Official Guide to Edinburgh
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The ultimate summer's day in Edinburgh

15 July 2015

Summer is here and every year we like to mark the occasion with our must-do Edinburgh activities. Whether its strolling down Portobello Beach or grabbing an ice cream from Mary’s Milk Bar, we all have our favourite things to do when the sun comes out.  What do you like to do when the sun is shining? Let us know on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram using the hashtag #ThisisEdinburgh24.

In the meantime, here are our favourite sunny day activities: 

Have a barbeque in the Meadows

Meadows Barbeque Cc Antonis Lamnatos

[Image credit: Antonis Lamnatos]

As soon as the sun comes out, the crowds swarm to the Meadows. If you get there quickly enough, you might snag a barbeque spot, where you can set up a disposable barbeque and cook up a storm without damaging the grass. There are plenty of supermarkets and shops surrounding the park where you can quickly grab and stock up some food if the sun comes at a moment’s notice!

Having a barbeque in the Meadows is something that every Edinburgh resident has to do at least once, just make sure you take your debris and litter away with you afterwards.

Eat an ice cream from Mary’s Milk Bar

Marys Milk Bar Ice Cream

[Image credit: Mary’s Milk Bar Facebook]

If you fancy something sweet after all those burgers and sausages, head down to the Grassmarket for a cooling cone of ice cream from Mary’s Milk Bar. Taking inspiration from the traditional milk bars that were popular in Britain in the 50’s and 60’s, Mary brings that joy of savouring a cheeky wee cone during a trip to the seaside right into the city centre. 

With an ever-changing flavour selection and “scoop of the day”, no trip to Mary’s Milk Bar need ever be the same. You can find it at 19 Grassmarket, EH1 2HS.

Enjoy a bite to eat “al-fresco” on George Street

Contini Ristorante Exterior

If you can, try and grab a table in the New Town to enjoy a bite to eat in the evening sunshine on George Street. There are lots of bars and restaurants that have table and chairs outside, including Contini Restorante (pictured), All Bar One, Hard Rock Café, Café Andaluz, and George Street Bar and Grill.

During the day, it's a very popular spot for those grabbing lunch while indulging in a bit of retail therapy. Be sure to keep an eagle eye out for that spare table, as spaces do snap up very quickly when the weather is good! To find out more about the shops on George Street, take a look at our shopping guide

Catch some rays in Princes Street Gardens

Princes Street Gardens On A Sunny Day

Princes Street Gardens is never quiet on a sunny day. As soon as the sun peeks out from behind the clouds, people make a beeline for the gardens, pick out their favourite spot and start soaking up with sunshine. The park is a bit of a sun trap, and with panoramic views of the Old Town to enjoy, it’s no wonder why it is so popular.

Some people choose to buy sandwiches from the shops or cafes nearby and take their picnic to enjoy on the grass. If you wander around, you'll see the picturesque floral clock, the Ross Fountain and a beautiful ever changing display of flowers in the beds by Princes Street. Not bad for being right in the middle of the city centre.

Take a walk down Portobello Promenade

Portobello Beach Cc Alljengi

[Image credit: Alljengi]

A little bit further out, Edinburgh’s seaside is extremely popular on sunny weekends. Here you’ll find people walking their dogs, tucking into a fish and chip supper, building sandcastles on the beach or just sitting and watching the world go by. The promenade has a quirky and charming feel to it, and you won’t walk far without stumbling across a tempting ice cream kiosk or an old style amusement arcade. You can read about Portobello and other Edinburgh beaches in our Must See section.

What’s your favourite things to do on a sunny day in Edinburgh? Be sure to let us know using the hashtag #ThisisEdinburgh24.