Annual Meeting 2023 in Edinburgh, Scotland. Travel and accommodation.

 national museum galleries
View of the galleries. National Museum Scotland. Copyright NMS.

nationa museum of scotland logo The host institution will be National Museums Scotland.

Save the dates for the General Conference and Annual Meeting in Edinburgh, Scotland, from Sunday 24th to Thursday 28th September. See program page for more details.


Travel to Edinburgh

By Air:

Edinburgh Airport is located around a 30-minute drive from the city centre.

Taxi from the airport: Find a taxi or a private hire vehicle in the East Terminus facility located just across the plaza from the main terminal. Fares vary but expect to pay between £30-40 depending on the location of your accommodation.

Travel to the city centre by public transport is possible by various routes:

Buses from the airport:

The Airlink 100 bus connects you directly to the city centre, via Haymarket and the West End, terminating at St Andrew Square, close to the central Waverley train station. Follow signs from the arrivals area. The Airlink 100 departs very 10 minutes during the day (04:30 – 01:00 and every 30 minutes during the night (01:00 – 04:30)

The Skylink 200 and 400 services provide connections from the airport across the city of Edinburgh. For more information on routes and fares see:

By tram from the airport:

Trams are one of the easiest ways to get to and from the airport with fast and frequent services to Edinburgh city centre. Trams depart every 7 minutes, between 7am and 7pm, and every 15 minutes outwith these hours, with an end-to-end journey of just 30 minutes. More information, including where the tram stops, see:

By Train:

Edinburgh Waverley is the central train station. It is 6 minutes by train from Edinburgh Haymarket, the city’s other train station.

Travel from the train station (Edinburgh Waverley):
The Taxi Rank at Edinburgh Waverley is on Market Street, behind the train station – follow the signs inside the station for the Market Street Exit.

Bus links can be picked up outside from Princes Street, or North Bridge. However, please note that due to ongoing road works for the installation of tram lines, many bus routes are diverted. Please see note below for travel around Edinburgh
If you are staying in the West End, Haymarket station will be your closest stop.

Travelling around the city

Public transport
Due to various ongoing roadworks and route diversions, the best option is to download the Transport for Edinburgh (Lothian bus & tram) app, which will help you to plan your route and find the relevant bus stop.Information on fares and bus routes can be found here:

Paying your fare:
Buses accept only the exact change or contactless card payments (including Apple Pay). Alternatively, you can download the TfE M Tickets App, where you can purchase bus tickets in advance for use on the services.

On foot:
Edinburgh is very walkable but do note if you’ve not visited before that it is quite hilly, with lots of uneven, cobbled streets.

There are taxi ranks around the city, but these aren’t always that obvious. The best options are to phone ahead or download an app to book directly on your phone:
Taxi phone numbers:
Central Taxis: +44 131 229
City Cabs: +44 131 228 1211

The Gett app links directly to Edinburgh black cabs – these are the most accessible option, which can generally take 5 passengers, and are a metred fare.
Uber also operates in Edinburgh.



NB. Edinburgh is very hilly so not all hotels that are close to the museum are necessarily as accessible on foot as they appear on the map -particularly those around the old town/Canongate area. If you have any questions about hotel locations, please email ICOM Costume board member and Conference host, Georgina Ripley:

The National Museum of Scotland on Chambers Street is on the edge of the Old Town, a short walk from the famous Royal Mile. It is a popular tourist area and very busy with students, as some of the central University buildings are also located here. Hotels close to the museum therefore tend to be expensive but Edinburgh has very good bus links and to some locations, tram links. It will be more cost-efficient to stay slightly further from the museum – areas like Leith or Haymarket/West End are around a 30 to 40-minute walk but have good bus links. Individual neighbourhoods are often vibrant communities with plenty of restaurant and café options for evening meals. Please see the list of areas included in this pack.


Premier Inn:
– Edinburgh City Centre Lauriston Place
– Princes Street
– Royal Mile- York Place/ St James Quarter

Premier Inn Hub: Contemporary hotels with compact rooms are cleverly designed to include everything you’d expect from a Premier Inn room in about half the space.
– Haymarket
– Rose Street
– Royal Mile

Ibis Edinburgh Centre South Bridge Royal Mile:

Holiday Inn Express (various locations):

Old Waverley Hotel: (please note, this has step access only from street level. Use code BOOK-DIRECT for 15% off best available rate with no deposit required)

The Bruntsfield Hotel:

Black Ivy: (10% discount if you book directly with BLACKIVY10)

Ten hill Place:

Motel One:

Ivy Braveheart Guest House: (17-minute walk; bus routes number 2, 23, 27, 45)

A-Haven Townhouse: (This is further out, but the number 7 and the number 14 bus go from directly outside the guesthouse to North Bridge, a 5-minute walk from the museum).


