This page gives some travel information for visitors who are coming to meetings in the science buildings of the botanic gardens or who are attending courses here.
Edinburgh By Air
Edinburgh Airport has flights from all the major European hub airports and budget airlines from many other destinations. There are a few direct transatlantic flights as well.
There is a bus service (Airlink) that runs from outside the terminal building to Edinburgh Waverley train station in the centre of the city. It takes 30-40minutes depending on the traffic. Currently an open return is £6. There are also plenty of taxis that will bring you from the airport directly to the gardens and they will cost between £20 and £40. Unless you are in a big rush or traveling in a group consider getting the Airlink bus into town and then getting a taxi or local bus. This would work out much cheaper and may not take much longer.
There is a local bus service (Lothian Buses 35) that runs from the Airport into the center of town for just £1.50 but takes over an hour. It is probably best avoided unless you have a lot of time and want to see a different view of Edinburgh.
Edinburgh By Rail
The main station, and the one you want for the botanics, is Edinburgh Waverley. The second station for Edinburgh is called Haymarket. This is not so convenient for the botanics. There are also some smaller suburban stations.
If you are traveling from London there is a reasonably fast East coast main line from London Kings Cross Station. The journey typically takes between four and five hours. The last train usually leaves London by 18:30hrs. From elsewhere in the UK services are good but tend to use the slower West coast line.
The Caledonian Sleeper train runs from London St Pancras late in the evening and arrives in Edinburgh for breakfast. If you like to experience traveling and to save a nights accommodation in either city this is worth a try!
There are frequent (typically every 15 minutes) shuttle services between Edinburgh and Glasgow. They take about 45 minutes. All Scotland’s cities are served by rail from Edinburgh.
Edinburgh Bus Station
The bus station (for buses going into/out of town) is very close to Waverley rail station. There are cheaper return services to Glasgow from here.
For the past few years Edinburgh has been building a tram line from the Airport across the centre of town. It is much delayed and much over budget but should be running in 2014. Currently it is more a a talking point than a service.
Local Bus Travel
Edinburgh has a very good local bus company – Lothian Buses. Routes and fare details can be found on their website. You can either buy a day ticket or pay when you get on a bus. You must have the correct money for your ticket. The bus driver does not give change. Currently a single journey of any length is £1.50. In the centre of town it is often quicker and easier to walk but for longer journeys this is good value.
Centre of Edinburgh To RBGE
The botanic gardens are 1.3 miles (2.2 km) North of Waverley rail station in the centre of the city. There are two public entrances to the gardens. On the Western side is the John Hope Gateway which is the main interpretation centre. On the Eastern side there is a smaller public entrance on Inverleith Row. The science and Education buildings are also on the Eastern side on Inverleith Row just to the North of this public entrance. The next bus stop along.
Coming from the centre of town you can get a bus (numbers 8,23 or 27) or a taxi (<£10) or walk (it is down hill).
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There are two flag poles sticking out at an angle from the main administration building. During office hours reception is to the left of this building. Out of office hours the reception is through the door under the flag poles.
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