Things to do when visiting Edinburgh with a 2-year old

Things to do when visiting Edinburgh with a 2-year old

Ideas for Edinburgh with Children

Many of our visitors to Craigwell Cottage are travelling with a children, so we thought it would be a good idea to put together some ideas of activities which would suit a family with small children holidaying in Edinburgh. Read more

A visit to the Camera Obscura

When our son is asked to recommend his top things to do on a day out in Edinburgh, a visit to the Camera Obscura on the Castlehill section of the Royal Mile is always near the top of his list. He’s been recommending it to incoming guests at Craigwell Cottage since he was five years old, and at the grand old age of 10 he shows no sign of getting tired of making repeated visits there.

There’s so much to see, and photo opportunities at every turn, so our only complaint is that there still isn’t a season ticket or annual pass option for visitors who visit as often as we do. It’s an easy walk from Craigwell Cottage – up Campbell’s Close, then turn right at the Royal Mile and continue up to the very top section of the Royal Mile – Castlehill – where you will find the Camera Obscura on the right hand side.

Although it’s a mostly indoor activity, it’s good to visit on a day where the weather is good to make the most of the great views from the top, and the Camera Obscura itself as it relies on good light levels for maximum clarity. The rest of the attraction is devoted to a wide variety of optical illusions, holograms and tricks with light. Whatever you do, don’t forget your camera! In 2012, the addition of wi-fi Internet access throughout the building encourages visitors to upload photographs to Flickr, Facebook or Twitter as you go round the many floors of the 5-storey high building. Definitely a ‘must see’ on your visit to Edinburgh. We’d allow 2 hours for a visit there to make sure you see all that’s on offer.

The Mirror Maze at the Camera Obscura, Edinburgh

The Mirror Maze at the Camera Obscura, Edinburgh

Playing with light in the Infinity Corridor, Camera Obscura

Playing with light in the Infinity Corridor, Camera Obscura

View from Camera Obscura, Edinburgh

View down the Royal Mile – Bass Rock in the distance, Edinburgh

Free telescopes - Camera Obscura, Edinburgh

Getting to grips with the telescopes – Camera Obscura, Edinburgh

Tower of the Camera Obscura, Edinburgh

Logo on the tower of the Camera Obscura, Edinburgh

Optical illusions at the Camera Obscura, Edinburgh

Head on a plate illusion at the Camera Obscura, Edinburgh

Edinburgh Festival Fringe – Family Review Team

Our family review team for the Edinburgh Fringe Festival

Before our first review assignment

We’re getting into the swing of being a family review team once again for our friends at Edinburgh Spotlight.

Last year, we were stepping into the great unknown, wondering how we would get on reviewing shows, and perhaps keeping to relatively safe choices as it was our first year as reviewers.

This year, our review team is of course all a little older, and the challenge to find shows aimed at the right level is proving a little more tricky. The transition from childhood to the teenage years means that our elder reviewer, at age 13, is eager to try more ‘adult’ shows, while our younger reviewer at age 9 is happy to see shows which satisfy his curiosity and love of magic and science.

All of our reviews can be found over at Edinburgh Spotlight, but here are links to the first few for you.

The Amazing Bubble Man (USA) – The Amazing Bubble Show (C too) – read review

Comedy Club 4 Kids (The Bongo Club) – read review

I Hate Children Children’s Show – Bad Magician (Zoo Southside) – read review

Nunsense – American High School Theatre Festival (Pilrig Studios) – read review

Edinburgh Fringe 2010 Family Reviewers

Dan from Potted Panto with McNaughton Family Reviewers

Our 2edinburgh blog is designed to give a flavour for things to do and places to go when visiting Craigwell Cottage, our little city centre cottage (with parking) right in the heart of the city of Edinburgh.

We occasionally review special events and happenings in Edinburgh, but as a family we’re not able to cover a vast range of different types of event, preferring to focus on little news items about permanent attractions or events which are annual occurrences in the Edinburgh calendar.

This year, our family was given the opportunity to undertake a very special assignment – that of guest reviewers at some Festival Fringe performances on behalf of the review site Edinburgh Spotlight. We were very excited to be asked, and as soon as the Fringe Programme was issued we pored over it working out and planning which shows we would ask to review, and fitting reviews in as best we could with other holiday activities we had planned.

As first time reviewers we really had no idea what we were letting ourselves in for, but the owners of Edinburgh Spotlight were very helpful and patient with us, explaining what would be required. We also opted to go to some shows simply as ‘the audience’ so that we could relax and enjoy them without having to exercise our critical faculties.

Our first reviews of CBBC’s Dan and Jeff in Potted Panto, and the West End Glee Club have now been published, and you can find our other reviews by following the links below We hope you enjoy sharing our experiences.

Hairspray

Sausage & Samosa

Dr Bunhead is Volcano Head

Azincourt performed by Willington School

James Campbell’s Comedy and Song for Kids

Things that go…bump, rattle, klunk, cackle, woo!

Water Babies – Stage Stars Young Actors Company

Fabulous Female A-Capella – In the Pink

Dandelion’s Story – Modl Theatre

Shipwrecked – The Amazing Tale of Louis de Rougemont as told by Himself

Time-Tastical Productions – Dr Austin and Sparks in Space

Indefinite Articles – Pinocchio

Thanks Edinburgh Spotlight for this opportunity to experience so much of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2010.

Dynamic Earth Visit

As agreed with Lottie and Scottie yesterday, it was to be a trip to Dynamic Earth today. So after our delicious breakfast from The Manna House, it was off up Campbell’s Close to the Royal Mile, then over the road past Canongate Primary School and up to Bull’s Close to find a shortcut through to Dynamic Earth. Plenty of photo opportunities en route as we passed the Scottish Parliament building with its interesting ultra modern facades. Lottie had been watching some kids show on BBC this morning about kids setting rules for their parents and says she’s banning me from taking more than 5 photos a day.
Susan McNaughton
October 2008