Edinburgh England Planning a Trip travel guide

Getting from Liverpool to Edinburgh

Liverpool is very well known for being the home town of the Beatles. It also has a long football history and the nightlife is lively.

Edinburgh is the capital of Scotland. It is a very popular city among travelers of all ages thanks to the interesting sights, lively festivals and cuisine.

Quick summary

There isn’t a direct connection between the two cities. Buses remain the cheapest option although the travel time is about 9 hours. A faster option is the train but the fare is about double the bus fare.

Flights from Liverpool (airport code: LPL) to Edinburgh

Liverpool John Lennon Airport (LPL) is located about 12 km from the city center and handles domestic flights, as well as flights to other cities in Europe, North Africa and Middle East.

Edinburgh International Airport (EDI) is the busiest airport in Scotland and the sixth busiest in the UK. The airport is located about 10 km from the city center. The airport is not a hub for any airline. It handles flights within the UK, Europe and to North America and Africa.

Unfortunately there are no direct flights between the two cities. Flybe offers a flight via the Island of Man , with a total travel time of 6 h and single fares from £92 in mid-May 2012.

Read more about:
>>Cheap flights to Edinburgh
>>Cheap flights to Liverpool

Trains from Liverpool to Edinburgh

National Rail offers trains between Liverpool and Edinburgh but all require at least one connection. Trains depart Liverpool Lime Street station every hour. The connection is through Wigan North Western and the total travel time is 3 ½ h. The single fare is £62.50.

Buses from Liverpool to Edinburgh

Another overland option between Liverpool and Edinburgh is the bus.

National Express offers three departures per day from Liverpool, at 7:15 a.m., 11 a.m. and 10:15 p.m. But all require at least a change. If you choose the latest departure, the change is in Manchester and the travel time is 9 h 15 min. The single fare is £35.30. The price is the same for all three departures.

Driving from Liverpool to Edinburgh

You can rent a car in Liverpool and drive the 220 miles to Edinburgh on M6. The travel time is 4 hours but does depend on the traffic.

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Edinburgh England Planning a Trip travel guide

Getting from Manchester to Edinburgh

Edinburgh is the capital of Scotland and a very popular city among travelers of all ages. Whether you want to attend interesting festivals, enjoy the history and the sites or taste the “weird”-ish local cuisine, Edinburgh is the place to be.

Manchester is one of the major cities in England, with good connections to the rest of the country of continent. If you need to travel between Manchester and Edinburgh, there are plenty of options: plane, bus, train and car.

Quick summary

The cheapest option to get between Manchester and Edinburgh is the bus (fares from £11 one way). The fastest option is the plane but, of course, the fares are higher (but not higher than train fares).

Flights from Manchester (airport code: MAN) to Edinburgh

Manchester Airport (MAN) is the third busiest airport in the UK and the largest outside of London. It is hub for Flybe and handles flights within the UK, Europe, North America, Africa and the Middle East.

Edinburgh International Airport (EDI) is the busiest airport in Scotland and the sixth busiest in the UK. It is located about 10 km from the city center. While not a hub for any airline, the airport handles flights within the UK, Europe and to North America and Africa.

Flights between Manchester and Edinburgh are operated by BMI and Flybe. The flight time is an hour. In late May 2012, expect to pay from £45 one way on BMI. Slightly higher fares are available from Flybe. Similar prices are available for flights in mid-July 2012 (from £49 one way on the same carrier).

Read more about:
>>Cheap flights to Edinburgh
>>Cheap flights to Manchester

Trains from Manchester to Edinburgh

Direct trains connect Manchester Piccadilly station to Edinburgh’s station. The travel time is about 3 ½ h . There are departures every 2 to 3 hours daily. Single fares start at £59.90. You can also choose to change trains in York but the fare can be higher in some cases (and the travel time increases).

Details, schedules and prices can be found here .

Buses from Manchester to Edinburgh

Chorlton Street Coach Station serves Manchester and is located close to the city center. There are two companies to choose from when planning to travel between Manchester and Edinburgh:

  • National Express : there are several buses per day, the fastest one taking 6 h 20 min to get between the two cities. Single fares start at £31.40.

  • Megabus : offers two buses per day , leaving Manchester at 9 a.m. and 7:30 p.m. The travel time is about 5 ½ h and the single fare is £11.00.

Driving from Manchester to Edinburgh

You can rent a car in Manchester and drive the 216 miles to Edinburgh via M6. The travel time (estimated) is about 4 hours but does depend on the traffic.

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High Street Backpackers

entranceJust off the Royal Mile you will find High Street Backpackers, one of three hostels where you can buy your Macbackpacker Tours of Scotland. A good vibe is felt the minute you walk into the door, with friendly staff and a relaxed common room right by reception. The larger common room in the basement has a pool table and a stuffed Loch Ness Monster. Every other week there is a party of some kind, Thursday night you join Royal Mile and Castle Rock hostels on a pub crawl and Sunday nights there is a pool contest. On Fridays and Sundays the staff make burger and chips for £3.

