Useful local information
Not only a capital city, Edinburgh is also the leading festival city in the world, home to the phenomenal summer festivals, and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. With a plethora of world-class visitor attractions, sightseeing in Edinburgh is pretty easy, and you can experience different centuries of history without even moving. Head to the bottom of the famous Royal Mile and you'll find the 17th century Palace of Holyroodhouse, the modern parliament building and the prehistoric extinct volcano famously known as Arthur's Seat standing proudly next to each other.
- Eating and drinking - Dynamic Earth is located close to several restaurants, coffee shops and food outlets.
- Money - Britain's currency is the pound sterling (£). Credit cards - especially Visa and Mastercard - are widely accepted in restaurants, bars, cafés and shops. American Express and Diners Club cards are less commonly accepted. There are plenty of cash machines (also known as cashpoints or ATMs) available in and around Edinburgh.
- VAT - Value-added tax (VAT) is a 20% sales tax levied on most goods and services except basic food items, books and children's clothing. Restaurants must, by law, include VAT in their menu prices. If you are travelling for leisure or business purposes, you may be eligible for a VAT refund. The VAT refund scheme is called the Retail Export Scheme or Tax-Free Shopping. www.hmrc.gov.uk/vat/sectors/consumers/overseas-visitors.htm
- Electricity - UK appliances are fitted with three-pin plugs that can be connected to the UK mains supply through wall sockets. Unlike the sockets in many other countries, these have a switch to turn the power supply on and off - make sure you've turned it on if you're trying to charge your appliance. UK power sockets deliver an average voltage of 230v, although in practice this can be slightly higher. To charge devices that are compatible with this voltage, simply buy the appropriate adapter from the airport or from high street shops. If your device runs on a lower voltage, however, then you will also need a converter to stop it from over-heating. Even if your country uses lower voltages, remember to check whether your device is dual-voltage (look for the 110-240v notation) before buying a converter.
- Emergencies - Visitors should be aware of their personal safety. Call 999 for the emergency services (police, fire and ambulance) which is a free call from any phone.