41 amazing things to do in Edinburgh with teenagers

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Edinburgh is a great destination for a family vacation, There are plenty of things to do and see in Edinburgh with teenagers. Edinburgh is home to many historical sites and museums, as well as a strong association with Hollywood blockbusters like Harry Potter and Outlander.

There are plenty of things to do with teenagers in Edinburgh such as biking trails, footgolf, go-karting and more. If you’re looking for a bit of culture, Edinburgh has many tours and sightseeing options, while there are plenty of boutiques and shops to explore if the weather is not great.

Table Of Contents
  1. Know before you go! Our top Edinburgh travel tips
  2. Weather in Edinburgh
  3. Things to do in Edinburgh with a teenager
  4. Free things to do in Edinburgh with teens
  5. Day trips from Edinburgh with teens
  6. Fun restaurants in Edinburgh for teens
  7. Frequently asked questions about Edinburgh
  8. Where are the best places to stay in Edinburgh with teens
  9. Author bio:

Know before you go! Our top Edinburgh travel tips

Travelling to Edinburgh with teens can be such an enriching experience for the whole family, and Edinburgh is one of the top family destinations in Europe. Did you know that Edinburgh was the first city in the world to have its own fire service?

There are so many things to do in Edinburgh, and having information on the best place to stay, how to get around, which currency to use and more is extremely important. Below you will find some information for planning a hassle-free family vacation in Edinburgh, Scotland.

Where to stay in Edinburgh with teenagers

Great vacations with teens start with some great vacation planning. When you are planning a trip to Scotland with teens, you’ll never be short of options for your family’s accommodation in Edinburgh.

In Edinburgh, you find a range of hotels, apartments, and hostels for families on holiday in Scotland. You will be sure to be able to find something to fit singles, couples, families, and groups on every budget on your family trip to Scotland.

If you’re not keen on any of our picks below or have specific needs for your teen travel holidays, we recommend using Expedia and Trip Advisor to find the best prices in Scotland for your family vacation to the United Kingdom.

  • Budget: Located in the centre of the city, right near Edinburgh Castle. This roomy hostel has a large kitchen and multiple lounges, giving you plenty of space and self-catering options. Search pictures and reviews of Castle Rock Hostel.
  • Mid Range: With stylish rooms and onsite parking, the Haymarket Hub Hotel is a great choice for your Edinburgh Hotel. With public transport options right out front and a pub next door, it is an excellent choice for your stay.
  • Luxury: The Waldorf Astoria Edinburgh has suites to suit families on vacation in Scotland. Located near Edinburgh’s old town, the hotel features 3 restaurants, an indoor pool, a day spa, a 24-hour front desk, a tourist desk and more. See pictures and reviews of this great hotel.

Edinburgh apartment alternative for your stay

If you prefer a home away from home-style accommodation when on your Scotland trip with teenagers in Edinburgh, then an apartment is the best choice for you on your family vacation. There are so many options for singles, families, and budget-friendly options in Edinburgh as well.

You can search VRBO or if you’re looking for a luxury apartment then Plum Guide will help you find the perfect apartment in Edinburgh for teens on your Scotland trip with family.

How to get to Edinburgh

Edinburgh is one of the best family destinations in Great Britain for family travel with teens. Edinburgh is the capital of Scotland and is connected by major highways, long distant buses, trains, and planes all bringing people daily to the city.

This makes Edinburgh one of the easiest family travel destinations to get to in Europe. Edinburgh is one of the best family destinations in the United Kingdom for family travel with teens.

  • Edinburgh Airport is located 9 kilometres from the city centre. The airport is serviced by international carriers such as Air France, and Air Canada and budget carriers such as EasyJet and Ryanair. Search your flights to Edinburgh with Kiwi Flights.
  • Edinburgh can be reached directly from 6 cities and indirectly from anywhere across Scotland, England and Wales. Flixbus tickets are available at great prices. Bus travel with teens in Scotland can add so many wonderful experiences for teens on vacation. Book your bus tickets to Edinburgh with Flixbus
  • If you plan to road trip with teenagers in Scotland you can hire a car at any International airport and dealership across The United Kingdom. Book with Rentalcars for the largest options
  • Maybe you want to make a trip cross-country? An RV is a great way to travel to Edinburgh with teens.

How to get around Edinburgh Scotland

Edinburgh is serviced by an efficient and reliable public transport network. Buses run 24 hours a day and are extremely frequent around the city centre and suburbs of Edinburgh.

Edinburgh Tram has one route that connects York Place with Edinburgh Airport. The route has 15 stops, all of which are wheelchair accessible.

