Enjoy Edinburgh at Christmas

By Carolyn Mearns & Olivia Scott

Edinburgh officially welcomed the festive period with the switching on of the City Christmas tree and the street lights. on Thursday evening.

As the nights roll in faster and the weather resembles a scene from a Hollywood ‘end-of-the-world’  film, the people of Edinburgh are looking for some winter entertainment. So grab a coat and brave the cold, because theres fun to be had all over the city.

Top 5 Ways to enjoy Edinburgh at Christmas:
1. ‘Fun in the Gardens’: Doesn’t really take much explaining, but we’ll do it anyway because we’re good like that. Christmas time inPrinces Street Gardens means the ferris wheel, ice skating, helter skelter and the merry-go-round. For the young, the old and everything in between this is an Edinburgh Christmas Classic. Wrap up, grab some friends or family and talk everyone into ice skating, as long as you fall down the least, you’re laughing.
2. German Market: Another gem courtesy of Princes Street Gardens you can join in the festivities at Edinburgh’s traditionalGermanmarket where you will find stalls full of seasonal surprises. Whether you fancy treating yourself to acheeky glass of German beer or a sly bratwurst sausage, there really is something for everyone. Handmade crafts make nice Christmas gifts and you can wander round eating chocolate shaped like reindeer at the same time. Is there a better way to spend an afternoon? No really, get in touch if you think of anything.

3. Santa’s Gardens: Dasher, Dancer, Prancer and Vixon, Comet, Cupid, Donner and Blitzen are hitting the city. Minus Rudolph you can see Santa’s helpers at work from 12th-23rd December in West Princes Street Gardens. This will certainly set alight the christmas spark in everyone’s heart, or at the very least you’ve just seen some reindeer and thats a bit cool.

Courtesy of: http://www.edinburghchristmas.com

4. Carol Singing: Love it or hate it, you can’t deny that Christmas has produced some tunes. Held in St Andrew Square Gardens on 29th November, this concert by the Exile Gospel Choir and St Peters Primary School is sure to get you in

the Christmas spirit, whether you want to join in and sing some carols or just soak up the Christmas atmosphere. Then you can go home and sing ‘Good King Wenceslas’ to your flatmates even if they don’t want to listen. They’ll love it, it’s just unlikely they’ll admit it.

5. Have a wander: Okay, so it’s not an “official” activity but it’s fun all the same. The most crucial part of this one is Starbucks coffee in a red cup, a true sign it’s Christmas. Explore Edinburgh at your leisure with your friends, there’s plenty to do and see. Make sure you wrap up warm though, incase you haven’t already noticed, it’s pretty cold out there.

If you’re quick! Activities going on this weekend (27-29th November) include:

Courtesy of: http://www.edinburghchristmas.com

The ‘Edinburgh Sparkles’ Fountains: Fountains on Princes Street! They light up in colour! And are coordinated to music! Just amazing. Only from 26th-28th of November.

Enchanted Snow Globe – Tumbellina: Ballerinas doing ballet in a big snow globe. Only on Friday 27th November with performances at 2pm, 4pm and 6pm, definitely something to see.

There really is plenty of stuff to do out there, but if the weather’s really too terrible, it’s all about the Christmas movies. Love Actually, It’s a Wonderful Life, Elf, Miracle on 34th Street, whatever your choice have a very merry Christmas and a happy New Year.