Shop until you drop in Edinburgh

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While the weather’s wintry and there are still bargains to be had, Edinburgh is a top destination to shop until you drop.

Scotland’s capital is a stunning mix of old and new set against the backdrop of rocky hills hanging over the sea.

Hotel du Vin Edinburgh.' 'Picture © Andy Buchanan 2010''19/9/10

Hotel du Vin Edinburgh.' 'Picture © Andy Buchanan 2010''19/9/10

Edinburgh Castle looms overhead at one end of the Royal Mile, which runs through Edinburgh’s medieval heart, where we browsed traditional Scottish goods including knitwear, tartan and gifts.

We teetered down the steep Grassmarket, peering into the pretty restaurants and unique shops, such as Demijohn which sells beautiful bottles of infused liqueurs, oils and vinegars.

Edinburgh’s grid-like ‘new town’ has more high street shops and we spent our pennies around Princes Street, Rose Street, George Street and the St James Shopping Centre.

We were staying at the luxurious Hotel du Vin in the old town of Edinburgh, not far from the Royal Mile.

The building used to be known as ‘Bedlam’, the city’s lunatic asylum and its colourful history means the hotel is packed with character.

Our room was stunning - dark wood, low lighting, comfy cushions, a large white roll-top bath as well as a huge wetroom with monsoon shower.

It provided a perfect place to put our feet up after a hard day’s shopping.

But there proved too much temptation in the plush upstairs bar.

It overlooked the split-level bistro and you’d be hard-pushed to beat it for quality at a sensible pricing. Open to residents and non-residents, there were daily specials and wine recommendations courtesy of the knowledgable Sommelier.

We eventually chose our dishes over a Champagne aperitif which included pork and pistachio terrine, hake ‘paella’ and roasted partridge with game chips. Delicious.

The evening was rounded off in the fabulous leather-armchair decorated whisky snug which boasts 250 malts and blends. When in Rome, as they say ...

My partner couldn’t resist taking his whisky outside to sample the heated cigar bothy.

Even travelling to Edinburgh is a joy, as the Leeds-Edinburgh CrossCountry trains meander alongside the picturesque Northumbrian coastline.

And with the journey taking only three hours, Edinburgh is an ideal choice for a weekend break away.

Facts

Hotel du Vin, Bistro Place, Edinburgh, has rooms from £145 and suites from £255

Rooms include CD/DVD player and radio, mini-bar, tea and coffee facilities, hair dryer, HdV bathroom products

Phone 0131 2474900 / 0845 3654438 or email reservations.edinburgh@hotelduvin.com

Visit www.hotelduvin.com for more information

Edinburgh is a three-hour train ride from Leeds with CrossCountry’s direct trains leaving hourly

For tickets and timetables visit www.crosscountrytrains.co.uk