Family things to do in Edinburgh

If you’re spending part of the summer in and around Edinburgh, you’ll be looking for lots of attractions to keep you busy. Luckily, there’s heaps to do in this fabulous Scottish city, with exciting activities that the whole family can enjoy. Let’s take a look at some of the best things to do in Edinburgh this summer.


Take in a show


If you’ve been missing out due to the pandemic, there are now many more opportunities to enjoy indoor activities, such as theatre trips. This August, you can explore the fantastic world of Dragons and Mythical Beasts at Underbelly at the Edinburgh Fringe. This interactive show is ideal for children, and brings you face to face with a host of creatures of all kinds, from the tooth fairy and unicorn to the mysterious Indrik and Japanese Baku. Just be sure not to wake the dragon… It’s one of the best shows for kids in Edinburgh, and tickets are available now, so don’t miss out!


Embark on a tour


Edinburgh has a long and rich history, and a walking tour is the perfect way to learn about the city. It boasts several spots that served as inspiration for locations in the Harry Potter books, and has a strong connection to witchcraft. Routes, maps and audio for self-guided walking tours are readily available, and the joy of doing it yourself means the kids can explore the stops for as long as they like before you head to the next location.


Discover Leith


One of the city’s trendiest neighbourhoods, Leith is full of free things to do for the whole family. Take a stroll along the Water of Leith walkway, which passes lots of points of interest including Murrayfield Stadium and the Scottish Gallery of Modern Art. It’s suitable for bikes, wheelchairs and buggies, and you might even spot some local wildlife, including otters, stoats, kingfishers and woodpeckers.


Alternatively, you can check out live music and street food at The Pitt Market. Adults can sample craft beers and diverse wines, while the whole family can browse vintage clothes shops and record store pop-ups.


Relax in nature


Just a mile from the city centre you’ll find the 72-acre Royal Botanic Gardens, a pocket of tranquillity among the bustle. Explore the Rock Garden, Alpine Houses, Chinese Hillside and Woodland Garden at your leisure, or take a guided walk to learn more about the highlights. British Sign Language tours are offered too, and you can round off your visit with lunch or afternoon tea.


For more energetic families who want 360-degree views from the top of an extinct volcano, a climb up Arthur’s Seat in Holyrood Park is just the ticket. Peaking at 250 metres, it offers stunning views across the city and out as far as the Forth Bridges. There are several routes to suit varying abilities.


Whatever your plans are in Edinburgh this summer, don’t miss Dragons and Mythical Beasts, one of the most exciting plays for children you’ll see this year!