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August in Edinburgh

Visit Edinburgh in August and you’ll see sights you never imagined:  a fancy-dress cow sunbathing in the meadows, a ballerina in full costume buying her lunch in a sandwich shop on Nicholson Street. Anything goes in August as Festival fever envelops the city; you’ll find it impossible not to get swept up in the atmosphere.

The choice is huge: from the Edinburgh Art Festival to the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo, the Edinburgh International Book Festival  to the Edinburgh International Festival  and – of course – the Edinburgh Festival Fringe (the largest arts festival in the world), no visitor to Edinburgh could complain that they’re short of entertainment opportunities.

Fringe Festival

The University of Edinburgh is a key partner of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. The central campus and many of the surrounding buildings are transformed during the month of August to become makeshift theatres, venues and bars. When a massive, purple inflatable cow - the ‘Udderbelly’, one of the most iconic performance spaces - appears in Bristo Square, you know that the Fringe is about to begin…

After you’ve been to a few performances and perhaps enjoyed a drink or two in a nearby bar, you may be in the mood to spend a night out on the town. Edinburgh won’t disappoint: the generous selection of clubs and venues is even more plentiful in August than in any other month of the year. The massive range of Festival gigs and performances - from club nights to DJ sets - in a variety of existing and pop-up venues is enough to keep any student happy.

Book Festival

If you’re not a party animal, you may prefer to take a relaxing stroll around Charlotte Square - the heart of Book Festival action - listening to a range of award winning authors talking about their work and their inspiration. Alternatively, the Military Tattoo is a must-see for any visitor who appreciates military music and performance. Tickets to the Tattoo have sold out in advance for the last decade (!) and so if you’d like to attend you’d better book early to avoid disappointment.

Summer course at the University of Edinburgh

The Summer School offers students the opportunity to study a range of interesting subjects in a city centre location at the heart of the Festival action…  For example, the Business in the Arts programme provides its students with the unique and enviable opportunity to witness Festival operations from the ‘inside’, during a four-week internship within an arts organisation affiliated with the Fringe.

The majority of our programmes starting in August are non-credit bearing, and cover topics which can complement and enhance the value of many subject area backgrounds. Business Communication and Social Media , Introduction to Sociology and Culture and Society in the Scottish Enlightenment are all popular choices with our students and – as they are two weeks in duration – they are a manageable addition to any student’s summer break.

During Festival season, the population of Edinburgh trebles. Therefore, if you are intending to visit Edinburgh during the month of August then it’s best to book early: accommodation in the city is in relatively short supply and can become incredibly expensive. However, if you wish to enrol upon a Summer School course, the Summer School will guarantee you a place in our on-campus accommodation if you book before the end of March 2016.