Weather in Edinburgh

The weather in Scotland is often grey and wet sometimes making it hard to do things for teenagers in Edinburgh. July is the hottest month in Edinburgh with an average temperature of 15°C (59°F).

You will not need to break out the sunscreen when doing things in Scotland with teenagers. The coldest month is January at 3°C (37°F), be sure to bring a coat and travel umbrella.

A teenage girl in Edinburgh with an umberella in a rain shower
Teens in Edinburgh avoiding the rain

In August, you will get 10 hours of sunshine on average, while the wettest month is October with an average of 80mm of rain. The best time to visit Edinburgh with kids is the summer and shoulder months around summer.

Seasonal essentials for travel to Edinburgh

Edinburgh for international visitors

International travel to the Scottish capital requires a bit more thought. You will need travel insurance for sure in Edinburgh and Scotland. Medical care is not cheap and if you want good quality care it will cost you a fortune if you don’t have travel insurance. The official currency of Scotland is The British Pound.

If you use your bank account from home, you will be stung with high transaction fees, while your mobile phone calls will all be charged at an internation rate. These are just some of the things you need to think about,

  • For International travellers, travel insurance is a must get a quote through Insurance Masters, and don’t go home with a huge bill for medical expenses.
  • Do you need a visa to visit Edinburgh? The country of Scotland may require you to have a visa or an ETA ( Electronic travel authorization) to enter the country. You can check and buy these documents at iVisa.
  • Load a Revolut Travel Money card with Great British Pounds dollars for your visit and save on transaction fees
  • Make phone calls with an international sim card that you can buy before leaving home or buy a voucher for a virtual e-sim for your mobile phone.
  • A 4G pocket Wi-Fi modem is essential for accessing the internet. You can rent a pocket modem that you can pick up at the airport or your hotel, alternatively buy a pocket modem that you can use on all future trips with your phone, tablet or computer.

Travel accessories for teenagers

For teenagers, travelling can be a fun and exciting experience. However, there are a few things that they need to take into account in order to make the trip as comfortable and safe as possible. One of these is ensuring that they have the necessary travel accessories.

Get the Edinburgh Pass

Looking for a hassle-free way to explore the city? Look no further than the Edinburgh Pass! With this pass, you’ll have free access to more than 30 top attractions and discount entries to many more. It’s good for 1, 2, or 3 consecutive days, and is activated the first time you use it.

Edinburgh Dungeon, Camera Obscura, Edinburgh Zoo, Dynamic Earth and many more. So why wait? Book your Edinburgh Pass today and discover the best of Edinburgh with ease and convenience

Things to do in Edinburgh with a teenager

Now that we have covered all the essential Scotland travel tips for families, here are all the very best things to do in Edinburgh with teenagers.

Edinburgh Castle

If you’re visiting Edinburgh, a stop at Edinburgh Castle is a must. The castle is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Scotland, and for good reason – it’s packed full of history. The crown jewels are on display, as well as the Stone of Destiny and the famous One O’Clock Gun.

Edinburgh Castle on a hill in the middle of the city
The striking Edinburgh Castle

The castle was first built in the 12th century and has been modified and expanded over the years. It’s now home to the Scottish Crown Jewels, which include the Honours of Scotland – the crown, sceptre, and sword.

The Stone of Destiny was also kept at Edinburgh Castle until 1996 when it was moved to Westminster Abbey.

Another highlight is the One O’Clock Gun, which is fired every day at 1 p.m. except Sunday, and take a stroll in the adjacent Princes Street gardens.

Things to do in Edinburgh for teens – Ghost Bus Tour

Edinburgh is known for its haunted attractions and tours. One of the most popular is the ghost bus tour. This tour takes visitors to some of the most haunted locations in Edinburgh and provides entertainment through stories of ghosts and haunting.

One of the most popular stops on the ghost bus tour is Greyfriars Kirkyard, which is said to be home to a number of ghosts, including Mackenzie Poltergeist. Other locations visited on the ghost bus tour include Holyrood Palace and Edinburgh Castle.

Greyfriars Kirkyard

Greyfriars Kirkyard is a cemetery located in Edinburgh, Scotland. It is said to be haunted by the ghost of a monk who was killed there centuries ago. Visitors have reported seeing his ghost wandering through the cemetery and hearing his screams late at night.

There are also tales of other ghosts haunting the kirkyard, including a little girl who was killed by her father and a dog that was chained to a gravestone.

Some people believe that the cemetery is cursed and that anyone who dies there will never find peace. You can wander the Cemetery by yourself, or the best choice is to do a tour of Greyfriars Kirkyard.

You will hear all the stories and tales when doing a tour of Greyfriars Kirkyard, it is a spooky Edinburgh attraction full of Scottish history.

