18 things you’ll only know about Newington if you’ve lived there

The student-friendly area has (almost) everything you need within walking distance

Newington is a huge area that stretches from just after the Bridges all the way to Prestonfield, and in-between that half-hour walk there’s a lot of things you might notice about the area that tempts so many students to live there.

But there are some aspects of Newington you might not be aware of – here are 18 things you’ll only know about Newington if you’ve lived there.

1. There’s a Mosque Kitchen

It’s the place to go if you want a quick curry for a sweet price.

2. It’s home to the Royal Commonwealth Pool

Now that's what I call a pool! The #Commie, #edinburgh

A photo posted by Anna Stavrianakis (@anna_stavrianakis) on

Edinburgh’s famous swimming baths. Originally built for the two times that Edinburgh has hosted the Commonwealth Games, it’s been updated since Glasgow’s turn in 2014.

3. It’s a student hotspot

Newington is brimming with students – it’s where the cheaper accommodation in the city resides and the University of Edinburgh is nearby.

4. You’re never too far away from stunning landscape

A photo posted by Jenny Och Frida (@luffarlivet) on

Just next to the Commonwealth Pool is an old volcano called Arthur’s Seat, which is great to walk up on a rare sunny day (in case you didn’t know).

5. There are plenty of charity shops

There’s essentially a row of shops before Crosscauseway that is dedicated to charity shops. You’re guaranteed to find at least a few gems hidden away in one of them.

6. Southern Bar has boast-worthy history


A photo posted by Cece Mang (@cececce) on

Nirvana once played here after a gig, which has given people a reason to go to Southern Bar. When you do visit, you’ll get a cracking selection of rare craft beers.

7. There’s an independent beer shop

Bottle Baron on Clerk Street has a large selection of worldwide beers with knowledgeable stuff to advise you on the best beers to go for.

8. You can’t miss the cafes

You can get exquisite coffee virtually anywhere in Newington: from Filament Coffee to Brew Lab, and from Black Medicine to Kilimanjaro Coffee.

9. There’s an avant-garde epicentre in Summerhall

A photo posted by Fake Festival (@fake.festival) on

The former veterinary school converted multi-arts venue stages political exhibitions, concerts, talks, theatre, dance and film events, which means you’ll be there for something once in a while.

10. The pubs are atmospheric

this pub has £3 cocktails and i love it

A photo posted by beth tomlin (@thebethbethbeth) on

From rough and ready to the most hippest, Newington has every sort of pub you need. Admittedly there’s some you wouldn’t step into but thankfully others are warm and welcoming.

11. There’s a bargain store for everything

A photo posted by Shulian M-Hilton (@shulian95) on

If you’ve just moved into a flat and need things for the flat, Edinburgh Bargain Stores has all the miscellaneous utensils you might have forgotten about.

12. There’s a 14-acre graveyard

The Newington Cemetery opened in 1846 by the Metropolitan Cemetery Association, but was purchased by the city council a century-and-a-half later because of its neglected state.

Home to the resting place of artist Sir William McTaggart and golfer Arnaud Massy – along with 143 First World War graves and war memorial maintained by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission – a community project has saw this graveyard become a clean haven by several volunteers.

13. There’s an all-night pie shop

The last row of shops before Minto Street is home to The Edinburgh Bakehouse, which dishes up affordable, scrumptious pies that are sold during the day seven days a week and throughout the night every Friday and Saturday.

14. It once had a railway station


Newington used to have much better transport links than it does today. A railway station was opened in the late 19th century until it closed in 1962. The line still exists for rail freight use and can be viewed from Craigmillar Park.

15. There’s always something to see (and hear) at The Queen’s Hall

A photo posted by Andie (@andieissound) on

There’s always recreational activities in Newington. The Queen’s Hall hosts a diverse selection of concerts annually, home to the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and a pivotal part during the Edinburgh Fringe, International Festival and Jazz and Blues Festival.

16. There are a couple of golf courses

This part of Edinburgh, in and outwith Newington, is littered with golf courses. There’s Prestonfield Golf Club and Craigmillar Park a couple of miles away from each other, so you’re not stuck if you want to better your handicap.

17. It has a beautiful mural

A photo posted by Pete Wands (@petewands) on

Between Clerk Street and Buccleuch Street (also known as Gifford Park), there is an arty mural designed by Kate George to brighten up a converted cycle route.

18. There’s a fry-up munchie box

Down on Dalkeith Road, there’s a place called On a Roll that isn’t afraid to experiment. For example, they do five-filler rolls (yes, that does mean you can get FIVE items on your roll) along with a fry-up munchie box, and it looks strangely satisfying.


16 things you’ll only know about Dalry if you’ve lived there

18 things you’ll only know about Easter Road if you’ve lived there

17 things you won’t know about Morningside unless you’ve lived there