The days are long, the sun is out, and it's warm enough to ditch the jumper ... sometimes. It's June, it's solstice month, and we're thinking of how best to make use of the Great Stockbridge Outdoors.
So...Gimmee Five Outdoor Pursuits in Stockbridge.
- The first, is to make use of the brilliant communal space of Inverleith Park. Our favourite spot is the south facing hill that rises up above the pond, giving a perfect incline to absorb the rays (safely, with SPF, please), watch the cygnets with their parents, and gaze across the old city to the castle on its rocky mount. Grab a picnic too - some healthy fruit from the Greengrocer, very moreish bread from Herbies of Edinburgh, cheese from George Mewes Cheese, and finish off with a cake and coffee from The Pastry Section.
2. You can't consider yourself a Stockbridge Local until you've given a tourist directions to the Botanics. If the sun's out, it's likely this place will be busy with families with prams, tourists and their maps and locals grabbing a bit of flora. Don't worry, though, there are plenty of nooks and quieter paths where you can sit amongst plants from around the world and just soak up the beauty. If you're inspired, there's the Botanics shop to try to recreate a little of the spirit of what you've seen.
3. We've got the adorable Circus Lane with its beautifully manicured plants tumbling onto the cobbled streets, we've got the stately Fettes College with its grand facade, and there are countless inspiring patches along the Water of Leith, with waterfalls, Dean Bridge and St Bernard's Well to wander round. So, if it's clear, grab a camera and have a sightsee around our beautiful architecture that's free to visit, and don't forget the annual Stockbridge Duck Race will be in action on the 1st July at 3pm, a perfect fun, photo opportunity.
4. Wimbledon's approaching, which means it's primetime for outdoor pursuits. Watch cricket at the Grange's beautifully manicured ground, or, if you're over fifty, get yourself involved in walking touch rugby at the Accies. The new initiative is on Monday mornings at 10am on Raeburn Place, just bring your trainers and £2! Inverleith Park itself is a perfect site for training- British Military Fitness run classes there, there's the wooden circuits around the perimeter to test you, and the fixed equipment by the playpark, or the personal trainer Be-Fit360 will train women at any suitable location- the sundial garden is a great spot. If you're wanting to stretch it out, take an Eco Yoga Mat with you, and you can sit in Lotus while soaking in the sounds of buzzing bees and smell of wild flowers in the new wilder sections.
5. Of course, you think of Stockbridge on a sunny day and it doesn't take long to thing of all the places you can sit outside to enjoy a meal. Wine and cheese at Henri's. A platter at Hectors. Brunch at The Pantry. Simply taking a walk through the streets of Stockbridge gives you a host of culinary choices to choose from, and many places to sit out and watch the world go by as you do it.