Located just east of Edinburgh, East Lothian feels miles away from the big city. The region is renowned for its natural beauty, castles, and wildlife. Not surprisingly, it is a popular holiday spot and HomeAway has a large selection of stunning East Lothian holiday cottages and apartments to accommodate all sorts of visitors. The outdoors is the main attraction in East Lothian. Despite being so close to Edinburgh, it is a haven for local wildlife and offers romantic rural and coastal landscapes. Romantic walks on the beach, bird watching, sea excursions, hiking, and biking are all popular activities here, especially in the spring and summer months. Holiday cottages in East Lothian come in all shapes and sizes, but are all furnished to a high standard. Many are located right next to the water, whilst others are tucked away in a more secluded setting.
-Sightseeing: John Muir Country Park was named after the famous Scottish-American naturalist. The park is located on a stretch of coastline in Dunbar, his birthplace. It is a tranquil setting that has been left largely untouched. It’s a wonderful place to explore and is also home to the ruins of Dunbar Castle. The castle played integral roles in several major battles over the centuries and now proudly sits over a tranquil harbour.
-Historical attractions: Dirleton Castle is one of the oldest surviving castles in Scotland and is situated in the peaceful village of Dirleton, which is home to several East Lothian holiday houses. Its towers date back all the way to 1240 and remains of a pit-prison, several storage vaults, and a chapel also still exist. One of the highlights of the grounds is the garden that surrounds the castle. Though gardens have been on the premises for hundreds of centuries, the latest incarnation dates back to the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
-Natural attractions: The Scottish Seabird Centre is located at the very tip of North Berwick; an ideal spot for seabird watching. The centre is an educational centre aimed at both children and adults. Visitors can learn about the different kinds of seabirds that inhabit the local shores. The centre also operates seasonal bird watching cruises.
-Sport: Musselburgh Racecourse hosts an average of 25 race days a year and offers up fun and Scottish hospitality. Children under 17 are admitted free to the venue and each adult ticket comes with a free race card. Horse racing is a unique experience that the whole family can enjoy. The horses featured on Musselburgh’s turf track are some of the best in the UK. Along with races, Musselburgh has a restaurant and bar, and offers all kinds of pre- and post-race entertainment, especially in the summer months.
-Cultural attractions: The Glenkinchie Distillery is a producer of one of Scotland’s finest single malt whiskies. A popular trip for visitors in East Lothian holiday homes, it is situated just two miles south of the village of Pencaitland and provides several tours of its facilities daily. Because of its proximity to Edinburgh (20 miles away), Glenkinchie is widely known as the ‘Edinburgh Malt’ and is famous for its light, floral, and fragrant aromas and flavours. The distillery tour takes visitors through how the whisky is produced and ends with a tasting session. The tour lasts around 90 minutes.
East Lothian is not known for its warm weather, but tourists and locals make the most of it. High temperatures remain steadily above 10°C from April to October, peaking in July and August when it heats up to 17°C on average. Winters are chilly, but the coastline prevents freezing temperatures most of the time. It rains an average of 5 days per month with April being the driest month.
Because it is such a rural area, most visitors choose to drive to their East Lothian holiday accommodation. The M1 and A1 make up the best direct route to the region. It runs north from London, through the centre of England, and then directly to East Lothian before reaching Edinburgh. Several towns (Musselburgh, Prestonpans, North Berwick, and Dunbar) in East Lothian have rail stations that are serviced by trains from Edinburgh.