Monday, 25 June 2018

Dean Village | How to enjoy Edinburgh's hidden gem in a day!

Being the Scottish capital, Edinburgh is a tourist hot spot for both longhaul visitors and us Scots. It's my favourite Scottish city, after Aberdeen of course! I fall in love a little more each time we visit. But what do you do when you've already been to the castle, you've done Camera Obscura, you've climbed Arthur's Seat and Calton Hill, you're bored of the zoo and you've even eaten your weight in chocolate at the Chocolate Lounge in Harvey Nics (twice)? 

Dean Village Edinburgh

You think like a local and discover the city's hidden gems of course! On our most recent trip we headed to picturesque Dean Village for the first time. It's such a beautiful little spot, just a short walk from Prince's Street and yet neither of us even knew it existed until recently! It was a really lovely relaxing Sunday in Edinburgh - the kind of day where you don't really do anything yet you feel like you've done so much...


Dishoom Edinburgh
Dishoom Edinburgh

It started with breakfast at Dishoom. Overlooking St Andrews Square, this beautiful Indian restaurant is famed for it's breakfast naan rolls. Of course Gordon went the whole hog and treated himself to the Big Bombay, complete with streaky bacon, peppery pork sausages, a mountain of akari (spiced scrambled eggs), grilled tomato and mushrooms, two home made buns and masala beans - which I might have pinched!

Breakfast at Dishoom Edinburgh
Breakfast at Dishoom Edinburgh

I have to confess I was a little disappointed with the sausage and egg naan roll - it was tasty enough with the addition of cream cheese and a chilli tomato jam, but just a little underwhelming. Perhaps it was food envy from Gordon's monster plate, or maybe I would have enjoyed the bacon naan more. Either way, Dishoom is a beautiful setting, and I would absolutely return to try their other dishes.

Breakfast at Dishoom Edinburgh

Our bellies full, we strolled along George Street and past Queen Street gardens, making our way to Stockbridge market. Every Sunday the market pops up on Saunders Street, by the Waters of Leith, with a whole host of local traders. It's a great place for a street food lunch or to pick up some more unusual souvenirs.  

Stockbridge Edinburgh
Bearded Barista at Stockbridge Market
Flowers at STockbridge market Edinburgh
Waters of Leith Edinburgh

From Stockbridge we grabbed a coffee at the Bearded Barista and followed the river along, admiring the views until we reached Dean Village. Back in the day the village was known for grain milling, thanks to it's location by the water, and you'll still spot lots of remnants from these days along the way.

Dean Village Edinburgh
Dean Village Edinburgh

A World Heritage site, Dean Village is picture perfect, like a postcard from another life. Buildings are surrounded by greenery and the residents clearly take pride in this little gem of a neighbourhood, with perfectly manicured urban gardens lining the streets.

Dean Village Edinburgh
Well Court Dean Village Edinburgh

Well Court was originally built as housing for the working class back in the 1880s but has recently been restored by Edinburgh World Heritage. Using traditional materials, they've managed to bring the red sandstone building back to life with minimal change to it's original look, making it one of the most iconic buildings in the village. Step into the courtyard for a closer look at the clock tower and Well Court's impressive turretts!

Dean Village Edinburgh
Dean Village Edinburgh
Dean Village Edinburgh

Once you've explored the village a little, you can either continue along the waters of Leith, following signs to Dean Gallery and the Gallery of Modern Art. Otherwise head back the way you came like we did, and you'll soon find yourself back in the hustle and bustle of Prince's Street and Edinburgh's New Town.

Copper Blossom Edinburgh
Cocktails at Copper Blossom Edinburgh

I recommend finishing the afternoon with a couple of cocktails at another Edinburgh gem - Copper Blossom. From one green oasis to another, enjoy a Flowering Lychee with Edinburgh's least hidden gem (the castle) as your backdrop!

Copper Blossom Edinburgh

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