Read more: 10 exciting adventure activities in Scotland for teenagers

Things to do with teenagers in Edinburgh – Arthurs Seat

If you’re looking for a great view of Edinburgh, look no further than Arthur’s Seat. This hill is located in the middle of the city and provides stunning views of the skyline.

2 people sitting on top of arthurs seat in Edinburgh Scotland
Teens in Edinburgh will enjoy the views from Arthur’s Seat

You can reach the top of Edinburgh Arthur’s seat by walking, biking, or driving. If you choose to walk, be prepared for a steep climb, but it’s definitely worth it when you reach the top.

There are several paths that lead up to Arthur’s Seat, so you can choose the one that best suits your abilities on these types of holiday adventures. Once you’re there, take some time to enjoy the panoramic view of Scotland’s capital city.

Chocolatarium tour, tasting & chocolate making

Now what teens don’t like chocolate? This may be the sweetest of things to do in Edinburgh with a teenager. Taste chocolates from all over the world, including, fine single-origin, camel milk chocolate, and spicy chilli.

Learn about the history of Chocolate make your own chocolate bar in the Chocolate kitchen and sample chocolates from Scottish chocolate. Book this experience for the sweet tooth in your family.

Edinburgh Hop-on hop-off bus

The Edinburgh hop on hop off bus is always popular with family travellers. A sightseeing bus tour in Edinburgh is a great way to give you an overview of the city.

The popular hop on hop off bus in Edinburgh
Hop on hop off bus tour with Bedlam Theatre on background

The bus route takes you to all the Edinburgh attractions, so you can see everything from the historic buildings on The Royal Mile, The National Museum of Scotland to the Palace of Holyrood.

This tour bus allows you to get out and visit all the top Edinburgh attractions and hop back on the next bus when it appears. Book your seat today.

Have a food experience with a local

How do you make the best teenage family vacations? Food! Some teens cook some teens get served, so why not take a cooking class or eat with a local family on your family vacation to Edinburgh?

Maybe experience what the locals eat or take any number of different cooking classes in your city of choice. Food plays a big part in local cultures, whether it be cooking it, or eating it. Search and book your Edinburgh food experience.

 the enchanting essence of Edinburgh, Scotland
You will find many Harry Potter-associated attractions for teenagers in Edinburgh

A touch of Hollywood in Edinburgh for teenagers

The city of Edinburgh is associated with Hollywood favourite Harry Potter and the TV Show Outlander. In recent years, movies such as Avengers Infinity Wars and Eurovision the movie have been filmed in the city. This association has spawned many tours and experiences inspired by TV and movies.

Harry Potter Magical Guided Walking Tour

Visiting Edinburgh teens will enjoy a fully guided tour that will take you around the city that was JK Rowling’s inspiration for Hogwarts. Discover the place where she wrote the books. Find out which Hogwarts House you’re in, and whether you’re a pure-blood, a muggle, or a squib.

Have your Harry Potter trivia tested with an audio-visual quiz, and earn points for your house. Visit the Grave of Tom Riddle in Greyfriars Kirkyard, and pass JK Rowling’s golden handprints outside City Chambers. See all this and more on a magical guided tour.

Small Group Edinburgh Outlander Experience

Your expert tour guide will take you to the historic Old Town, where Claire & Jamie’s story was made: Tolbooth Jail, Canongate Kirkyard and the World’s End Tavern. You’ll have the opportunity to visit some of the sites from the books Dragonfly in Amber and Voyager, and you will hear Diana Gabaldon’s descriptions of their travels. This small personal Highlander tour in Edinburgh has a maximum of 18 people on the tour.

JK Rowling’s Harry Potter Walking Tour in Edinburgh

This Harry Potter walking tour takes you to all of the spots in Edinburgh associated with Harry Potter. Walk past key sites that inspired places such as Diagon Alley, see where Lord Voldemort is buried, and the original Hogwarts school. Hear fun facts about Harry Potter and more on this 2-hour* Harry Potter Walking Tour of Edinburgh.

Outlander Adventure Day Tour

This day tour out of Edinburgh takes you to a number of Outlander sights. You will explore the fictional town of Cranesmuir, visit Claire’s herb garden, see the Outlander Castle Leoch with an audio guide tour, explore the fictional headquarters of Jack Randall and get photos at Jamie’s lovely Lallybroch home. This tour is a must for any Outlander fans visiting Edinburgh with teenagers. See pictures and reviews of this great Outlander tour from Edinburgh.

