How to relax at the 2014 Edinburgh Festivals

This article is from 2014

How to relax at the 2014 Edinburgh Festivals


Chill-out activities including walking tours, meditation and food and drink tastings to help you find your inner calm

Now that it's all kicking off into the second week, all that culture might have you a bit frazzled. Here's our pick of relaxing activities to calm you down

Escape the crowds to Nitekirk at Greyfriars Kirk, which is providing a calm space to contemplate, meditate and pray in silence, or with music, poetry and art. Meanwhile over at Triratna you can rediscover your inner zen with Buddhist Meditation focusing on the power of breathing to inspire confidence. Can't sit still for that long? Get your hands dirty at the Tibetan Monks Art Workshop creating sand mandalas, prayer flags and butter sculptures.

If your idea of relaxing is less spiritual and more physical, then set free those happy endorphins with a walk through Edinburgh's New Town and Its Gardens. Meet outside the Scott Monument to amble through the UK's best preserved example of Georgian planning, or for the more adventurous, Hidden Gardens of the Royal Mile explores hard to find green spaces along the historic thoroughfare.

Eat, drink and be merry with some deliciously decadent food and drink tastings at the Pommery Champagne Cafe Bar, set in the suitably atmospheric Signet Library. Bubble lovers should not miss Champagne Tutored Tasting, or if Scotch is more to your taste then treat yourself to Chocolate, Whiskies and Cocktails which promises to be as extravagant as it sounds. Those with an ale penchant book early for Four Beers and a Burger, run by the local Knops Brewery.

Various venues, until 31 Aug, times and prices vary.

Hidden Gardens of the Royal Mile

Greenyonder Tours Discover a little-known side of Edinburgh's Old Town in this very popular walking tour. Few people associate Edinburgh's Old Town with greenery. Yet behind historic buildings there are a surprising number of small gardens and green nooks and crannies waiting to be explored, all with a story to tell.

Edinburgh's New Town and Its Gardens

Greenyonder Tours Discover the grandeur of Georgian Edinburgh through buildings and gardens designed to impress. Edinburgh's New Town is a World Heritage site and the largest, best preserved example of Georgian planning in the UK. Controversially, it still retains dozens of communal, private gardens, many by Act of…

Chocolate, Whiskies and Cocktails

Annabel Meikle - The Whisky Belle Love chocolate? Not sure about whisky? Fancy trying something different and matching it to carefully selected chocolate? The Whisky Belle, Annabel Meikle has brought together two of Scotland’s finest producers to create a luxurious experience for an indulgent Sunday afternoon. Our…

Buddhist Meditation

Triratna Edinburgh The participants will have the option of either meditating on chairs or on cushions on the floor. Some instruction on posture will be given. In one of the practices we focus on breathing to help develop concentration and awareness in general. In the other, we use imagination to encourage feelings of…

Four Beers and a Burger: Meet the Brewer

Knops Beer Company Ltd This year, as well as our lovely bubbly, the Pommery Bar is stocked with brilliant artisan beers from local lads Knops Brewery. We know you’ll love their awesome ales as much as we do. And we’re offering a chance not just to sample the beers, but also to meet the brewer and hear the tales behind the…

Tibetan Monks Art Workshops

Tashi Lhunpo Tibetan Monks Come and meet the Tibetan monks from Tashi Lhunpo Monastery, who will give you the chance to try your hand at some of the unique traditions of Tantric Buddhism's monastic art: sand mandala making, prayer flag printing and butter sculpture. Learn some Tibetan language and make and take away a…


"A place of peace, an open sacred space. Welcoming people of any background, age or belief. Drop in for candlelit contemplation, music, art, stillness, refreshment, poetry and a sense of space in the midst of your Fringe. Rooted in Greyfriars Kirk and supported by its local ecumenical partners, Nitekirk seeks to create an…

Champagne Tutored Tasting

Sara Hicks, UK Ambassador Pommery Champagne A unique experience for champagne lovers and novices alike. A tutored champagne tasting in the stunning surroundings of The Signet Library, a historic Edinburgh venue. Consistent top quality, Pommery is renowned for its variety and innovation afforded by nine different crus…