Edinburgh: The Perfect Location

4 December 2017

By Julia Murphy - Over the last couple of months, I have been delving into a number of European cities to find the best location for this year’s short trip. And, finally, we found it: Edinburgh. Through all my research, I feel I’ve already fallen in love with the city. In effect, I can’t wait to get lost in its narrow streets this coming March.

For a group of history, arts and culture, and communication students, Edinburgh seems like the perfect fit. The Edinburgh Castle is, perhaps, the most iconic sight of Edinburgh and is sure to enchant history lovers. The castle was both a royal residence and a military stronghold that protected the city below, and has been around since before the 12th century. Today, tourists swarm to see the One O’Clock Gun being fired at, you guessed it, one o’clock every day. “The Lord’s Ear” in the castle’s great hall may show tourists the gossipy nature of the royals that lived there long ago. This small window above the fireplace was the place to go if you wanted to eavesdrop on the happenings around the castle. With many other quirky sights within the castle walls, the Edinburgh Castle seems to be a must-see.

For art, the Scottish National Gallery is the place to be. The gallery houses pieces by incredible European artists, ranging from Cézanne to Vermeer. With everything from the Renaissance to post-Impressionism, the gallery will give art-lovers plenty to discover. The gallery also has special areas dedicated to Scottish art, allowing visitors to learn more about the Scottish culture. And, if the Scottish National Gallery is not a possibility, Edinburgh has many more art hubs to delve into.

Finding activities for communication students has always been a challenge for the Short Trip Committee. Everything can, in some way, count as communication, but what is actually in sync with what is being studied in the degree? Edinburgh, however, has proved to solve this problem. Edinburgh has numerous literary tours, including one dedicated to Harry Potter, since J.K. Rowling was greatly inspired by Edinburgh, and many other sights dedicated to great authors or stories. The John Knox House is part of the Scottish Storytelling Center and presents an interactive experience about an important time in Scottish history, and about the life of the writer that lived within its walls. If this is not your cup of tea, visit the many monuments and bars dedicated to the Edinburgh native, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, known for his famous character, Sherlock Holmes. Whether its Harry Potter, Sherlock Holmes, or John Knox, the city is a literary hub and the place to go for storytelling, which is a term every communication student is familiar with.

Undoubtedly, Edinburgh has more to offer than just cultural activities. The city has a certain edge to it that is sure to make any visit memorable and incredibly fun. The city has numerous themed bars that are sure not to disappoint, there’s a horror tour, and if you’re a scotch fan, you’ve made the right choice. Any of these activities is sure to thrill any visitor. If you’re looking for a fun Scottish experience, don’t miss out on a “ceilidh” that’ll be filled with kilts and a lot of dancing.

Whether you’re delving into the history of the Edinburgh Castle, mesmerized by the abundance of art in the Scottish National Gallery, or trying to solve a puzzle in the John Knox House, Edinburgh is sure not to disappoint. As chairman of the Short Trip Committee, I could not be more pleased with this year’s location and cannot wait to see everyone in Edinburgh this coming March.

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