Edinburgh’s distinctive air of elegance and sharp innovative streak extend to its high-calibre restaurants. Think worldly fare with a firm focus on local produce. Whether Michelin-Starred bites or masterful menus, the place is a playground for those with a discerning palate. Delight in our foodie guide and indulge in the capital’s unrivaled culinary scene.
Restaurant Martin Wishart
A luminary in the British Michelin-Star scene, Edinburgh-born chef Martin Wishart cooks up a perfect storm time after time. As a pilgrimage site for food enthusiasts, his flagship eatery Restaurant Martin Wishart never fails to deliver imaginative dishes using finely-tuned French cooking techniques. Each taste, a testament to his complete mastery of craft, is humbled by the quality of the local ingredients. It’s this mastery that led superchef Wishart to place Scotland on the map as a foodie destination.
The Witchery by the Castle
Perhaps Scotland’s most famous restaurant, The Witchery by the Castle boasts a spellbinding dining experience marinated in plenty of atmospheric charm. Adorned with oak-panelling, historic tapestries and a sea of candles, the original baroque dining room is both lavish and decadent, serving as the perfect setting for an unforgettable meal as delicious as the décor. Dining in the Secret Garden mirrors a fairytale. To quote Andrew Lloyd Webber: ‘Is this the prettiest restaurant ever?’.
A restaurant with a story, Rhubarb operates out of the esteemed 17th-century manor hotel Prestonfield House. This romantic pick comes with all the bells and whistles, from the dramatic decor to the ultra-gourmet dishes. A rustic name for an opulent experience, Prestonfield was the first Scottish estate to breed rhubarb back in the 18th century. From clever cocktails amidst the grounds to the intimate meals, Rhubarb is better than any dessert.
Never one to miss a culinary beat, The Kitchin redefines the nature to plate trend, rendering it less of a fad and more of a mentality. Tom Kitchin’s deep respect for seasonal produce when paired with his honed French cooking style, results in a desirable Michelin-starred menu overflowing with flavour. The garnish, of course, is the knock-out ambience and attention to detail. Like a fine wine or artisanal cheese, The Kitchin gets even better with age.
Aptly named, Number One honours modern Scottish cuisine with its flawless melding of flavours and cunning menu filled with the finest local ingredients. With executive chef Jeff Bland at the helm and the sharp Sommelier with a penchant for perfect pairings, this Michelin-starred dining experience is one to write home about. Laden with art and classy contemporary furnishings, Number One has the flavours, the charm, the reputation and the ambience. Edible alchemy at its finest.
Between the ever-evolving weekly menu, swanky furnishings and informed wine list, 21212 is one to watch out for. Pinned as Edinburgh’s only Michelin-starred restaurant with rooms, Paul Kitching’s masterpiece is housed in a striking Georgian Townhouse. The chameleon menu sports three choices per course and pays tribute to his contemporary French cooking flair.
Ondine lives up to its description as a ‘proper seafood restaurant’, multiplied by ten. With food as desirable as the ambience, eating here is faultless, thanks to the prowess of chef patron Roy Brett. From scallops and razor clams to lobsters, mussels and all the good stuff in between, the sustainable seafood and shellfish are locally sourced from the finest fisherman around the East coast of Scotland and afar. This is a wonderfully stylish oyster bar brimming with expertly cooked ocean fruits.
The Pompadour at the Waldorf Astoria Edinburgh Caledonian is suited to those with a fancy for the full fine dining experience, white tablecloths and all. This pukka restaurant possesses a palatial Victorian railway hotel feel and sublime Castle views. The French haute cuisine food is second to none, with no expenses spared.
A failsafe staple in Edinburgh’s fine dining scene, The Dome is adored by locals and visitors alike. Towering Corinthian pillars dance up its Graeco-Roman façade, but what awaits inside is a feast for the eyes — think flowers aplenty and grand décor. Menu wise, the traditional Scottish food stimulates the senses and the cocktails are expertly concocted.
Volcanic Iceland Epic Trip
meet our Local Insider
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN A GUIDE?
WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR JOB?
It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.
WHAT DESTINATION IS ON YOUR TRAVEL BUCKET-LIST?
I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!
Every CULTURE TRIP Small-group adventure is led by a Local Insider just like Hanna.
KEEN TO EXPLORE THE WORLD?
Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world
Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.