Trendy lounge bar or traditional pub? Whatever your favourite tipple you can be guaranteed a warm Scottish welcome in Edinburgh’s bars and pubs.
We’ve compiled a snapshot of some of the best bars in Edinburgh, covering a mix of traditional institutions and new kids on the block. We hope you’re feeling thirsty…
Favourite bars and pubs in Edinburgh
- Scott’s on Princes Street
- The Raging Bull
- The Bon Vivant
- The Voodoo Rooms
- The Abbotsford
- Panda & Sons
- Copper Blossom
- The Cocktail Mafia
- Teuchters Bar
- The Voyage of Buck
- Heads and Tales
- Foundry Project
- The Festival
- The Devil’s Advocate
- George IV Bar
- Sandy Bell’s
- The Last Word Saloon
- The Bailie Bar
- Carriers Quarters
- Nobles Cafe
- The Lioness of Leith
- Three Marys Bar
City centre bars
Edinburgh’s city centre and New Town are absolutely bursting with cocktail bars and cosy pubs. Head to George Street to enjoy a classy cocktail or Rose Street to enjoy some famous Scottish hospitality in one of the area’s friendly pubs.
Scott’s on Princes Street
A trendy open-plan bar and restaurant in the heart of Edinburgh, Scott’s on Princes Street is the place to be for a carefully crafted cocktail, paired with bar nibbles, a relaxed cream tea or afternoon tea. You can’t beat the stunning views, looking towards Edinburgh Castle, the Scott Monument and Princes Street Gardens.
The Bon Vivant
With an ever-changing cocktail list, a broad champagne list, a comprehensive wine list and an extensive selection of classic and rare spirits, it’s easy to see why The Bon Vivant is a popular city centre bar.
They take a unique approach by offering all wines by the 175ml glass, 500ml carafe or by the bottle. They also conduct blind tastings, promoting smaller boutique wines and unheard of varieties. Definitely worth a visit.
Follow the floral stairs to Copper Blossom and you’ll be greeted with dainty décor, mouth-watering food and an elegant cocktail menu with lots of tempting concoctions to choose from.
Their outside area offers views of Edinburgh Castle, so you can enjoy a refreshing cocktail while taking in the marvellous view.
West End bars
Edinburgh’s West End is absolutely bursting with hidden gems. Get off the beaten track and discover your new favourite haunt in one of the capital’s most charming neighbourhoods.
The Cocktail Mafia
With a menu consists of 37 cocktails, every spirit category is well and truly covered at The Cocktail Mafia.
The bar consists of two rooms – the main room is mixed with modern neon signs and stylish artwork. Within the Miami inspired back room (which is also available for private parties), you’ll find a tropical paradise consisting of cabana-style seating and palm trees to match the green and gold décor.
Serving a range of cocktails, as well as rotational craft beers and traditional cask ales, The Festival also has a beer garden – the ideal spot for soaking up the summer sun.
The perfect excuse for catching up with friends, they also offer a great line-up of events, including Monday Quiz Night, Saturday night DJs and televised sport.
Old Town bars
Full of winding streets and closes and steeped in history, you’ll not struggle to find a decent watering hole in Edinburgh’s Old Town. Explore the intimate closes and find some of Edinburgh’s best kept secrets.
Stockbridge is one of Edinburgh’s charming neighbourhoods. Walk 10-15 minutes north of the city centre and you’ll be rewarded with some of the city’s favourite pubs and bars.
The Last Word Saloon
The Last Word Saloon combines effortlessly cool and quirky style (think paraffin lamps and taxidermy) with its slightly hidden away charm.
The cocktails are hugely impressive but they also provide an extensive selection of small batch spirits, wines and craft beers whilst also experimenting with techniques and ingredients to create truly unique mixers, syrups and bitters, which are all made in-house.
Located to the north of the city, Leith has a thriving bar and pub scene that is well worth exploring. This exciting area of Edinburgh is easily accessible from the city centre thanks to a 10 minute bus or tram ride, meaning that a great night out in Leith is even closer than you think.
The cosy Carriers Quarters is as famous for its history (dating back to 1785) as it is for its steak pies (they sell out quickly!). Perfect for a lazy Sunday afternoon pint or a lively music session at the weekend, this bar is perfectly unpretentious and as traditional as they come.
Nobles Café Bar and Restaurant is a firm favourite with locals and visitors alike. This atmospheric local with stained-glass windows and cosy décor is full of old world charm and modern twists.
If you’re feeling hungry, be sure to pop along and try one of their sumptuous weekend brunches, made with the best local ingredients.
The Lioness of Leith
Just off Leith Links, The Lioness of Leith is an old-style Victorian pub brought bang-up to date with a funky makeover. Its modern art and stylish twists have firmly re-established it as a cult favourite in the area.
As well as an array of local and international drinks, they are famed for their artisan burgers.
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