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Stags are synonymous with Scotland, so what better place to celebrate your last night of freedom than the Scottish capital of Edinburgh? This historic city is home to some amazing pubs and activities. Make sure you’ve got your kegs on under your kilt, a night out celebrating with the Scots could get messy.
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Edinburgh is affectionately known as ‘Auld Reekie’, meaning ‘Old Smokey’ – a name given in the 17th century when the city’s fortification walls meant residents were forced to cohabit in a relatively small space, causing the smoke from chimneys (among other unpleasant things) to form a thick smog over the city. Fortunately today, the city no longer has a smog or smell problem and is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world… But the name stuck.
Edinburgh’s Old Town is made up of a maze of alleyways, cobbled streets and traditional Scottish pubs. For a proper night out, make sure you and the lads head to Frankenstein for a scarily good time. They have games, drinks, girls in stockings (lads in stockings), dancers and more! Old Town is full of surprises and is definitely a must-see on a visit to Edinburgh..
New Town is the chic, modern half of Edinburgh, where you’ll find upmarket bars, sleek lounges and cool nightclubs. Kick off your night out with a good steak at Miller and Carter on Frederick Street before heading to Milnes Bar, a traditional Scottish pub with good pints.
Southside is popular with students and has loads of fun bars for stags to sink a pint or two. The Dog House is a great place to kick off any night out in this vibrant part of the city, with quirky décor and a range of drinks to choose from, it’s sure to get you in the mood for a night of celebrating your last night of freedom.
Located to the west of the city, you’ll find Haymarket, which is home to loads of traditional Scottish pubs and bars. Head to Dalry Road and try out Ryrie’s bar, where you can enjoy haggis, neeps and tatties, closely followed by a dram of whiskey.
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Edinburgh’s not all castles and hills though, it also has a brilliant pub and bar scene, selling some of the best whisky you’ve ever had.
The Three Sisters
139 Cowgate, EH1 1JS
No stag in Edinburgh is complete without a visit to the Three Sisters pub, located in the Cowgate area of the city. This bar has a real lively vibe and welcomes stag dos with open arms. You need to try their Man Plank, a sharing board for a minimum of six people, which would easily feed double!
Opening Times: Monday - Wednesday: 07:00 – 01:00Thursday - Saturday: 07:00 - 03:00Sunday: 07:00 - 01:00
16 George Street, New Town, EH2 2PF
The award-winning Shanghai Club is one of Edinburgh’s premier clubbing experiences and is definitely one for the list on any night out. The oriental themed club has three distinct areas, each with their own charm – perfect for pleasing the lads.
Opening Times: Monday: CLOSEDTuesday: CLOSEDWednesday - Thursday: 22:30 – 03:00Friday: 22:30 - 03:30Saturday - Sunday: 22:30 - 03:00
The Liquid Room
9C Victoria St, EH1 2HE
If it’s live music that you’re after, then the Liquid Room is the place to head to. With a large stage setup and plenty of options for drinks, this is the best place to celebrate your upcoming nuptials with the lads, just don’t go starting one of them mosh pits, no one wants a black eye in the wedding photos.
Opening Times: Monday - Sunday: 23:00 – 03:00
73 Cowgate, EH1 1JW
Another live music venue that you don’t want to miss is Sneaky Pete’s. Described as 'buzzing with late-night music', if you’re looking for good music, blue cocktails and sweaty dancefloors in the Old Town, then Sneaky Pete’s is the place for you.
Opening Times: Monday - Sunday: 19:00 – 03:00
36-38 Blair St, EH1 1QR
This cool basement vault bar spans two floors and describes itself as 'a celebration of jiggery pokery'. We’re not sure what that means, but it sounds fun! Featuring local and international DJs each week, this club is sure to be a hit with the lads.
Opening Times: Monday: CLOSEDTuesday - Friday: 17:00 – 03:00Saturday: 13:00 - 03:00Sunday: 12:00 - 18:00
The Bongo Club
66 Cowgate, EH1 1JX
Banging tunes and class music awaits at Bongo, a Cowgate club popular with students. If you’re looking for something other than the typical chart music nightclub, then the Bongo Club could be just the place for you. This club is so popular, its own punters saved it from closure in 2012. N’aww.
Opening Times: Please check with the venue
125b George Street, EH2 4JN
If loud crowds and live music isn’t your thing, then Lulu bar may be more your cup of tea – Long Island Ice Tea that is. This stylish bar is located on the classy George Street and serves up decadent cocktails in chic surroundings. We recommend heading to their Lulu Saturday nights and getting one of their drinks packages, for the ultimate night out.
