Official Guide to Edinburgh
  • 11°C

Afternoon tea

Luxurious, elegant surroundings or a chic and cheerful atmosphere? We have sipped, supped and savoured to bring together our recommendations of the top spots to enjoy afternoon tea in the capital.

Prestonfield

Tantalise your taste buds with a divine selection of leaf teas, home baking and traditional sandwiches served in beautiful surroundings.  In warmer weather guests can enjoy afternoon tea in the rose gardens, gothic tea house on the terrace.  Situated in Priestfield Road, it is only a short taxi ride from the city centre.

Tel: 0131 225 7800 (website

The Colonnades

Colonnades Afternoon Tea 500X210

[Image Credit: The Colonnades]

Set within the beautiful Signet Library, The Colonnades provides a truly memorable afternoon tea experience from start to finish. Every detail is just so, from the incredibly ornate, neo-classic decor to the bespoke silver tea stand on which your delicacies are served. Their sandwiches and cakes are all made using the finest, fresh seasonal ingredients with gluten free and vegetarian options available. They also have an extensive list of teas, including their own signature blend, or for an even more luxurious experience there's champagne, cocktails and even their own gin created in partnership with Edinburgh Gin. 

Tel: 0131 225 6051 (website

The Dome

The Dome Cream Tea

[Image credit - The Dome]

Enjoy afternoon tea in majestic surroundings in The Dome’s Georgian Tea Room in George Street in the heart of the city.  Delicate finger sandwiches are served along with light scones and clotted cream and a selection of mouth-watering pastries accompanied by your choice of tea or coffee.  Served from 11am-5pm, be sure to book ahead as spaces for this sought-after afternoon tea books well out in advance.

Tel: 0131 624 8624 (website)

The Roxburghe

The Roxburghe Hotel Afternoon Tea

At The Roxburghe, we believe that afternoon tea is the most civilised meal of the day, and ours is famous throughout the capital. Where else can you experience freshly homemade cakes and sandwiches, and warm scones with fresh cream and preserves, all served with a pot of your favourite tea and overlooking leafy Charlotte Square.  Settle down in the elegant surroundings of our Samovar Lounge and take some time to enjoy yourself. 

Tel: 0131 240 5500 (website

The Palace of Holyroodhouse

The Palace Of Holyroodhouse Afternoon Tea

In the historic settings of the mews courtyard at Holyrood Palace afternoon tea is served daily between 12.pm-3.30pm. Enjoy a delicious range of home-made cakes, pastries and sandwiches served with your choice of palace loose leaf tea. For a touch of luxury we offer a special champagne afternoon tea. Top Tip: Look out for their crown cappuccino rich or sample their rich soaked fruit cake - delicious.

Tel: 0131 652 3685 (website)

The Howard

The Howard Afternoon Tea

[Image credit - The Howard]

Invented by the seventh Duchess of Bedford to curb her hunger pangs between breakfast and dinner back in the 1800’s, afternoon tea has become quite the thing to do when enjoying a leisurely hour or two with your friends and loved ones. Enjoy the famous Howard afternoon tea served by our friendly team of butlers in our elegant dining rooms from 2pm -5pm daily.

Tel: 0131 557 3500 (website)

Channings Hotel

Channings Hotel Afternoon Tea

What better way to spend an afternoon than in the tranquil setting of Channings hotel overlooking South Learmonth Gardens. This is what afternoons were made for!

Our high tea is served daily from 2pm until 6pm and is £15.50 per person. Take your time and enjoy a selection of freshly cut finger sandwiches, homemade cakes, scones and shortbread, with your choice from a selection of loose leaf teas.

Tel: 0131 274 7465 (website)

The Waldorf Astoria Edinburgh - The Caledonian Hotel

The Caledonian Waldorf Astoria Hotel Afternoon Tea

[Image credit - Caledonian Waldorf Astoria]

Definitely one for a ladies afternoon out.   A sophisticated and elegant ambience welcomes you for afternoon tea in Peacock Alley.  This heart of the The Waldorf Astoria Edinburgh - The Caledonian Hotel reflects the glamour of a bygone era.  Your choice of loose leaf tea or speciality coffee is served with a divine selection of dainty sandwiches and delightful pastries.  There are two options to choose from and they’ve even remembered the kids with a fun menu including iced tea and babycino.

