The Meadows, Edinburgh

The Meadows, Edinburgh

Although Edinburgh is a city, it’s a small city and you’re never far away from the many green spaces that surround it and lie within it. The main green space called The Meadows is probably the most used. Lying to the south of the city centre, it is surrounded by the beautiful areas of Marchmont and Bruntsfield and, of course. the gorgeous city centre of Edinburgh with all its tourist attractions as well as the University buildings and many cafes, shops and restaurants.

Looking towards Edinburgh Castle as you enter The Meadows from Bruntsfield Links
Looking towards Edinburgh Castle as you enter The Meadows from Bruntsfield Links

The Meadows is an important area and facility within the City of Edinburgh. If we look back in history  up until around 1621 when Edinburgh’s piped water from Comiston was put in place, the loch that covered part of The Meadows provided much of the water for Edinburgh.  After the piped water was established it was eventually drained and from that time it was steadily improved and turned into a place where people could meet and socialise and eventually, an act of parliament in 1827 made The Meadows a permanent place of recreation by protecting it from building development.

One of the many paths used for walking and cycling thoughout The Meadows
One of the many paths used for walking and cycling throughout The Meadows

Over the years it has seen much activity. In the 1800’s it was the place where Hibs and Hearts football clubs played and in the second world war some of the space there was laid to allotments where crops were grown to help the city be more food independent.

The modern and very expensive Quarter Mile apartments overlooking The Meadows, Edinburgh.
The modern and very expensive Quarter Mile apartments overlooking The Meadows, Edinburgh on a Winter’s Evening

Today, The Meadows is a very attractive recreation area. Any day of the week and all year round  you can go to the meadows and see runners, dog walkers, cyclists and children using the park’s facilities.

An Edinburgh Police car rushes past The Meadows to someone’s aid somewhere in the city

What’s on in The Meadows?

The Meadows is host to many official events such as the The Meadows Festival. It hosts the start and finish point for the Edinburgh Moon Walk. You can also attend the Edinburgh Fringe Sunday at The Meadows and The Meadows Marathon.  And, if you fancy a game of tennis there’s always the tennis courts there. 

Meadows Tennis on a January Evening

Of course, these are just some of the things going on at The Meadows but you can also feel free just to wander through and enjoy this green space for the beauty that it is.

One of the Wonderful Children’s Play Parks in The Meadows, Edinburgh.

Please enjoy The Meadows responsibly, take your rubbish home with you or deposit it in one of the many bins available and if you have a dog with you, please use poop bags to dispose of your dogs waste in the appropriate manner. Keep Edinburgh clean. x

A Lovely Couple of Hours in Edinburgh Butterfly and Insect World

Just relaxing on a leaf

Winter Sundays in Edinburgh can be a bit slow. There’s lots to do but if you are feeling the cold and just want to be somewhere warm, what do you choose to do? Cinema, bowling, etc are all great but sometimes you feel like being in touch with nature again and one place you can do that is Butterly and Insect World at Lasswade.

Easily accessible by car or, if you prefer the bus, you can catch many buses to Butterfly World. Look on https://moovitapp.com/index/en-gb/public_transportation-Butterfly_World-Scotland-site_8175229-402 to see which bus is best for you. The bus stops right outside it.

I know I’m not a butterfly but do you like me anyway?

On their website, there’s plenty of information about what they offer as well as the standard opening times and prices. https://www.edinburghbutterflyworld.com/ . Bear in mind that the ticket price is a day ticket so even if you go out for lunch or a walk around the nearby garden centre and shopping complex, as long as you keep your ticket you may go in and out as often as you want in that day. That means you can make a day of it in the area because, serviced by the same car park, you have Dobbies Garden World and its lovely cafe and shops such as Lakeland and Shuropody, etc https://www.dobbies.com/find-a-garden-centre/edinburgh/

We love it here, hanging out with our buddies.

When we went on Sunday, the first thing that struck me was how small it was. However, we found that you could easily spend a couple of hours there just sitting and giving the butterflies a chance to come to you, which they did. While we strolled through, it was lovely to feel the warm, almost tropical temperatures and enjoy seeing the butterflies glide past us and, a couple of times, land on our hair and clothes! There are seats strategically placed to allow visitors to spend time just absorbing the quiet atmosphere and gaze at the various types of butterflies flying freely in this purpose made environment. On the way in you can purchase an identification catalogue which shows the types of butterflies you might see and allows you to tick them off as you identify them; a great thing for the kids.

Don’t worry, I’m behind glass.

In this area, there are other animals to see too. We spotted some bantam hens wandering about. There were tortoises and terrapins.

I want to touch your finger.

When we’d have enough of serenity we decided to challenge our fears a little and entered the reptile house. Again, not a huge place but it had enough to keep us curious. Snakes, lizards of various kinds, various insects and Spiders! Some of the biggest, hairiest spiders! Fortunately,  these guys were all behind screens and visitors could look on without worrying about one crawling up their leg.  There was also an area for nocturnal animals; slightly darker and here you could see various small nocturnal animals.

I’ve just emerged; where am I?

On the way out we had the obligatory look around the gift shop and there you could buy novelty items, big or small. Many things were offered at pocket money prices but there were also more expensive items if you wanted something a bit special.

Yummy, some rotting apples for dinner.

After our visit to Butterfly World we had a little stroll through the shops and the garden centre and noticed that there is a farm shop selling food as well as a butchers, a cycle shop and many others.

Absolutely beautiful

All in all, we had a lovely time and I would certainly recommend this day out. It’s suitable for all ages and abilities and especially if you have any little ones interested in bugs and beasties.  

If you wish to holiday in Central Scotland, see the facebook page for holiday accommodation in a central location of Scotland https://www.facebook.com/Edinburghdaze/