Trip Report

cmgosseen
Edinburgh Castle

Adventures in Scotland and Amsterdam

United Kingdom, Netherlands11 days / September 2019

Spent 7 days in Scotland visiting family, then broke off with my husband to explore Amsterdam for the next 4 days!

Highs & Lows

Edinburgh history and the humbling Anne Frank experience

Bad AirBnB, last minute accommodation scramble

Itinerary Overview

We flew in to Glasgow (GLA) around 11:15 and met family at the airport, who took us back to their little town of Dunoon, which is about 45 mins west (and a ferry ride) of Glasgow. The next morning we headed to Edinburgh (2 hr 25min) by car, and checked in to our AirBnB. Explored Edinburgh and met up with more family over the next two days. From there we packed up and headed to Glasgow (58 min) by car, and explored the city (and got tattoos!) in two days. We packed up and moved on from Glasgow back to Dunoon where we would carry out the last leg of our Scotland trip, stopping at a few awesome castles along the way. We spent two more nights in Dunoon, then my husband and I broke off from our family and headed to Amsterdam (1 hour 35 min GLA -> AMS) by plane.  We spent three whole days in Amsterdam adventuring around the city.

  • 2 Nights: Edinburgh
    History and culture
  • 2 Nights: Glasgow
    Shopping and site seeing!
  • 3 Nights: Dunoon
    Getting out of the city, seeing where my family lives
  • 4 Nights: Amsterdam
    Party time! And a getaway just for us!
  • Q & A

    • What would you have changed?

      I would have skipped Glasgow (and gotten tattoos in Edinburgh). I wish we would have spent more time in Edinburgh!

    • Anything go wrong during the trip?

      Bad Airbnb experience. The apartment was dirty from guests before, and the owner could not come clean it. We ended up sleeping in it one night (ick) and then moving to a hotel. We only got half of our refund back :(

    • How was the food?

      I never had a bad meal in Scotland. Lots of meatpies, Scran & Scallie was my favorite for that! Also Greggs was great for a quick bite/junk food. Fish and chips everywhere, so make sure to try some in UK! Amsterdam was quite different, hard to find a great restaurant for an actual sit down meal. We more went to bars and had appetizers or street food, which was delicious!

    • What tips would you give a friend?

      Break away from your family earlier if you can ;-)

    • Packing tips?

      Pack LIGHT! So much walking and crazy steep stairs in Amsterdam! My rain booties came in very handy, as well as Allbirds sneakers were super comfortable. Bring a light rain jacket that is actually waterproof. As much as I wanted to look cute, I definitely needed more practical things!

    • Transportation Tips?

      We discovered Amsterdam's tram system a day late. Buy a pass and use that sucker to your advantage! Amsterdam is quite large and it's very spread out. We were so exhausted after all of the walking the first day, and were so happy to have figured out the tram for the remainder of the trip! For Scotland, you definitely need a car if you plan to venture out of the cities (which I highly recommend!)

    • Any surprises?

      English is definitely not the first language in Amsterdam. The menus are all in Dutch. If you ask to speak English to the Dutch, they are very friendly and do their best to speak English. Menus and signs are the hardest part!

    • Booking details?

      Airbnb was great (except for our one downfall), for the accommodation and the one experience we took. Book the touristy stuff in advance directly through the company's website. We loved flying Delta!

    Lodging

    • Edinburgh, UK

      Airbnb (recommend!): https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/706832

    • Glasgow, UK

      Airbnb (2). One went horribly wrong and half the group went to hotel: Hotel ibis Styles Glasgow Centre Other Airbnb was great: https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/25005828

    • Dunoon, UK

      My family's home on Holy Loch!

    • Amsterdam, Netherlands

      Airbnb: https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/818085 THE COOLEST! 100% would stay here again!

    Photos

    Edinburgh Castle
    Edinburgh CastleBrewhemia17+