Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Madeleine, 23
History & Politics Student
see her Edinburgh city guide

ask Madeleine about

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What do you do and why do you do it?

I've just returned to this incredible city to finish my History and Politics degree after taking a year off to work and travel, and I am so happy to be back! I love what I study because I feel passionately about the world and understanding the way it works- that said, there are definitely times during exam season when I wish I was still travelling!

What are the best TV shows of all time?

My favourite easy watches which I've rewatched countless times are The OC, Scrubs and early seasons of Grey's Anatomy. In terms of real quality, I'd say Boardwalk Empire and The West Wing.

What’s the area/ spot in town you’ll never be caught dead in?

Hive. I don't care what anyone says about free entry, cheap drinks and cheesy music- clubs should not smell like that.

What’s the thing you LOVE to do in your city that you never get to do?

On Sundays I love to walk all the way across town to Stockbridge, start the day with breakfast from the farmers market, then follow the Waters of Leith from Dean Village all the way to the Leith docks before finding some lunch. Some of the best restaurants are in Leith- wish I could do more of these walks and get out of the city centre more often but a combination of Scottish weather and busy student life makes it difficult!

Is there a hidden bar / hole in the wall in Edinburgh that you particularly like?

There are many! But my favourite would have to be Under the Stairs- a cosy bar hidden away in the centre of town with an amazing cocktail selection.

What’s the most expensive restaurant / spa / hotel you’ve ever been to in Edinburgh? How much did it cost and what did you get there?

Probably Tom Kitchin's restaurant The Kitchin in Leith- absolutely incredible, Michelin-starred food in a beautiful restaurant by the water. It was the first meal I ever ate in Edinburgh- courtesy of my parents as they dropped me off at university! I had the freshest scallops in a white wine and garlic sauce to start, Highland wagyu rib cap for main and chocolate soufflé for dessert. Undoubtedly one of the best meals of my life.

Where can you get the best cocktail in Edinburgh? Which one do you like?

Panda & Sons is a really fun speak-easy themed cocktail bar in New Town which I'd definitely recommend to anyone on the hunt for the best cocktail in town.

What’s the one place you think is overrated in Edinburgh?

Arthurs Seat - you get a better view from Calton Hill, which is more conveniently located in the centre of town and less of a hike to reach the top!

What’s your favorite vacation city in the world and why?

Depends on the purpose of the holiday- if the goal is to relax and unwind it's got to be the Thousand Islands in Indonesia. Unparalleled beaches and full of fond holiday memories for me growing up in that part of the world. Beyond that, the food and culture- locals are unwaveringly kind, warm and welcoming to tourists. However if it's activity and bustle I'm seeking then it always comes back to New York. I'll never run out of new things to do or places to eat!

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Andy Holbrook