Opening Times: Monday: 22:30 – 03:00Tuesday - Wednesday: CLOSEDThursday - Friday: 22:30 - 03:00Saturday: 22:00 - 03:00Sunday: 22:30 - 03:00
The Voodoo Rooms
19a W Register St, EH2 2AA
For even more upmarket celebrations, head over to the Voodoo Rooms, where you’ll find a luxe leather bar and gilded gold accessories. Get yourself suited and booted and settle in to try one of Liquid Room’s decadent cocktails.
Opening Times: Monday - Sunday: 16:00 – 01:00
14 Forrest Rd, EH1 2QN
Another live music venue, but you can watch the footie in this one as well. McSorley’s is an Irish bar like no other. Great craic, great burgers and great music give this place an amazing vibe. The bar is split-level with huge screens everywhere, making it the perfect spot for a few pints to watch the match.
Opening Times: Monday - Sunday: 12:00 – 01:00
15-17 Niddry St, EH1 1LG
The Hive is a relaxed club playing a cool range of music. Sticky floors and cheap drinks should bring the nostalgia of uni days flooding back to you, as you knock back a few multi-coloured shots. The Hive is really popular, so it’s always best to get guest list, so you’re not waiting in the cold with the 19 year olds.
Opening Times: Monday - Friday: 22:00 – 03:00Saturday: 21:00 - 03:00Sunday: 22:00 - 03:00
Edinburgh isn’t just a tourist spot for people wanting to find a highland cow ornament, it has a vibrant pub and club scene, with a little something for every type of stag.
Edinburgh Rose Street Pub Crawl
Edinburgh's Most Haunted Bars
Edinburgh Old Town Bar Crawl
Edinburgh New Town Bar Crawl
Choose from literally hundreds of day and night-time Edinburgh stag activity ideas.
Auld Reekie has plenty to offer when it comes to things to do.
No stag do in Scotland is complete without donning a kilt, a tartan hat and taking part in a Highland Games tournament. Our Stag’s Mini Highland Games is one of our best-selling activities north of the border and will soon get your heart pumping with challenges such as tug o’ war and tossing the caber – basically chucking a giant tree trunk about.
Get filthy in a different sense with these white-knuckle dirt buggies. Navigate the off-road track full of twists and turns, as you and your mates go head-to-head on the muddy slopes of Scotland. These powerful 400cc buggies are not for the faint hearted and are sure to make your last night of freedom in Edinburgh one to remember.
Explore this historic city through its fun pub scene. You’ll be joined by other groups to really get the party atmosphere going as you’re guided around seven of the city’s best pubs before gaining entry to one of the many banging nightclubs. Best line your stomach for this one.
Get stuck into a stag favourite activity. Shoot your group with 100 paintballs from a semi-automatic inferno rifle. Spend 3 hours playing in multiple themed game zones and completing missions. The hosts will give you safety instructions, show you around the guns and areas to get you familiar before letting you go out and show everyone who’s boss.
Originating from Norway this activity has quickly become a firm favourite. Try to play football with a bubble around you. It’ll be hard to concentrate on the game for an hour when everyone bounces off each other and ends up on the floor laughing. But there are forfeits for red and yellow cards so be prepared to face the consequences for foul play.
If merely tasting whisky isn’t good enough, then take a tour of the Scotch Whisky Experience. A guided tour will take you through the process of whisky tasting step-by-step, as you learn the aromas and view the world’s largest collection of the good stuff, before tasting it for yourself.
Treat your stag to one last night of freedom he won’t forget. We work with some of the best butlerettes in the business. Gorgeous, sophisticated and ever so professional, the girls are happy to serve drinks and nibbles for you and your mates – they will even dress up if you have a novelty theme, such as the Wild West or ancient Greece.
What utter genius thought of combining the beautiful scenery of golf with the fun of football? An event co-ordinator will lead you through your 18-hole foot-golf session, with forfeits for hitting bunkers and water hazards and a trophy for the longest drive.
Get your hearts racing with this thrilling activity on the Tay River. Battle your way through grade 2 and 3 rapids which are fun, bouncy and challenging. Your professional instructor will show you the ropes and be with you all the way down the river. You will receive free professional photos of the event too.