Rosslyn Chapel – Da Vinci Code

Rosslyn Chapel is a chapel located in the village of Roslin, Midlothian, Scotland. It is about 11 miles south of Edinburgh. The chapel is best known for its appearance in the novel The Da Vinci Code and its subsequent film adaptation, where it is depicted as a location of secret religious ceremonies. However, its history dates back much further than that.

The chapel was founded in the early 15th century by William Sinclair, 1st Earl of Caithness as a place of worship for the Knights Templar. The Sinclair family were among the most prominent supporters of the Templars in Scotland. Visit Rosslyn Chapel on your Edinburgh trip.

captivating view of Midhope Castle in Scotland
A castle for the hit TV show Outlander

Fun things to do in Edinburgh – Underground ghost tour

If you’re looking for spine-tingling things to do in Edinburgh for teenagers, look no further than Edinburgh’s underground ghost tour. This attraction is perfect for adults and teenagers in Edinburgh, offering up a night of spooky fun and excitement.

As you explore the dark nooks and crannies of the city’s underground, you’ll be treated to spine-chilling stories of ghosts and ghouls that are said to haunt the area. Be sure to bring your camera, as you’re sure to snap some eerie photos! See the Ghosts of Edinburgh on your trip.

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Camera Obscura and the World of Illusions

When you enter the Camera Obscura and World of Illusions in Edinburgh, you are transported to a world of optical illusions and curiosities. This unique attraction is filled with interactive games, optical illusions, and hands-on exhibits that will amaze and amuse you.

One of the most popular exhibits is the Vortex Tunnel, an immersive experience that uses lights and sounds to disorient you as you walk through it. Other highlights include the Ames Room, where objects appear to shrink or grow depending on where you stand, and the Mirror Maze, a classic attraction that is sure to baffle and delight.

With so much to see and do, the Camera Obscura and World of Illusions is a must-visit for anyone visiting Edinburgh. Whether you’re a child or an adult, there’s something here for everyone to enjoy.

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Real Mary King’s close

The Real Mary King’s Close is an underground attraction located in the heart of Edinburgh’s Old Town. It is a series of narrow streets and houses that were once part of the city’s bustling trade and commerce.

Visitors can take a guided tour of the close and learn about its fascinating history, including the lives of the people who lived and worked there during the 17th and 18th centuries. The tour provides a glimpse into the daily life of the close residents, including their living conditions, hygiene, and superstitions.

The experience is both educational and entertaining, and it’s a unique way to explore Edinburgh’s hidden history

Edinburgh activities for teenagers – Edinburgh Dungeons

One of the most popular things to do in Scotland with teenagers is the Dungeons. The Edinburgh Dungeons follows the successful formula of the other Dungeon sites across Europe and the UK.

The concept is half history and half horror as you are taken through the gory history of Edinburgh on a 1-hour experience with actors, lighting displays, props and much more. The Edinburgh Dungeon is a highly popular attraction in cities worldwide. Book your Edinburgh Dungeon ticket today.

Things to do in Edinburgh with teenage girls – High Tea

What could be more quintessentially British than a high tea? This afternoon tradition involves savoury sandwiches, cakes pastries, and of course, tea.

For mothers and daughters, it’s a cherished ritual that often brings them closer together. High tea first became popular in the early 1800s, when aristocrats would gather in the late afternoon for a light meal.

cups of tea, cakes, sandwiches at a High Tea in Edinburgh
An afternoon High Tea is one of the many things for teenagers to do in Edinburgh

The spread would typically include cakes, tea, and sandwiches. These days, high tea is enjoyed by many Britons as a special treat. If you’re looking to experience high tea firsthand, there are plenty of places to go in the United Kingdom.

But be warned – it can be quite addictive! Once you’ve had a taste of those delicious treats, you’ll likely want to indulge again and again.

There are many places in Edinburgh to have afternoon tea, you can even have afternoon tea on a bus. We recommend the following places for the best High Tea in Edinburgh, Prestonfield House, Browns Edinburgh and Scott’s on Princes Street.

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What to do in Edinburgh with teenagers? Play footgolf

A relatively new sport, footgolf is gaining popularity worldwide. This game combines the skills of football and golf, the objective is to kick the ball into the hole in as few kicks as possible.

Footgolf is played with soccer balls instead of clubs and uses your feet instead of your hands to kick the ball into the hole. This is certainly a fun thing to do in Edinburgh with the whole family. In Edinburgh, you can play footgolf at Vogrie Golf Course.

Things to do in Edinburgh when it is raining – Holyrood Castle

Holyrood Castle in Edinburgh is one of Scotland’s most popular tourist destinations. The castle was the home of Mary, Queen of Scots, and is now a museum open to the public.

