Edinburgh is the second largest city in Scotland and home to incredible culture, many beautiful green spaces, excellent schools and a warm and welcoming community. It’s a great place to live for both families and young professionals, which is why so many people choose to move there each year.

If you’re thinking of making the move to Edinburgh, then you should find this article extremely useful. Not only will we be covering the best places to live in Edinburgh but we’ll also be looking at the cultural highlights of the city as well as the things to consider when moving to Scotland for the first time.

Edinburgh City

Edinburgh City

New Town

New Town is in beautiful surroundings and a great place to move with a family. It has a number of great places to eat and drink, including Dishoom – a fantastic bar and restaurant.

Due to being a highly sought after area that’s very close to the city centre, the property prices in New Town can be very high, with many of them being priced over £1M.


Marchmont is another excellent part of Edinburgh to live in. The excellent nearby schools and range of things to do, including a playground and sports pitches, make it perfect for families.

Another upmarket part of Edinburgh, Marchmont property prices are on the higher end.


Polwarth has plenty to do for residents, including a cinema, supermarkets, gym and restaurant. It also has a number of great shops and green spaces, making it ideal if you want somewhere relaxing to live.

Being quite far from the city centre, Polwarth property prices are considerably cheaper than those in Marchmont and New Town.


Bruntsfield is another area that offers a lot for residents, including the Dominion Cinema and the excellent Kings Theatre. There are also a number of great shops, restaurants and cafes to be found there.

Bruntsfield property prices are significantly higher than average for Edinburgh due to it being an upmarket, sought after area.


Last but not least is Stockbridge. It has many great bars, shops and restaurants and is also just a few minutes away from the city centre, so it’s a very convenient place to live if you need to commute.

Property prices in Stockbridge are quite high too and have risen quite a bit in the last few years, as is typical for much of the UK.

Edinburgh Castle

Edinburgh Castle

  • Edinburgh Castle – Edinburgh Castle is one of the highlights of the city and attracts people from around the world each year. It’s an incredible looking structure that’s awe-inspiring in its size and dates back all the way to the Iron Age , so there’s plenty of fascinating history to learn about while you’re there.
  • National Museum of Scotland – Another must-visit when you’re in Edinburgh is the National Museum of Scotland. Perfect for visiting on a rainy day, the indoor museum is free entry and gives you the chance to learn about all types of history, not just related to Scotland and Edinburgh.
  • Camera Obscura and World of Illusions – Camera Obscura and World of Illusions is a perfect place to visit if you have kids. There are many illusions and interactive exhibitions on its five floors and the Camera Obscura itself allows you to view Edinburgh in a completely unique way.
  • Edinburgh Dungeon – Edinburgh Dungeon is a great choice if you’re looking for an alternative to the castles or green spaces to visit in Edinburgh. As well as being able to learn about the more gruesome aspects of the city’s history, there are also late night events held there for adults, so it’s great whether you’re visiting with kids or on your own.
  • Scotch Whiskey Experience – Scotland is known for its great whisky and the Scotch Whiskey Experience gives you the chance to sample it first hand, as well as learn more about the distillery process.
  • Scott Monument – Scott Monument is an incredibly impressive building and was erected to celebrate the life of one of Scotland’s best-loved writers – Sir Walter Scott. Climbing to the top of the building will also provide you with an incredible view of the city.

Things to research before moving to Scotland

Assuming you’re moving from somewhere else in the UK other than Scotland, there are certain things you should take into account before deciding on your move. Below are some of the main ones.

  • Cost of living – The cost of living is a very important thing to research before moving to Edinburgh, particularly if you’re planning to move there with your family. The property prices in Edinburgh are fairly affordable compared to some of the more expensive areas in England but they’re still quite a lot higher than Scotland as a whole, so this is certainly something to take into account.
  • Local culture – Although it’s on the same piece of land, the culture in Scotland can be quite different to other parts of the UK, including England. Culture doesn’t just refer to the history and attractions there but also what it’s like to live there on a day-to-day basis. Generally it’s not too much of a culture shock for people who’ve lived elsewhere in the UK but if you’re moving from further afield, it might take some adjusting to, especially the weather.
  • Work opportunities – Work opportunities are another very important thing to consider, especially if you’re planning to move there for work rather than study. Even if you have a job already lined up, it’s still a good idea to research what the job market is like for your future.
  • Weather – The weather in Edinburgh isn’t drastically different to many other parts of the UK but in general it’s a bit milder in the summer and colder during the winter. People generally don’t move to Scotland for the incredible weather, so this isn’t an issue in most cases.

Moving to Edinburgh checklist 

Below are some of the main things to do before moving to Edinburgh.

  • Think if you want to rent or buy – This is a big one. If you’re planning to get a mortgage and buy a property in Edinburgh then this is obviously a much bigger commitment than renting.  Whether or not this is the right choice for you will depend on if you’re moving with a family or on your own as well as what stage in your career/life you’re at.
  • Decide on the part of the city you want to live in – This is another important thing to consider. Hopefully the content earlier in the article has helped you somewhat in making that decision. There are many excellent areas to live in Edinburgh, so you shouldn’t have a problem finding somewhere that’s right for you.
  • Book a moving company – If you’ve decided on where you’re going to move and have made arrangements, whether it’s to rent or buy, then you’ll need to book a moving company to help you make the move. The cost of a removal company is usually based on a combination of the size of your house and how much distance needs to be covered.


You should now be much better informed about what Edinburgh is like as a city and whether or not moving there is right for you. With relatively affordable property, great culture and beautiful historic sites and natural spaces, it’s no wonder it’s become such a popular place to live.