The city of Edinburgh has a long and fascinating history, a wealth of cultural institutions and centres, and a dynamic social scene.

History of Edinburgh

The city of Edinburgh is made up of beautiful cobbled streets, ancient buildings and landmarks, with countless historical sites to visit:

  • The spectacular Edinburgh Castle dominates the skyline on Castle Rock, its origins going back to the 12th century.
  • The Palace of Holyrood House, built in the 17th century, is the official residence of the British monarch in Scotland.

Galleries and museums

There are a number of large, world class art galleries and museums in Edinburgh, as well as smaller ones of Scottish and local interest:

  • The Scottish National Gallery is home to masterpieces by world renowned artists like Rubens and Cezanne.
  • Brilliant permanent exhibitions on archaeology, technology and science can be found in the National Museum of Scotland.

Theatre and cinema

Edinburgh boasts an abundance of excellent theatres, cinemas and concert halls:

  • The Cameo is a cosy arthouse cinema, apparently a favourite with Quentin Tarantino.
  • The Playhouse Theatre hosts renowned performers and shows from all over the world, including Amy Schumer and Billy Elliot.
  • Edinburgh is known for its comedy scene, and there are lots of venues that host regular open-mic nights.

Restaurants and bars

Edinburgh has more restaurants per head than any other UK city, hundreds of traditional Scottish pubs, stylish cocktail bars, clubs and live music venues:

  • The capital of Scotland offers food from all over the world, traditional Scottish dishes like haggis, but also, tapas, South Indian curry, sushi and lots more.
  • Teviot is the University of Edinburgh Student's Union, and houses six distinctive bars serving a range of different foods and drinks.

The Edinburgh Festival

Every August, the city hosts a number of arts festivals which are collectively known as the Edinburgh Festival. These include the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, the Edinburgh International Festival, the Edinburgh International Film Festival and the Edinburgh International Book Festival. With comedy, music, theatre, dance, screenings, talks and other performances, there is something for everyone to enjoy. Students can get involved by helping to organise and run the various different festivals.


The Business School

The School actively involves itself in the cultural life of Edinburgh:

  • The Media Series at the Fringe: As part of the Fringe Festival, the Business School hosts talks with influential and distinguished guests such as Lord David Steel and Sir Vince Cable.
  • E Club: The Edinburgh Entrepreneurship Club has been hosting talks with prominent business people, events and competitions for budding entrepreneurs for the last decade.
  • Business in the Arts Summer School Programme: The School runs an eight-week programme that combines academic study with the opportunity to work in an Edinburgh Festival production company or venue.