There are various managed apartments on offer which could be a better option for people travelling in couples or groups:
Destiny Scotland: (book direct for best offer)
Native Places:
Wilde Aparthotels:
KM Apartments:

We would recommend checking sites such as Expedia and Expedia has some good apartment options, as does their sister company Vrbo:

There are also of course plenty of independent Bed & Breakfast and Airbnb options.


List of areas accessible to the museum

Please click on the links for more information, including which bus routes service these areas.

Royal Mile

Unique medieval town with hidden wynds. Home of many visitor attractions, tours, and a myriad of souvenir shops.

Newington and Southside

The area now is home to the main University of Edinburgh campus, centred on George Square, and has been determined by the student community to be the best place to live in the whole city. Very handily located for the museum.


One of the oldest parts of the capital, not only does the Grassmarket have an array of colourful shops, bars, restaurants, and cafes to satisfy all tastes and budgets, but it offers stunning views looking up to Edinburgh Castle. Bursting with life and colour, while still retaining its historical character, it is one of Edinburgh’s most vibrant and popular neighbourhoods. Again, very handily placed for the museum but likely to be noisier at night:


Joining Bruntsfield with Lothian Road, New Town to the north, and the Old Town to the east of the city, Tollcross is a major thoroughfare into the city.


This attractive leafy neighbourhood is one of the most affluent in Edinburgh. Heading south from the west end of Princes Street up Lothian Road and through Tollcross you’ll come to Bruntsfield with Morningside just beyond. It is a friendly place with plenty of cafes, pubs, restaurants, and quirky shops. The neighbourhood is outside the city centre and largely residential, but it’s a nice 20–30-minute walk to the museum across the leafy meadows.


With its cobbled streets, elegant Georgian architecture, lush green parks & gardens and abundant mix of independent shops & restaurants, Stockbridge is one of the city’s most popular neighbourhoods. Located to the north of the city, Stockbridge is just a short walk from the bustling city centre, and yet has it distinct and charming village feel.

New Town

Edinburgh’s New Town and its open grid structure stands in contrast to the organic, winding streets and closes of the Old Town. Together, they comprise the city’s UNESCO World Heritage site. The area’s wide and elegant streets, lined with stunning neo-classical architecture are one of the world’s finest examples of Georgian-era town planning, and a wander through the New Town will help you understand why Edinburgh was nicknamed the Athens of the North.

Broughton Street and Canonmills

Edinburgh’s Broughton Street is packed with an eclectic mix of unique shops and restaurants and has long been associated with a bohemian, arty vibe. It’s sandwiched between the New Town and vibrant Broughton, while the top of the street also marks the start of multicultural Leith Walk. It’s also a stone’s throw from the Edinburgh Playhouse theatre, the Omni Cinema complex, and the St James Quarter. If travelling by train, the York Place stop is a 1-minute walk away, and Edinburgh Waverley is a 10-minute walk. The number 8 bus connects this area to the museum.

Canonmills lies in a low hollow just north of Edinburgh’s New Town. Originally a loch, the area was drained in the 18th and 19th centuries. The origin of the neighbourhood’s name is from the Augustinian Canons of Holyrood Abbey, who operated a mill on the land from the 12th century. Canonmills is within easy reach of the Edinburgh City Centre, but also has several restaurants, bars, and shops of its own. It is an easy walk to Princes Street, has excellent bus links and is a 15-minute walk from Edinburgh Waverley train station.

The West End

Where Georgian splendour meets modern architecture. Tucked away just behind Shandwick Place, the West End Village is one of Edinburgh’s hidden gems. At the very heart of the village lies both William Street and Stafford Street, where the colourful, stylish boutiques and some much-loved pubs and bars combine to create a bohemian feel to this part of Edinburgh.


Leith is one of Edinburgh’s most eclectic, and trendy neighbourhoods, offering a more edgy and independent vibe. An eclectic mix of independent cafes, grocers and shops mean Leith still holds strongly onto its own identity, even over a century on from when it was officially incorporated into the city of Edinburgh in 1920.

If you want a hand copy of this document, please download the ICOM Costume Conference Edinburgh Information.

national museum fashion galleries
View of the Fashion Galleries at the National Museum Scotland. Copyright NMS.