The inside of Holy rood castle
Some amazing interiors you can see at Holyrood Palace

The castle has a long and fascinating history, and visitors can learn about its past through exhibits and guided tours. Holyrood also offers stunning views of Edinburgh and the surrounding countryside. Arrive with Holyrood tickets ready to enter.

Paintball in Edinburgh

Paintball is a fast-paced game that involves running around, shooting opponents with paintballs, and trying to avoid being hit. The paintballs are spherical pellets made of synthetic rubbers or gelatin that are designed to break when they come into contact with something or you.

Most courses have abandoned huts and vehicles and other obstacles littered across the course. In Edinburgh, you can get your family adventure on, at Nation Wide Paintball.

Nation Wide Paintball has both indoor and outdoor paintball locations making it one of the fun things to do in Edinburgh for teens.

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Things to do in Edinburgh with kids – Scavenger hunt

If you are looking for great vacations with teen ideas, then look no further than a family scavenger hunt. There are quite a few different scavenger hunts to do in Edinburgh for families. Instead of a traditional sightseeing tour, get to know Edinburgh in a unique way with a scavenger hunt.

On your hunt, you will discover both popular and lesser-known sights of the city as you solve clues and tackle challenges to complete the adventure. Scavenger hunts are completely unique things to do in Edinburgh with teenyboppers.

Coasteering Adventure at Shell Bay near Edinburgh

Looking for outdoor Edinburgh activities for teenagers? An amazing outdoor adventure for visiting teens in Edinburgh is Coasteering.

a group of teenagers near Edinburgh walking along a coastal cliff
Things to do for teens in Edinburgh outdoors should include coasteering

Coasteering is a fun, adventure activity that combines elements of cliff jumping, swimming, and hiking. It can be done in an ocean, sea, or bay area. Coasteering is perfect for those who love the thrill of adventure and want to explore the coastline in a new way.

This great activity at Shell Bay offers the perfect amount of swell which gives smooth entries whilst jumping. For more information, pictures, reviews and booking click here.

Watch a football match in Edinburgh

There are two football clubs in Edinburgh, Hearts and Hibernian. They both play in the Scottish Premier League. Try and catch a match where Hearts and Hibernian play each other, or when they play Old Firm Rivals Celtic or Rangers from Glasgow.

The Scottish Premier League runs from September through May every year. Hearts play matches at Tynecastle Stadium and Hibernian play matches at Easter Road in Leith.

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National Museum of Scotland

The National Museum of Scotland is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Edinburgh. It is also one of the largest museums in the United Kingdom.

display hall in the National Museum of Scotland
National Museum of Scotland

The museum has a rich history and is home to many interesting exhibits, including a large collection of Scottish art and a variety of historical artefacts.

You will find sections dedicated to Scottish technology, which is popular with teenagers. One of the highlights of a visit to the National Museum of Scotland is its magnificent architecture.

Silent Disco in Edinburgh

If you’re looking for fun and unique things to do in Edinburgh, Scotland, look no further than a silent disco tour in Edinburgh.

You, your family and your friends can explore the city while listening and dancing to great tunes on a hi-tech headset in a group environment. A Silent Disco is a perfect way to let loose and have a great time.

Silent discos are becoming increasingly popular with teenagers in Edinburgh. They provide a safe and enjoyable environment for young people to enjoy themselves as their inhibitions evaporate and you have fun on the best all-dancing, all-singing walking tour in town.

You’re guaranteed to have a great time on a truly fun and unique experience in Edinburgh. Book your silent disco experience today

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Get Event tickets for Edinburgh attractions and activities

For concerts, theatre, stage shows and sporting events search Ticketmaster. Ticketmaster is an online marketplace for live entertainment events such as concerts, sporting events and more. Search the Ticketmaster box below for a special event when you are on vacation in Edinburgh with teenagers.

The Royal Yacht Britannia – Edinburgh with teenagers

The Royal Yacht Britannia is a former royal yacht of Queen Elizabeth II and the royal family, which is now a popular tourist attraction in Edinburgh, Scotland.

Located in the Ocean Terminal shopping centre, visitors can explore the yacht and learn about its history and royal connections.

The Royal yacht Britannia moored in Edinburg
One of the top attractions in Edinburgh

The self-guided tour takes visitors through the five main decks of the yacht, including the State Apartments, the Crew’s Quarters, and the Engine Room. The audio guide provides fascinating insights into the yacht’s history and the daily life of the royal family on board.

The most Instagramable places in Edinburgh

The best family vacations for teens always incorporate something they love. Social media is important to travel teens, and Instagram is one of the most popular photo apps for teens on holiday.

With Instagram and social media playing a significant part in the lives of travelling teenagers, we have some great places for Instagram photos in Edinburgh.

