Discovering Edinburgh’s hidden gems during the festival, by artist Dodo Flügge

The Edinburgh Festival can be overwhelming at times, battling through hordes of people all wanting that precious ticket or place at the bar.

Published 14th Jul 2017
Updated 12 th Sep 2023

However, have no fear, self-taught artist, Dodo Flügge has put together her top tips for discovering Edinburgh’s hidden gems during the capital’s busiest summer month.

Creator of the accessories and apparel brand, Diedododa, the Hamburg born artist has lived in the Scottish Capital for the past 15 years and is a well-known face on the Edinburgh arts scene.

Her love of discovering gems, hidden within this gorgeous city, helps inspire a sense of excitement in her prints and accessories, driven by the desire to create, surprise, play and experiment – all worthy attributes of Edinburgh Festival itself.

Best Cocktail Bars

Blood & Wine Edinburgh

Picture: The Pop Up Geeks Facebook

Just off Rose Street is the ever so quaint, Bryant & Mack Detective Agency. A cosy speakeasy bar with seriously good service and even better cocktails, the vibe is quirky and whimsical and was a huge inspiration for my cocktail print collection.

Another must during the festival, is the Blood & Wine Game of Thrones themed pop-up bar by The Popup Geeks.

Situated in the downstairs area of Daylight Robbery Bar on Dublin Street, these guys put some serious research into the creation of their themed cocktails!

The Permit Room bar downstairs at Dishoom on St Andrew Square also offers a very inventive list of cocktails…it stays open late but be warned, it gets super busy on weekends.

Best Coffee

Strolling from one show to the next calls for much needed coffee breaks…my favourite place for this is August 21 on Causewayside.

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With great coffee and the most delicious handmade bites and cakes, you can usually find me there of an afternoon, working on my designs or catching up with friends.

Best Festival Venue

A stone’s throw away from August 21 is the awesome arts festival venue – Summerhall. You could spend an entire day in that place alone!

There’s always great shows, events and exhibitions running from early on until late in the evening, with an equally good bar and beer garden.

There’s even a brewery and gin distillery on site – what more could you want from a festival venue?!

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Best Park
Located to the south of Edinburgh Old Town, The Meadows is the perfect place to relax and soak up the sun between shows.

A 10/15 minute walk from The Pleasance and other festival venues in the Old Town, it’s easy to get to and a fab BBQ spot for those warm August evenings.

Best Sunday Roast


Picture: Sailsbury Arms Facebook

I’m not much of a fine dining kind of gal and like my food fresh, well thought through and without the faff!

The Salisbury Arms in Newington is an old favourite of mine, though beware, they get very busy so booking ahead is essential.

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