Tel: 0131 222 8905 (website)

The Palm Court, Balmoral Hotel

The Balmoral Hotel Afternoon Tea

Exquisite.  One word sums up the style and luxury of the afternoon tea served in the Balmoral’s Palm Court.  Sumptuous surroundings and a delicious palate of tasty treats await you as you chat with friends and people watch in this Edinburgh landmark hotel in the heart of Princes Street.

Tel: 0131 556 2414 (website)

Eteaket

Eteaket Scone

[Image credit - Eteaket]

Vibrant and quirky, this welcoming little tea room in Frederick Street  is a popular choice with both residents and visitors.  Mismatched vintage china and a mindblowing  selection of loose teas served with wholesome baking has firmly put this little gem on the map. 

Tel: 0131 226 2982 (website)

Clarinda’s Tea Room

Clarindas Tea Room

[Image credit - Clarinda's Tea Room]

A fabulous find on the Royal Mile.  This chintzy tea room has a kitch interior with flowery tablecloths, fancy tea pots and warm, cottage like interior.  Serving fresh baked scones, cakes and wholesome sandwiches a visit here is a welcome treat which won’t break the bank.

Tel: 0131 557 1888 (website)

The Bonham Hotel

The Bonham Hotel Afternoon Tea

A luxurious boutique hotel in Drumsheugh Gardens in the West End serving afternoon tea in the small but perfectly formed Consulting Room.  Sweet treats include delicious macaroons and lemon meringue tart.  Why not spoil yourself with a Kir Royale?  Excellent value in a lovely location.

Tel: 0131 274 7400 (website)

Tigerlily

Tigerlily Afternoon Tea

[Image credit - Tigerlily]

Be seen with the in-crowd in this contemporary and very en trend hot spot.  Situated in the fashionable George Street visitors are offered three afternoon choices with a cream tea starting at just £7.95.

Tel: 0131 225 5005 (website)

Harvey Nichols

For spectacular views, you cannot beat the Forth Floor Restaurant and Brasserie at Harvey Nichols. Afternoon tea overlooking St Andrew Square is a lovely way to pass the time.

A fun alternative is to sit around the conveyor belt at the chocolate bar in their food hall and select from the delicious pastries and cakes rotating before your eyes.

Why not share a chocolate fondue and take turns to dip strawberries, bananas, marshmallows and the most delicious, melt in the mouth, chocolate brownies we have ever tasted.

Tel: 0131 524 8350 (website

Mimis Bakehouse

Mimis Afternoontea

A bustling family run bakery on the picturesque Shore area of Leith. Their Classic Afternoon Tea selection offers delicious scones, cakes and tray bakes. With a superb selection of teas, why not push the boat out and add a glass of sparkling champagne.

Tel: 0131 555 5908 (website)

The Glass House

Spend an indulgent afternoon sipping PDM Teas and sampling the finest selection of a delicious combination of savoury tarts and sweet pastries and all in the sumptuous five star surrounds of the stunning Glass House Hotel. Afternoon tea is served every Saturday from 12.30 - 4pm and can be booked directly online.

Tel: 0131 525 8200 (website)

The Carlton Hotel

The Carlton Hotel Afternoon Tea

Take the time out from your busy schedule to enjoy this quintessential afternoon at The Carlton Hotel. Book an afternoon tea for two and you will be served a pot of the finest tea to accompany a selection of delectable finger sandwiches filled with traditional fillings: ham and mustard; smoked salmon and cucumber; and egg and cress.

Younger guests haven’t been forgotten either with an afternoon tea menu created just for children. They can sip on a diet Coke, Capri Sun or glass of water, while tucking into our Jenga sandwiches, which are filled with cheese and ham. Afterwards, the young VIPs can enjoy a French fancy, jam tart, mini chocolate fingers, and a mini scone with jam.

Tel: 0131 472 3000 (website)

Hungry for more? Find more delicious food and drink hotspots in our Hidden Gems section