The view from Calton Hill looking towards Edinburgh Castle in the winter with snow on the ground
There are so many great sights in Edinburgh for Instagram pictures

We recommend visiting Arthur’s Seat, Edinburgh Castle and Calton Hill for the best Instagram shots in Edinburgh. Alternatively, book yourself, an Instagram tour with a guide who will take you to all the hotspots in the city. Check prices on the best Instagram tour in Edinburgh.

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Professional photoshoot in Edinburgh

As our kids get older, we spend less and less time with them making family travel memories. One excellent way to capture some of these important family vacations with teenage moments is to hire a professional photographer.

In a few short hours, a photographer will make some lifelong memories for you on your family vacation with teens in Scotland.

Victoria Street in Edinburgh is known for its colorful house
Victoria Street, Edinburgh

The photographer will supply everything, your family just needs to provide the smiles for your Edinburgh with Teenagers photoshoot. Book an unforgettable family travel memory today and secure your family travel photoshoot.

Street Art in Edinburgh

Street art is found throughout the world, but it is especially prevalent in major cities. Cities are home to a wealth of street art, from graffiti on building walls to pieces painted on lanes and bridges.

Street art provides a unique aesthetic for these places, with topics including current events, pop culture, portraits and more.

The Cowgate area, located in the Old Town, is home to several stunning street art pieces of Urban street art.

The Leith neighbourhood, located in the north of the city, also has a vibrant street art scene, with several murals and graffiti pieces decorating the streets.

The Scottish capital’s street art scene is constantly evolving, with new pieces appearing regularly, making it a dynamic and exciting part of the city to explore.

Things to do in Edinburgh at night with kids – 10 Pin Bowling

If you’re looking for a bit of fun, friendly family competition in Edinburgh with kids then 10-pin bowling might be just the best family activity for you and your teen travellers.

You can go 10-pin bowling in Edinburgh at a number of different locations in the city centre, and 10-pin bowling has to be one of the best family-friendly things to do in Edinburgh with teenagers. 

Most bowling alleys these days are more entertainment centres featuring amusement, food, and drink options. You will find some of the best bowling locations in Edinburgh below.

  • Tenpin Edinburgh Fountain Park – bowling alleys, a licensed bar, pool tables and computer game arcades at Fountain Park, Dundee St, Edinburgh EH11 1AW, United Kingdom
  • World Of Bowling – 10 New Market Rd, Edinburgh EH14 1RJ, United Kingdom

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Axe Throwing in Edinburgh for Young Adults

Axe Throwing is a new phenomenon that is sweeping around the world. Edinburgh is home to Black Axe Throwing Co.

No experience is required, as the staff at Black Axe Edinburgh will run you through the safety precautions before giving tips and hints on how best to throw an axe.

An axe hitting the target in Edinburgh
Axe throwing is one of the fun things to do in Edinburgh for young adults

If you are looking for unique things to do in Edinburgh for teens, then axe throwing could be it. Axe Throwing is one of the awesome things to do in Edinburgh on your family vacation. See more pictures and reviews of axe throwing in Edinburgh.

Edinburgh things to do with teenagers – Bike riding

Teenager vacations need to be action-packed! Edinburgh bike riding is a popular family activity when travelling with teenagers. Bike riding allows you to experience your location, either in town or out in the surrounding areas.

You will find Edinburgh bike tours are the best way to go if you want to get an up-close and personal experience of the city on your holiday with teens.

You will either have a tour guide to point out all the important attractions in Edinburgh or a map to follow. The Edinburgh bike tours will take you on a family vacation 2-wheeled adventure. Alternatively, you can find locations that hire bikes and let you explore Edinburgh on your own. Plan an Edinburgh bike tour today.

Family holidays in Edinburgh – Going to the cinema

Great vacations with teens have a mix of everything! Watching a movie is popular with teenagers anywhere in the world. Going to the cinema in Edinburgh with teenagers is a great evening activity. You will find state-of-the-art screens and sound for you to watch the latest blockbusters in Edinburgh cinemas.

In Edinburgh, you will find multiplex, Imax, 3D and speciality cinemas showing art-house and indie films. A cinema is one of the best places to visit in Edinburgh at night with teens. You can use this Trip Advisor guide to the best cinemas in Edinburgh.

Escape rooms in Edinburgh for older kids

For those new to Escape rooms, this is a quick run down. An escape room, also known as an escape game, is a physical adventure game in which players solve a series of puzzles and riddles using clues, hints, and strategies to complete the objectives at hand.

Escape rooms may consist of a large, single room, or span multiple rooms. Players have a set time limit to unveil the secret plot which is hidden within the rooms.

