to be discovered, one of the most popular being the Grassmarket and Victoria Street.

Marking years of history, popularly known in the 14th century, this part of Old Town was used as a market for farmers to buy and sell cattle, horses and livestock. Due to its vastly open space, the Grassmarket was also used for public executions with the last one taking place in 1784. Keep a look out for nods of history as you walk through this part of town; The White Hart Inn is named the oldest pub in the city dating back to 1516. Being over 500 years old, it has equally as many ghostly and gruesome stories to tell… In 1791, it was also once visited by Scotland’s most beloved poet – Robert Burns – and believed to be where he wrote ‘Ae Fond Kiss’, one of his most famous romance poems.

At the bottom of Victoria Street, you’ll find the recently restored Bow Well. Built in 1681 this well was the first provider of clean running water in Edinburgh. Nowadays, walk across the curved bend of Victoria Street and you’ll find a bustling street that encapsulates the many years of Edinburgh’s rich history. Glittered with small independent boutiques from Harris Tweed clothing stores to artisan cheesemakers, and old- fashioned bookstores to gift shops, there’ll be something guaranteed to catch your eye.

On your stroll back to Townhouse, finish the day off in the cosy surrounds of Thistle Street Bar, nestled in the oldest street in Edinburgh’s New Town. Here you’ll find the best that Scotland has to offer, from cask ales, draught beers and lagers to an extensive whisky and gin selection. Enjoy live Scottish music in this dimly lit pub or tune in to a game of rugby amidst a bustling crowd for a truly authentic Edinburgh experience.


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