Edinburgh's Christmas sign

Day 1. Edinburgh at Christmas

It had been exactly three years since my last visit to Edinburgh and as it's one of my favourite cities, that was far too long. So, to remedy the situation, we managed to squeeze in a short break to the Scottish capital just before Christmas.  We travelled on a Cross-Country train that was over-crowded all …

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Illuminated Santa 'Zippy', Manchester Christmas Market

Manchester’s Magical Christmas Markets

It wouldn't be Christmas for our family without a visit to our beloved Manchester, a northern city that certainly knows how to put on the sparkle over the festive period.  Christmas markets are to be found all over the city centre and when darkness falls the little wooden huts take on even more of a …

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River Ouse, York

Day 1.  An afternoon in York on my way to Edinburgh

On my way north to Edinburgh for a pre Christmas weekend away with one of my sons, I decided to spend the afternoon in York as that was where I needed to change trains. I hadn't visited this historic northern city for several months so on this bright but chilly afternoon I started with a …

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Edinburgh Castle at night

Day 2. Exploring Edinburgh

Waking up to bright blue Scottish skies we started the day with full Scottish breakfasts then took a look inside ScotlandsPeople near Waverley Station on Princes Street.  This beautiful building is the official Scottish government resource for genealogical research and despite not having any Scottish ancestors ourselves it's still an interesting place to visit in the city …

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Leith Water

Day 3.  Leith and rugby at Murrayfield 

After a good night's sleep and a hearty breakfast, we bought day tickets for Lothian's trams and buses costing £4 each and after taking a look in the beautiful Jenner's department store, we caught a bus along to Leith.  There was a small market taking place so we glanced round the stalls and sampled some …

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Edinburgh Christmas decorations

Day 4. Edinburgh Christmas 

Our final morning in lovely Edinburgh and the time has sped by so quickly. we've had so much fun.  After checking out of our hotel, the Queen Street Travelodge, we left our luggage to collect later in the day and went off to a nearby pub for breakfast. A little later on, we returned to …

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Manchester Christmas Market stalls

Christmas – Manchester Style

I may be a little biased having been brought up in the north west of England but there is no better way to get into the festive spirit than to visit Manchester during the Christmas season.  Throughout December many of the city's streets and squares are bustling with festive activity.  Attractive Christmas market stalls adorned …

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