If your travelling teen likes this stuff, it is definitely one of the top things to do in Edinburgh with teenagers. You can find 2 of the best Edinburgh Escape rooms below.

Discover more: Tried and tested tips to make your vacations with teens enjoyable for the whole family

Going to the gym in Edinburgh for older kids

Fitness is very important to a lot of teenagers these days, and being on a family vacation in Scotland is no reason to miss a session. Working out is a big part of a healthy lifestyle.

Just because one is travelling, that does not mean you need to stop working out. In Edinburgh, you can go to a number of gyms that sell passes ranging from a day to a week and a month. 

Shopping in Edinburgh with teens

There is nothing worse than lost luggage on a family trip to Scotland, or not having the appropriate clothing for your family vacation to Edinburgh.

Below we have included some travel tips for families on where to shop in Edinburgh for teens if you find you need to or if you just want to do some shopping in Edinburgh with teenagers.

Edinburgh, Scotland, is a shopper’s paradise. There are many boutiques and small shops, as well as several large shopping malls and a department store. For souvenirs, there are several places to shop, including The Royal Mile and Princes Street.

New to Edinburgh is the four-story St James Shopping Centre opened in 2021 and features stores such as Calvin Klein, H&M, JD Sport and Lego just to name a few.

Princes Street is Edinburgh’s most prominent shopping street, with several department stores, including Jenner’s and international brands such as Levis, Urban Outfitters and more.

George Street, which runs parallel to Prince Street, offers a great selection of boutiques and high-end stores such as Hally Hansen and GANT.

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Free things to do in Edinburgh with teens

Edinburgh offers, some of the best free things to do with your teenage family members. These free city activities are perfect for keeping everyone happy and entertained without having to spend any money.

There are also plenty of affordable restaurants and shops where you can shop for souvenirs without breaking the bank. Some of our recommendations for free activities in Edinburgh for families are as follows.

Meet Angus the best tour guide in Edinburgh, do a free walking tour with Angus

Day trips from Edinburgh with teens

While staying in the city with teenagers on your family holiday may be the easiest option on your family vacation, there are some fun day trips for teenagers from Edinburgh to make out of the city too.

The best vacations for teenagers usually include at least one day trip from Edinburgh.
Below we have a couple of day trips from Edinburgh recommendations for families travelling with teenagers. There are also so many more things to do on your vacation with teenagers when you add a day trip from Edinburgh.

Loch Ness & Highlands full-day trip

If you’re looking for a picturesque day trip from Edinburgh, the Scottish Highlands are the perfect place to go.

awe-inspiring view of Loch Ness in Scotland teenagers will love
The calm water of Loch Ness, could it be hiding something?

The area is known for its dramatic landscapes and lochs (lakes), including Loch Ness, which is said to be home to the legendary Loch Ness Monster.

There are plenty of things to do in the Highlands, from hiking and biking trails to boat tours of the lochs. In addition, there are charming towns and villages worth exploring, such as Pitlochry and Fort William.

Loch Lomond, Stirling Castle & Kelpies Tour

Spend a day experiencing the natural beauty of Loch Lomond including a short boat cruise, and explore the pretty villages of Aberfoyle and Loch Lomond Shores.

Investigate Stirling Castle atop craggy Castle Hill, rich in history with tales of Mary, Queen of Scots, William Wallace, and Robert the Bruce and stand in awe at the kelpies on this day tour from Edinburgh.

The Kelpies, 2 giant horse statues in Scotland
There are many great things to do near Edinburgh on your family holiday

This 9-hour tour from Edinburgh is a must to see that wee bit more of Scotland. There are so many things to do near Edinburgh that one can do.

Camping with teens? Here are our top camping with teen tips, tricks and hacks

Fun restaurants in Edinburgh for teens

Vacationing with teens absolutely needs to include a brilliant meal to remember the family holiday. Family travel with teenagers is a wonderful thing, and bonding over a meal at the end of the day or even during it is a great way to connect with your teen travellers. Having a meal with family is one of the top things to do in Edinburgh with teenagers.

Hard Rock Cafe Edinburgh

Hard Rock Cafe is one of those fun venues that mixes music, sports and good food, just the sort of place that a teen in Edinburgh will love.

You will sit among memorabilia from rock legends including Elvis, Ringo Starr, Jimi Hendrix and AC/DC. The cafe currently has over 120 pieces of priceless music memorabilia on display!

You can pre-book Gold or Diamond menu options and enjoy fresh, high-quality items, including a mouth-watering selection of Legendary Burgers.