3 is the magic number. Choose 3 activities from bubble football, disco dodgeball, goggle football, old school sports day and xtreme dodgeball. Spend 3 hours in an outdoor venue playing your chosen games. An event coordinator will go through the rules and be the ref for each. Who will win? Only one way to find out.
There’s plenty of accommodation options to choose from on a visit to Edinburgh. Whether you’re looking for a hostel to crash in, a hotel to get some sleep after a long day of drinking, or an apartment where you can keep the celebrations going, there’s something for everyone.
10 minutes walk from Princes Street
If you’re looking for accommodation close to the action, then the Playhouse Apartments are the place to be. With cosy furniture and flat screen TVs, this is a great place for chilling after a heavy night in the town.
Ideal location right bang in the middle of it!
These apartments come with all the mod cons you need for a comfortable stay in Edinburgh. The accommodation has contemporary furnishings and are light and airy, with lots of windows to provide a bright space. The lounge provides a comfortable social space and the kitchen has everything you need for that all important hangover brekkie.
1.6 miles from the city centre
Located between Edinburgh and the popular port of Leith, you’ll find the stylish Lochend Apartments. These 4-star apartments are fully furnished and come with options of either one or two bedrooms. Perfect for getting ready before a night out.
Just off the Royal Mile
For budget savvy stags, the Travelodge is an excellent choice. Located in Edinburgh’s Old Town, this hotel is close to the action and provides comfortable king-size beds for you to rest your head after a hard day of hitting the drams.
Centrally located just off the Royal Mile
When it comes to convenience, it doesn’t come much better that the Jurys Inn. Located a couple minutes’ walk from Edinburgh Waverley, it’s pretty much impossible to miss your train home, no matter how bad your hangover – we can confirm we have tested this theory.
Approximately 2.5 miles from the city centre
If you’re looking for somewhere quieter to call your base on your last night of freedom, you’ll find a peaceful night’s stay at the Village Hotel Club just north of the city. In addition to stylish rooms, the hotel also has a spa and a swimming pool, for ultimate relaxation.
Just 0.5 miles from the train station
Edinburgh is famous for its views and the Mercure on Princes Street provides the best of them in the city. Upgraded rooms offer uninterrupted views of the city’s castle and even a balcony where you can sip a beer or two before heading out. Nice.
Gorgeous Georgian building
Stay in the centre of Edinburgh, only a short walk away from Princes Street and the Playhouse Theatre is just across the road. This hotel is a refurbished Georgian building with modern rooms and a stylish lobby lounge. Each room can accommodate 2 people with free Wi-Fi, TV, great bathroom facilities and blackout blinds.
Close to train station and centre of town
This 3-star hotel is situated just 500 yards away from Haymarket train station. Piries Hotel provides spacious rooms for up to 3 people with a TV and Wi-Fi. There is also a breakfast buffet available for your stay. This hotel would suit groups who don’t want to travel far from the train station to check in. This hotel is also well located for great restaurants and shops in the city centre.
Next door to the Three Sisters Pub
This stylish hotel is based in the popular Cowgate area of the city, right next to one of Edinburgh’s most popular pubs – The Three Sisters. Each room is decked out in distressed wood and modern features, adding a touch of style to your last night of freedom in Edinburgh.
Edinburgh is steeped in history and has endless things to do, you’d have to live there to get round them all. Luckily, we’ve selected our top 10 picks of the best things to see and do in the beautiful city, so you can just sit back and relax.
Castlehill, Edinburgh EH1 2NG edinburghcastle.scot
You can’t go to Edinburgh and not visit its most iconic landmark. Hike to the top of the Royal Mile and you can view the castle in all its glory, as well as admiring the view of the city. In the 12th century, the castle was built on top of the strategic Castle Rock, but what they may not have known is, the rock was in in fact formed by a nearby volcano.
109 The Royal Mile Edinburgh EH1 1SG oldtown.org.uk
The Royal Mile runs between Edinburgh Castle and Holyrood Palace and leads off into smaller cobbled streets and twisted alleyways. There’s plenty to see and do along this famous mile (which technically isn’t a mile at all), as well as a few good pubs that you can stop off at along the way.
Edinburgh EH7 5AA ewh.org.uk/world-heritage-sites/calton-hill
Even if you’ve never heard of Calton Hill, you’ll be familiar with it. It is one of the most popular points to photograph the city from, often capturing the Dugald Stewart Monument in the forefront. Don’t forget to check out the unfinished National Monument, in remembrance to the fallen soldiers of the Napoleonic Wars.
