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So you’ve made the right decision by choosing to visit Scotland’s capital for its biggest festival of the year but how do you choose the Edinburgh Fringe accommodation?
This guide will explain the best places to stay in Edinburgh for the Festival Fringe depending on your budget. Naturally, if you want to be within walking distance to venues, you will be paying top dollar but if you’re on a budget we can provide tips on where to stay that won’t quite break the bank.
If you’ve not done so already, read our guide to the Fringe for an extensive breakdown of what to expect and who to see.
Where to Stay in Edinburgh for the Fringe
Venues and Areas Explained
Most of the Fringe shows and events take place on the streets and in the businesses around the Old Town all the way down to George Street in the New Town, which is just behind Princes Street.
Pop-up food trucks and bars are located on George Street and around Teviot and George Square Gardens at Edinburgh University in the South Side.
It takes around 25 minutes to walk from George Street so keep this in mind when booking shows!
If you need more details about Fringe venues, you can read about them fully in our guide.
Old Town Edinburgh Fringe Festival Accommodation
The Old Town, which includes the Royal Mile, Edinburgh Castle and the Tattoo, Victoria Street, the Cowgate, and the Grassmarket, is a great base for those who want to open their accommodation door and be smack bang among the crowds and the Fringe buzz.
Old Town hotels will double in price during the Fringe compared to low season prices.
This is a lively area so do consider the potential for noise if you are a light sleeper.
Royal Mile Hotels and Apartments
The Radisson Blu is a popular hotel on the Royal Mile.
Guests love the modern and comfortable bedrooms with air conditioning which is quite rare for Scottish hotels!
There’s a fitness suite, spa, and swimming pool so if you can find time to relax during your busy Fringe schedule, you can do it back at the Radisson.
There’s also a bar and kitchen called Itchycoo.
ibis Edinburgh Centre Royal Mile – Hunter Square
I have personally stayed at the ibis by Hunter Square.
It is quiet hotel with spacious budget rooms and friendly staff at reception.
Rooms don’t have AC but they do have cooling systems.
There is a bar at reception if you fancy a coffee or a beer before heading out into the madness.
As you leave the ibis, turn left for the Royal Mile, which is seconds away, or right for the Cowgate and Grassmarket which is less than five minutes’ walk.
There is a popular pizza restaurant called Civerinos next door and plenty of pubs such as The Piper’s Rest and The City Cafe in the area.
Check out our Old town hotels guide for more.
Aparthotel Adagio is located at 231 Canongate which is the same street as the Royal Mile, in fact, it is the same row, the name just changes!
Apartments have a kitchenette with a coffee maker, kettle, crockery, kitchen utensils, and a private bathroom.
Some have a seating area too.
Guests say the 24-hour reception staff go above and beyond.
When you leave your apartment you will be minutes away from the street performers on the Royal Mile, the John Knox House Museum, the famous World’s End pub, and a secret garden which you can see in the image below.
New Town Hotels
The Fringe also spills over into the New Town which includes Princes Street Gardens, Rose Street and George Street.
Princes Street Hotels
Princes Street used to be the main shopping drag in Edinburgh but this is changed lately with stores moving to St James Quarter, which is at the top of Princes Street.
Princes Street Gardens runs alongside the street and Edinburgh Castle overlooks the gardens.
I have personally stayed at The Balmoral which sits at 1 Princes Street, next to Waverley Train Station.
Coined ‘Scotland’s finest hotel’, most visitors are aware of this historic hotel and if they’re not, they can’t miss it with its striking clock when they first arrive to the city.
The Balmoral offers double rooms and suites with AC, including the famous JK Rowling Suite (Room 552) which is one of many Harry Potter locations in Edinburgh.
There are three restaurants to choose from, Number One Restaurant, Brasserie Prince, and the Palm Court for afternoon tea.
Guests also have access to The Balmoral Spa and pool.
Check out our guide to Edinburgh hotels with pools if you like the sound of a swim to start or end the day!
Hotel Indigo Edinburgh
Hotel Indigo Edinburgh is located across from The Balmoral on Princes Street and is a five-minute walk from George Street.
Guests love the location, comfortable bedrooms with AC, and breakfast.
The restaurant, Twenty Princes Street, and the lovely Juniper Bar can be found next to Hotel Indigo.
George Street Hotels and Apartments
You’ll find shops, upmarket restaurants, and bars, such as The Dome, dotted along George Street.
A bar sets up outside of the Assembly Rooms, a nice sun trap for afternoon drinks between shows!
InterContinental Hotels – Edinburgh The George
The George is one of Edinburgh’s historic hotels, located in a Grade II building, constructed in 1775.
Guests enjoy the lavish feel of the hotel’s public spaces, the breakfast, and the courteous staff.
There is a fitness suite and a bar called The Printing Press.
The hotel’s King’s Hall is a popular wedding venue.
The George is one of Edinburgh’s dog-friendly hotels.
Eden Locke (127 George St) is a series of 72 stylish apartments in Edinburgh.
The suites come with free Wi-Fi, smart TVs, kitchenettes, and sofas. In-room spa treatments are offered.
Guests can also caffeine up at the property’s Eden Locke cafe before starting the busy Fringe schedule.
Cheap Places to Stay for Edinburgh Fringe
If you are on a tight budget there is the option of Edinburgh hostels, if you don’t mind sharing a dorm, or student halls.
Note: There are free shows at the Fringe but it is customary to pay a tip at the end.
CoDE Pod – The CoURT
CoDE Pod (1a Parliament Square) is a very modern hostel in Edinburgh.
It is located in a former courthouse and jail, transformed into a luxury pod hostel that has secure keypad entry.
There’s a variety of rooms with Japanese pods to choose from starting at 6 to 12-person dorms and you can choose female only if you prefer.
Rooms have AC, WiFi, and sockets.
There’s also a cafe called The CoURT.
Guests love the location right off the Royal Mile next to St Giles’ Cathedral.
They also say, although CoDE Pod is called it hostel, the space feels private.
Destiny Student – Holyrood (Brae House)
Destiny Student at Holyrood (Brae House) (31 Abbeyhill) is campus accommodation near Arthur’s Seat and the Scottish Parliament at the bottom of the Royal Mile.
Rooms include 120cm-wide double en-suites with a shared kitchen and living area or private apartments for larger groups or families.
Alternatively, for even cheaper options you could consider staying out at Edinburgh Park, in East Lothian or over the Forth Bridges in Fife.
However, public transport does not run all night so you would need to watch your timings for the last ride home.
Our Edinburgh Hotel Guides
- Where to stay in Edinburgh
- Edinburgh hotels for budget trips
- Edinburgh hotels with pools
- Edinburgh hotels with parking
- Edinburgh hotels with dog-friendly rooms
- Edinburgh hotels for romantic getaways
- Edinburgh hotels for Christmas trips
- Edinburgh accommodation for the Festival Fringe
- Edinburgh Old Town hotels
- Edinburgh West End hotels
- Edinburgh Leith hotels
- Edinburgh Stockbridge hotels
- Edinburgh South Queensferry hotels
- Review: The Balmoral Hotel
- Review: House of Gods
This guide shares advice on where to stay in Edinburgh for the Fringe, with a focus on the areas that are within walking distance of the main EdFringe venues.