A guide to Edinburgh at night

Summer nights in Edinburgh are long awaited all winter. The days extend well beyond 10pm and the idea that the city almost doesn’t get dark throughout the summer nights amazes most visitors to the city. Here are our suggestions for making the most of the longer nights if you’re visiting during these months.

Start with an afternoon beer

Even the bars seem prettier over here #edinburgh #Scotland #beergarden #thepeartree #pubsofscotland #travel #wanderlust

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Firstly, grab the best table for sun down at one of Edinburgh’s best beer gardens. You’ll have quite a few to choose from across the city, but we’ve put together a list of some of our favourites led by The Pear Tree – just a fifteen minute stroll if you’re staying in either of our Grassmarket hotels.

Wind down with an al fresco dinner


For laid-back village charm in the middle of the city, head to Stockbridge. There are plenty of things to do including a walk around Inverleith Park, a visit to the ancient water mills of Dean Village or a potter around the mix of shops. If your hungry, be sure to stop off at The Raeburn for an al fresco dinner in the sun. You’ll find a mix of sharing platters, burgers, salads and traditional Scottish dishes but most of all, you’ll be well looked after.

Treat yourself to dessert

There are lots of ways to enjoy the evening sunshine in the city, but we’d argue you can’t go far wrong with an after-dinner ice cream while taking a stroll.

From Stockbridge, follow the Water of Leith. Firstly, go east toward Canonmills and on Inverleith Row you’ll find Coro The Chocolate Café – a chocolate lover’s heaven. Choose from pancakes, brownies and probably any other chocolate covered and ice cream topped treat you can think of.

#gelato #milk #darkchocolate #yum #edinburgh

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Over in the Old Town, Mary’s Milk Bar is a favourite. Ice cream flavours change daily so you’ll always get to try something new. It’s just a few doors down from Apex Grassmarket and is open all day throughout the summer months, but be patient. It’s always busy but worth the wait.

Experience an Edinburgh sunset

Choose from the endless list of places to watch a sunset in Edinburgh. Our recommended list of the best places to walk in Edinburgh hits most of the show-stoppers, but the best place in summer is near the water at Newhaven.

A firery sunset over The Crags, captured by @56_north. #thisisedinburgh #edinphoto #Edinburgh

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If you don’t have time to get out to the coast, any vantage point in the city will suffice. Calton Hill and Arthur’s Seat are relatively short climbs with spectacular views and you’ll catch a famous red sky if you’re lucky enough.

Late night drinks in the city

You won’t have to wander far to find bars and live entertainment in Edinburgh that’ll keep you up after dark.

Bottoms up Old Town!

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In the Grassmarket, The Wee Pub stands proud next to Biddy Mulligans as the smallest pub in Scotland. Further up on West Port, Dragonfly is a great cocktail and live music bar.

Ginning with @jodie_birch #downtherabbithole #gin71 #saturyey

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In the New Town, the area around George Street has plenty of charm. Your favourite chains including Hard Rock Café, TGI Friday’s and All Bar One are dotted in-between more quirky bars and drinking experiences like Gin71, and Hoot the Redeemer.

We challenge you not to be left feeling like you’re in need of a summer city break after reading all that. Tempted? Plan your summer night’s dream and we’ll treat you to a room upgrade (subject to availability) to sweeten the deal. Find out more here.