154 High St, Edinburgh EH1 1QS freeghosttour.com
Take a walk on the spooky side and discover Edinburgh’s gruesome history. The city is one of the most haunted in the UK and for good reason. The Real Mary King’s Close, a street underneath the Royal Mile, is said to have been sealed up during the plague, entombing the dying victims inside.
Castlehill, Royal Mile, Edinburgh EH1 2ND camera-obscura.co.uk
For stag photos with a twist, head to Camera Obscura, where your perception of the world will be turned on its head… literally. This tourist attraction is definitely worth a visit and will provide you and the lads with some good laughs as you try to navigate the mirror maze and the Vortex Tunnel, which we call the ‘dizzy tunnel’ for good reason.
The Royal Mile, 354 Castlehill, Edinburgh EH1 2NE scotchwhiskyexperience.co.uk
A lesson on how to look at a glass of whisky and drink it? You might think it’s daft, but whisky tasting is an art form in itself and takes real skill to master. Refine your drinking prowess and get pissed like a gentleman in the whisky homeland itself.
31 Market Place, Edinburgh EH1 1DF thedungeons.com/edinburgh
Learn about Edinburgh’s dark history through the Edinburgh dungeons, a walk-through attraction that will see you meeting some of the city’s most nefarious characters. From infamous body snatchers turned murderers, Burke and Hare, to the Sawney Bean cannibal clan, you’ll be reaching for a clean pair of kecks before you’ve left.
Edinburgh EH8 8AZ visitscotland.com
As mentioned at top of the list, Castle Rock where Edinburgh Castle sits on was formed by a volcanic eruption. Well, welcome to your volcano. Not many people know but Arthur’s Seat, beloved by hikers and tourists alike is actually an extinct volcano! It hasn’t erupted in 340 million years, so we’re going to hazard a guess that it’s fine to climb.
The Cameo, 38 Home St, Edinburgh EH3 9LZ picturehouses.com/cinema/the-cameo
If you’re a movie fan, then head on down to the Cameo Picturehouse, one of the oldest cinemas in Scotland. There’s no better way to unwind from a heavy session, than sitting in a dark room with a good film, so Cameo have you covered.
5 York Pl, Edinburgh EH1 3EB thestand.co.uk
Start your stag do right, by laughing yourself stupid with your mates. The Stand comedy club has been entertaining Edinburgh’s residents and visitors since 1996, so they know how it is when it comes to making you chuckle.
Edinburgh isn’t just a beautiful city, it also has a beautiful travel route. The A1 will take you up along the east coast, right into the city centre.
Edinburgh Airport is well equipped and has plenty of routes convenient to other UK cities. It’s also only a short 30 minute journey from Edinburgh’s city centre.
Trains to Edinburgh are reasonably priced and don’t take too much time at all (unless you’re travelling from Bristol. Sorry Bristol). Again, if you travel up the east coast, you’ll be treated to spectacular views of the coastline.
Edinburgh Airport is well equipped and has plenty of routes convenient to other UK cities. It’s also only a short 30 minute journey from Edinburgh’s city centre.
Edinburgh Airport is a short 8 miles from the city centre and is dead easy to get to. A bus will take you around 50 minutes, but there are quicker routes via train and taxi.
£12 - £18
How far does a Clydesdale bank note stretch these days.
Average Price of a Lap Dance
Edinburgh is home to the only royally knighted penguin in the world (yep, it’s a thing). Sir Nils Olav, who resides at Edinburgh Zoo, is the Colonel-in-Chief of the Norwegian Royal guard
Inventors of the sky scrapers. During the 18th century, the city was struggling to accommodate its rapidly increasing population and so decided to build up. The iconic 10-storey buildings located around Old Town were the first of their kind and were the inspiration behind the tower blocks that we know today.
They like to be punctual. The Balmoral Clock on Princess Street has been 3 minutes fast since 1902, so commuters are not late for their trains at nearby Waverley station. The only time the clock is set to its correct time is during Edinburgh’s Hogmanay celebrations on 31st December.
We've got loads of Edinburgh stag do activities to choose from that'll keep you busy all day and night
*We take pride in our work and all of the information in the guide was correct at the time of publication - 12/11/2021. Probably. Please note: Some of the details above may be affected by ongoing COVID19 restrictions. Please see our Coronavirus Advice for Stags and Hens for more info.
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