With 152 beds set up in 4 to 18 bed dorms, be aware that there are no safety bars on the top bunks. High street also has a few private rooms with names like “Monica and Bill”, so there is something for everyone.


Royal Mile Backpackers

entranceHome of the Macbackpacker Tours and in partnership with the Castle Rock and High Street Backpackers, Royal Mile offers a small homey feel with great staff. Located in a prime location on the Royal Mile just down the way from Edinburgh Castle and surrounded by lots of pubs and restaurants, the door is a little inconspicuous so keep your eyes open. With only 46 beds you are sure to get to know everyone especially if you join the Thursday night pub crawls.

The dorm beds have just been raised to give guests more room for their bags, be aware that the top bunk has no safety bar, (they are in process of adding them), the shared bathrooms are a bit tight and the kitchen is almost non-existent. But it has everything you need at a good price, including just £1.90 for a continental breakfast. One of the novelties here is that the rooms are all named with things such as “Addictions”, “Star Wars” etc… so instead of having a number to remember you have a theme and your bed has a quirky label, I approved of the “chocolate addictions”.


Prince’s Street East Backpackers

entranceOne might normally assume that a hostel named after one of the main streets in Edinburgh would be located on it. However, this is not so, Prince’s Street East is located on a side alley behind the main drag and takes a little bit of exploring to find. Add to that the slightly scary looking alley that it is in and the dark, dingy entrance with a long twisty staircase and it almost made me want to run in the opposite direction. There is also the City Center Tourist Hostel located at about stair number 55, that adds to the confusion.

Climbing the 77 stairs to the top floor, the walls are brightly painted with amusing cartoons and you almost feel comfortable. The hostel itself is a maze of interconnecting rooms and amazing wall art, there are 100 beds and a strict age limit of 18-35 years. Free tea and coffee, book swap and a lost and found clothes bin are a few of the perks. On Sundays a guest is encouraged to cook up a feast in exchange for 4 free nights (the hostel pays for the food).

Edinburgh Planning a Trip Things to Do

Edinburgh: getting around by bus…ahh, I mean coach

By bus (coach)

The Edinburgh bus network is cheap, extensive and frequent making it the easiest and most cost effective way of navigating the city. Local bus companies offer daily tickets, which allow you unlimited travel in and around Edinburgh. You buy these tickets, and single journey tickets, on board the bus from the driver – remember that no change is given, so you’ll need the exact fare. Also remember to grab your single journey ticket from the red vending machine beside the driver. Otherwise you might be rewarded with an embarrassing mid-trip conversation with a grumpy ticket officer.

If you’re heading further beyond Edinburgh, you can buy your coach tickets for UK and Scottish travel from the bus station in St Andrew Square in advance. And if you’re heading to the airport a regular express service runs from Waverley Bridge to Edinburgh Airport, with pick up points along the way.

You can also take in the sights of the city on one of the many Edinburgh bus tours – City Bus Tour tickets can be bought in person at the Edinburgh and Scotland Information Centre, 3 Princes Street or on Waverley Bridge, which is where the tours start.

The following companies can provide more information

For travel in and around Edinburgh including Edinburgh Airport, city bus tours and night buses Lothian Buses contact number – 0131 555 6363

For Travel in and around Edinburgh, Central and The Borders
First Buses contact number – 08708 72 72 71

Edinburgh Travel Tips

Ed’s Beds: Caledonian backpackers hostel review

I came across The Caledonian Backpacker’s Hostel via the hostel world website. The hostel was described as the “funkiest hostel in Edinburgh” and I was attracted by the prospect of good times, the opportunity to meet other festival goers and the hostel’s central location, within viewing distance of the Edinburgh castle. If by funky they mean brightly coloured walls then yes. Despite being packed to full capacity however, there was little of the live music, social vibe and friendliness the website promised. Only regular nightly wakings from returning festival goers reminded me that outside the hostel walls the festival city was in full swing. Please people get some new lights in your bar. Make your staff smile. Give your booze away…anything to bring the bar to life! True to the hostelworld spiel the beds were clean and to the Caledonian’s credit they do have the cheapest internet in town (£1 per hour). The major turnoff for me was the staff though. I was walking on eggshells during my three weeks there trying to pick their moods, which ranged from disinterested to down-right obnoxioius with the occasional spasm of happiness! The effect of the staff was enough to dampen the mood of the guests, and it would put me off returning. When your paying £19 a night (festival time reates go up) and contemplating how you’re going to afford to eat next week, all the while drowning your sorrows in over-priced Guiness, you want your bar maid to smile. Nay, you need it. Sort it out Caledonian.

Rating 2.5/5 with the same staff; 3.5/5 after staff have personality transplants.

For alternatives, try Edinburgh Hostels.

For more information on hostels check out