Ireland/Scotland Trip - Day 5 Ireland to Scotland

Edinburgh Castle
Going to bed at 3am this morning did not make me less tired than before. I am glad I get to sleep for the hour in the car back to Dublin and then again on the hour flight between Dublin and Scotland. And that sleep was enough to make me feel better once we arrived in BEAUTIFUL Edinburgh. This is now on the top of my list of favorite cities.
Goodbye Ireland, on to Scotland

The flight was on a propeller plane. My first ever. We landed in Edinburgh and took a taxi to our hotel.

We are staying at The Scotsman which is perfectly situated just off the Royal Mile in the Old Town. Everything that we would ever want to see, do, eat or drink is a short walk away. I do have a couple complaints about the hotel but I would also still stay here again so in the end I guess you could say I recommend it. The complaints I have are that the towel rack in the bathroom is constantly on so it is like a sauna in there. Also, that rack is located next to the toilet so if you don't watch yourself, you can burn your knee. It looks like many people before me had the same issue because the toilet seat is falling off the toilet. The rooms are also pretty warm. So much that I had to take the duvet out of the cover and sleep with only the cover like it was a sheet. The final complaint is the breakfast which is ....just fine. I expect glorious breakfasts. But maybe this is a Scottish thing and not just a hotel thing.
View looking up The Royal Mile towards the castle
That aside, the location of this hotel is unbeatable. We checked in, dropped off our stuff and took a walk up the Royal Mile to the Edinburgh Castle. The Royal Mile is a mile long stretch of street that links the castle on one end to Holyrood House on the other end. We will visit both these places and a bit more while we are here. For now we just took lots of pictures because it was relatively devoid of tourists at the moment. If you come to Edinburgh, I am learning from my family, during the Fringe, everything is crammed with people everywhere you go. So I am happy that we sort of have the town to ourselves. The weather has been holding for us as well. I have many times during the day that I am downright HOT. There is a lot to see along The Royal Mile in our area. The first thing I did was stop at the city council to put my big meat hands in JK Rowling's dainty golden hand prints. The city council is a pedestrian square directly off the Royal Mile. There are various hand prints painted in gold from people who have had a positive impact on the city of Edinburgh. Along with JK Rowling, I was pleased to see, was Ian Rankin's hands. In fact he was right next to her. I happen to be reading Ian Rankin's book Mortal Causes. I chose this book because it is a mystery set in Edinburgh.
Ian Rankin's hands

A personal hero of mine, JK Rowling's hands.
Me and JK Rowling's hands....together!

There are many statues along this street as well as a cathedral and some monuments. When we passed the statue of David Hume, the philosopher, we made sure to rub his shiny toe for good luck. I quite liked the monument with the unicorn on the top called the Mercat Cross. The unicorn is Scotland's national animal.
Mercat Cross with the Unicorn on top.
Hume and his shiny toe.

We took our time walking back down from the castle towards our hotel looking in the shops and reading the various menus. We have all eaten so darn much that a fancy restaurant was out of the question. We all felt like a light pub dinner. It was decided that we would start with a pre-dinner drink at Deacon Brodies Tavern. I normally have a cider because I love hard cider. This pub offered a cider that I have never heard of before. It is called Thistly Cross Elderflower Cider. It is the tastiest cider I have ever had. I want to bring kegs of this stuff home. It is tangy and sweet and a little tart with a slight floral aroma. Oh man, I am thirsty just thinking about it.
Deacon Brodie's Tavern
Mmmmm MMMM! I love Elderflower Cider.
After the drink we walked down more of the Royal Mile to The Whiski Bar where we had dinner. This place has a cozy atmosphere of dead animals on the walls (always a favorite with this crowd), Christmas lights and whisky containers everywhere. They have an extensive and comprehensive whisky menu. I ordered another one of my new favorite ciders and for dinner I got the Whiski Burger which is a cheeseburger with haggis on top, smokey bacon and a smokey whisky and onion chutney. It was VERY good.
Whiski burger and some other options at the Whiski Bar
Whiski Burger and me

After dinner we walked the Mile one more time then went to our hotel for some sleep.