How to Go to Edinburgh, Scotland (By Plane, Train, Car, Bus & Cruise)

If you are wondering how to go to Edinburgh, Scotland, here are the suggested ways how you can reach this vibrant capital of Scotland.  I will site various ways to go to Edinburgh coming from London because this is particularly a major tourist hub.

Alternatively, I will also give some options if you are coming from North America, Mainland Europe or Asia.

Read more: 12 Best Things To Do In Edinburgh For A Fun Weekend Breaks

Ways on How to Go to Edinburgh, Scotland:

How to go to Edinburgh from London
How to go to Edinburgh from London: Edinburgh signage at Edinburgh airport

These ways how to go to Edinburgh, Scotland were mainly the route I personally took to travel to the Scottish city.

Edinburgh by Train:

Travelling to Edinburgh by train is fairly easy and straightforward. If you use the trains on average, it takes around approximates over 4 hours to travel from London Euston or London Kings Cross to Edinburgh. The trains mainly have one train change or direct train ride. The two common train line to use is the LNER (London North Eastern Railway) and Avanti West Coast.

The cost for LNER and Avanti West Coast trains ranges from £230 to £90 one way per person. You can check the rail availability and current fares on Trainline.com.

You can also try the Caledonian Sleeper train from London if you want to do overnight travel from city to city. Enjoy the luxurious way of travelling to Edinburgh through this sleeper train. They offer all en-suite rooms and are complete with available amenities for their Superior Double rooms, Club Twin rooms, Classic rooms with optional interconnecting and Standard seats with lockable storage.

The cost of the Caledonian Sleeper train from London ranges from around £300 to £70 one way per person. You can check the availability and train fares on the Caledonian Sleeper website here.

How to go to Edinburgh Scotland
Ways on how to go to Edinburgh: View of Edinburgh from Calton Hill

Glasgow to Edinburgh by train:

The Waverley Station and Haymarket Station are the main railway stations in Edinburgh. The average time for the train journey is approximately 1 hour from Glasgow Queen Street to Edinburgh. 

The cheapest way to get a train ticket to Edinburgh:

Advance fares are usually the cheapest and offer the best deals, most especially for the popular train route and destinations and during peak times, school breaks, bank holidays or the summer season.

I always recommend buying the train tickets in advance. You can check some great deals and discounts from Trainline.com here. Alternatively, you can also avail different railcards to secure your discounts. You can check which railcard suits you from Trainline.com.

Edinburgh by coach/bus:

If you are using coaches (bus), you can take either the National Express or the Megabus lines travelling regularly from Victoria Coach Station in London. This will take you around 8 to 10 hours bus ride, due to traffic, passenger pick-ups and breaks in between the journey.

You can find the current bus time schedules and bus fares of the following bus companies that travel from London to Edinburgh v.v.

Travelling by bus/coach is the cheapest way to go to Edinburgh. If you book your bus ticket in advance you can get a bus fare of less than £20 one-way. The maximum bus fare during peak times are ranging from £50 to £80 or more one-way.

Edinburgh by Car or Motorhome:

If you fancy a road trip, you can also rent a car (if you are a tourist or don’t have one) from London and drive your way up to Edinburgh. I have made a few handy UK driving tips for tourists here.

Depending on where exactly you are coming from London, driving to Edinburgh by car or motorhome can take more than 7 to 8 hours, not including driving breaks and traffic. The direct routes from London to Edinburgh are via M1 and A1 (408 miles) or via M6 and A74M (422 miles).

The petrol cost of a standard hatchback car from London to Edinburgh will cost approximately around £100. If you want to check your potential fuel usage, you can use this handy mileage calculator by the AA.

Read more: The Best Day Trips From Edinburgh (Scotland)

Edinburgh by Plane/Flights:

Edinburgh airport is the main airport in Scotland, and hundreds of international and domestic flights come here every day. You can look for the cheapest flights to Edinburgh from London through Skyscanner.

Edinburgh airport is well connected through public transport to the city centre. A tram service takes visitors to the city centre directly for about 30 to 45 minutes. Alternatively every 10 minutes, you can hop on the Air link 100 Express Bus, which takes around 30 minutes and cost you around £4.50 single and £7.50 return. 

You can also take taxis from the airport to Edinburg city centre, which cost up to £20 from the airport service desk, or alternatively, you can book an UBER taxi for around £16 per trip.

Edinburgh by Cruise:

Ways on how to go to Edinburgh, Scotland: View of the Forth Bridge from Hawes Pier, South Queensferry

From Hawes Pier, South Queensferry:

If you are taking the British Isles cruise, you are most like to dock by Edinburgh. The South Queensferry and Leith are the popular cruise port to visit Edinburgh city centre.

During our British Isles cruise, we docked by the Hawes Pier and use a tender boat to the port. The Hawes Pier can give you a perfect view of the UNESCO World Heritage site – The Forth Bridge.

From the Hawes Pier, you have a few ways how to go to Edinburgh city centre:

Via Taxi: You can book an UBER taxi or catch a taxi in front of the port.

Via Bus: The closest bus stop from Hawes Pier is the Railway Station stop which is about a 10-minute walk. Here, you can catch the BUS 43 that will take you to Edinburgh city centre. Please make sure that you have enough change for the bus fare.

Via Train: The closest train station from Hawes Pier is the Dalmeny station. Catch the train that will stop by Edinburgh Waverley station. The journey is around a 28 to 30 minutes train ride.

Edinburgh by Narrowboat cruise:

UK Canals and Waterways are vital routes during Victorian times. This intricate network of canals, rivers and waterways has been used to transport goods and produce from London and Liverpool ports to all parts of the UK.

Narrowboats in Stratford upon Avon
How to go to Edinburgh Scotland: Narrowboat cruise via UK canals and waterways

There were 7,000 miles of canals and rivers that are navigable in mainland Britain (England, Wales and Scotland). Currently, there are 5,000 miles of navigable canals left and 2,700 of these are inter-connected waterways.

One of the ways how to go to Edinburgh, Scotland is via narrowboats using the canals and waterways can be done yet this journey will take you weeks. From River Thames in London, you can rent a narrowboat that can go as far north as Lancaster Canal just north of Blackpool. Then, take the road to carry on your UK canal narrowboat journey from Glasgow to Edinburgh via the Scottish canal network.

You can check various routes and canal networks via the Canal & River Trust and the Inland Waterways Association.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Ryazan Tristram EverythingZany Author Bio

Ryazan Tristram

Travel Writer & Photographer

Ryazan has a Bachelor’s Degree in Tourism and Hotel Management. She also has more than 10 years of work experience gained from working in the hotel and travel sectors in Asia and Europe. Her work has been featured and published on Huffington Post, Reader’s Digest, Discovery Channel, World Travel Guide, MSN, CNBC, GMA, Daily Mail UK, Lonely Planet and many more. She is currently living in the UK as a dual citizen (British – Filipina). Join her in travelling around the UK and beyond with a mission to promote sustainable tourism and share travel guides, travel tips, foodies, history and culture.

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