We started our day at Kate’s cafe, we really enjoy the coffee and cakes here as well as it being a snug setting. Kate the owner loves dogs and has one herself, he is there most days and even has his own homemade pen in the cafe.
After a lovely coffee, we headed to The Meadows; a big urban park and a great space to let your dog run free. We walked through The Meadows on our way to Edinburgh Castle. The Meadows is great for making dog friends and also a great place for people watching, in The Meadows people set up tightropes between the trees, play the drums, there is even an Edinburgh Quidditch team, that’s right the The Holyrood Hippogriffs are one of the oldest quidditch clubs in the UK. Like we say, a great place to ‘people’ watch and plenty of benches.
The walk up to the castle is normally very busy but takes in some of the old cobble streets, street performers line the Royal Mile and once in the castle grounds the view over the city is vast in all directions. The castle tour itself is not dog friendly however the grounds are.
Camera Obscura & World of Illusions
Most people don’t know this but the kid friendly, major tourist attraction of Edinburgh is dog friendly! You can enjoy the attraction alongside your dog (and kids!) as you take advantage of the optical illusions, the funny mirrors and the rooftop terrace.
St James Center
From the Royal Mile we headed to the newly built St James Shopping center, which has just been purposely built to be more attractive and is now dog friendly, this means you can take your dog shopping, even your dog will love shopping if you take them to John Lewis’s pet section, lots of toys to purchase!
For dogs that are timid, or may want to wee on the clothes or just need a rest then there are dog backpacks and dog prams free of charge at the customer service desk (and yes everyday these are used!) The dog prams are suitable for large breeds. So if you fancy pushing your 30kg dog then this is an option! At the customer service desk you can find your nearest dog drink point and a map of all the dog friendly shops that supply dog treats – we headed straight there.
One of the restaurants even does a healthy dog-menu, check out Maki & Ramen
We stopped in at a cool food place called Bross Bagels, this is dog friendly, has a dj on site and you may find people dancing with their dogs while eating a fully stuffed bagel! We opted for a take out and headed out of the shopping center for some quiet (the DJ was a little loud) and fresh air.
The back door of St James Center leads you to Carlton Hill.
A small high hill that attracts tourists but also boasts enough space to find a quiet seat or a spot on the hill side for a bit of lunch. From the top Arrow had gravy bones and I had the yummy bagel. It was a chance for Arrow to be off lead and stretch her legs as well as play with some other dogs and hide in the bushes. It is higher up so even on a good day it can be cold. The views over the city and the water make it a worthwhile stop for visiting.
From Carlton Hill we looped back onto the famous Royal Mile a bit further down (away from Edinburgh castle) and we were treated to some Scottish bagpipes playing, by this point in the day both Arrow was tiered, she just stared blankly at the bagpipes, however if you have never heard these before then beware! It is a love-hate relationship with the Scottish tunes!
Lady and the Bear
We ended our day at the other end of The Meadows at a lovely cafe called Lady and the Bear, again great coffee and dog friendly water bowls provided on request. This cafe is head to toe glass and is nice and airy. Arrow lay straight down and went to sleep, full on snoring, no blinking, people walked past our table and she didn’t move an inch! A very happy and content pup ready for her bed. Me included!