Additionally, Hard Rock’s Smokehouse Menu uses the very best Hickory wood chips to slowly cook its ribs, chicken, and pork to juicy, tender perfection. Click here for food options and book a seat at Hard Rock Edinburgh.

Oink in Edinburgh

Oink has 3 locations in Edinburgh where you can get an amazing pulled pork roll. Each location does a whole pig on a spit every day and serves roast pork rolls until the pig is gone.

The rolls are stuffed full of pork and filled with a stuffing of Sage and onion or our own homemade haggis and topped with sauces including apple, homemade mustard mayo, homemade BBQ, homemade chilli cheese, or homemade chilli jam.

Seating is limited at Oink, so you may have to grab a takeaway roll.

Street food in Edinburgh

Street food is a popular way to eat in many parts of the world. It’s a quick and easy way to get some delicious local food without having to go to a full restaurant. Street food can be found in many different styles and options.

Some of the most well-known street foods include tacos in Mexico, Zapiekanka in Poland, Dan Dan noodles in China, and Shawarma in Middle Eastern countries. Street food in Scotland often has its origins in the cultural history of people who have immigrated to the country in the past.

The food trucks and stalls can be found at various locations throughout the city, including the popular weekly street food market in the Old Town. Visitors can sample a range of delicious food and cuisines from around the world, including Scottish haggis, Middle Eastern falafel, and Indian curry.

Local specialties such as fish and chips, Scotch pies, and deep-fried Mars bars are also popular options. Street food is a great way to experience the local culture and flavours of Edinburgh and is perfect for a quick and tasty meal on the go.

Frequently asked questions about Edinburgh

There are so many frequently asked questions about Edinburgh, especially from families travelling with teenagers. Edinburgh is one of the best family city breaks in Great Britain and one of the best places to vacation with teenagers.

There are so many things to consider when you are planning your family vacation to Scotland.

Here is a list of some of the most frequently asked questions about the city to help you make your family vacation to Edinburgh easy and hassle-free.

What is the legal drinking age for teens in Edinburgh?

18 is the legal drinking age but 16 and 17-year-olds can legally drink beer, wine or cider when ordering food in the pub.

Is Edinburgh safe for a family vacation?

Edinburgh is a very safe city. It’s generally safe to walk around at night, but make sure to know where you’re going. Exercise caution for pickpockets in tourist areas on your Edinburgh teen’s holiday.

How do I call the police in Edinburgh?

Contact the police by calling 999 to report emergencies or by calling 101 for non-emergencies.

Is tipping required in the United Kingdom?

Tipping is not expected in Britain the way it is in some other countries. Workers don’t officially have to rely on their tips to live, and all staff in the UK must be paid the National Minimum Wage.

Can you drink tap water in Edinburgh?

Edinburgh tap water is considered safe to drink. If you’re worried, you can buy a filtered water bottle for teens in Edinburgh.

What type of power plug is used in Scotland?

The standard voltage is 230 V and the standard frequency is 50 Hz. The 3 pin power plugs and sockets are type G. Buy your type G adaptor today before you visit Scotland

Where are the best places to stay in Edinburgh with teens

At the top of the article, we suggested some accommodation choices for your holiday in Edinburgh with the kids. If you are looking for a wider variety of choices for your family stay in Edinburgh please find below an interactive map from Booking.com for you to find your perfect stay for your Scotland vacation with adolescents.


Are you looking to book flights, hotels, apartments, tours, airport transfers, travel insurance and more for your vacation with young adults? Are you just not sure what travel companies you can trust to book your family travel online? We have a family travel resource page that is full of companies that we personally use, trust and book through for all our family vacation trips from a weekend away to long-term travel with older children around the world. Click here to search our travel resources page

We hope this article from us here at Wyld Family Travel has you inspired to visit Edinburgh with teenagers. There are so many things to do in Edinburgh with young adults that will have you entertained for your family’s whole stay in the city. 

Travelling with young adults has just as many issues as travelling with young children. Choosing the best teenage vacation destinations, what bags and suitcases to take, travel essentials and more can be so time-consuming. Planning family travel with teenagers and tweens can be stressful, and finding the best tips for travel is essential. 

Our Travel with Teenagers Destination Guides have you covered! With insights from around the globe, these guides will spark inspiration for your next family vacation, making it an epic adventure with your teens.

More travel inspiration for your trip to the United Kingdom

Author bio:

Father, husband, traveller, and chief destination manager here at Wyld Family Travel. When Mark is not talking about travel or planning travel you will find him working in disability support. Mark is a family travel advocate, having travelled to over 45 countries with his kids from 10 months old, through to their teenage years. You will find his work here and on other popular websites.

Having a beer in Pilsen Czech
Mark Wyld

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