Set to open in 2018, the V&A Museum of Design Dundee (30 miles (48km) north of Edinburgh) will be a shrine to Scotland's artistic heritage. Japanese architect Kengo Kuma has designed the ship-like building to also serve as a relaxing ‘living room for the city’.
Doune Castle is something of a pilgrimage site, as much of Monty Python and the Holy Grail was shot there. More recently the castle featured in Game of Thrones pilot episode and Outlander. (40 miles (64km) from Edinburgh).
Tick off another Scotland city – Glasgow is only 49 minutes by train from Edinburgh. It’s got quite a different vibe, and is the place to go if you’re a fan of Charles Rennie Mackintosh, with key buildings like the Glasgow School of Art, Willow Tea Rooms and Mackintosh House to see.
There are a surprising amount of fantastic beaches within easy reach of Edinburgh, so you can get a taste of Scotland’s stunning landscapes. East Lothian has 40 miles (64km) of coastline and award-winning beaches, and is reachable by rail or car in under an hour from Edinburgh.
North Berwick and Dunbar are pretty day-trip locations from Edinburgh, on the coast. At North Berwick you can spot the likes of puffins at the Scottish Seabird Centre, while at Dunbar you can enjoy a stroll around its picturesque harbours.
Just a 20-minute train ride from Edinburgh is Linlithgow with its Palace that’s famous for being the birthplace of Mary Queen of Scots. The 15th-century ruins are beautifully positioned on the edge of Linlithgow Loch.