Home Blog The Best Afternoon Tea in Edinburgh

The Best Afternoon Tea in Edinburgh

Afternoon tea is as quintessentially British as talking about the weather. Enjoying delicate finger sandwiches, lashings of cake and champagne on a gorgeous day in Edinburgh is hard to surpass. Edinburgh punches above its weight on choice and variety.

With over 2,800 restaurants and over 385 pubs to choose from for a population of about 500,000 with all cuisine represented, where do you start? We have chosen the best afternoon tea locations for you to enjoy.

The Classic Afternoon Tea

The Dome

Where: 14 George Street, Edinburgh EH2 2PF
When: Monday – Sunday 12:00 – 17:00
Price: £32 – £60.50 per person

No visit to Edinburgh is complete without a visit to The Dome. It is an institution and an attraction in its own right in the heart of the city’s New Town.

The Georgian Tea Room with its plush décor, crystal chandeliers, crisp white linen, black and gold wall panelling and cushioned ebony chairs set the scene for a memorable experience.

Tour Guide Tip: A Christmas visit is essential for the spectacular decorations that has made it famous and an attraction in its own right.

The Most Elegant

The Ivy on The Square

Where: 6 St Andrew Square, Edinburgh EH2 2BD
When: 15:00 – 17:00
Price: £32.95 – £42.95 per person

The Ivy is a modern British brasserie inspired by the original restaurant in London that was a favourite of Princess Diana. You can expect marble tables set in an art deco theme and a modern relaxed vibe.

The menu has the traditional classics served by attentive and friendly staff. Ask for a window seat on the First Floor overlooking St Andrew Square to enjoy the best views.

Tour Guide Tip: The Melville Monument opposite was erected in 1823 to honour Henry Dundas, Viscount Melville for his political contributions. This private park closes at 7pm each evening.

The Instagram Choice

Harvey Nichols

Where: 30 – 34 St Andrew Square, Edinburgh EH2 2AD
When: Monday- Sunday 14:00 – 16:00
Price: £35 – £45 per person

Forth Floor Harvey Nichols is a modern British brasserie located within the store where the beautiful people in Edinburgh shop. It is easily accessible via escalators that whisk you through the various departments including the Food Hall, sushi bar, chocolate lounge and champagne bar.

This roof-top restaurant offers unrivalled breath-taking views across the city with photo opportunities that will be the envy of your Instagram followers.

Afternoon tea here is a delight. You can take a break from a spot of retail therapy outside on the large terrace in the summer months and indulge in some people watching over an array of savoury and sweet delicacies.

Tour Guide Tip: Ask for a window seat overlooking St Andrew Square to enjoy the best views of the city’s skyline and the castle.

The Michelin Star Choice

The Balmoral

Where: 1 Princes Street, Edinburgh EH2 2EQ
When: 12:00 – 17:00 every day
Price: £65- £80 per person

The Balmoral Hotel has been one of Edinburgh’s most famous landmarks for over 100 years with its clock tower dominating the city skyline on Princes Street. Built in 1902, it has since had a plethora of famous guests including comedy duo Laurel and Hardy, Elizabeth Taylor, Sophia Loren and Linda and Paul McCartney.

Afternoon tea is served in the Palm Court with giant palm trees and comfy sofas and chairs in the centre and around the perimeter in a traditional dining setting.

Tour Guide Tip: An unusual fact here is that the clock is set a few minutes fast so people don’t miss their train at Waverley Station next to it!

The Unbeatable Afternoon Tea

The Colonnades

Where: The Signet Library, Parliament Square, Old Town, Edinburgh EH1 1RF
When: Wednesday – Sundays 11:00 – 16:30, open on selected Saturdays only
Price: £65 per person

The Colonnades is set in the heart of Edinburgh’s Old Town on the Royal Mile. This 19th Century building has been restored in a neo-classical style and the Lower Library offers a truly gourmet experience that is ranked as one of the top venues on TripAdvisor.

You can expect unusual savouries including haggis, neeps and tattie pie and spiced parsnip cheesecake complemented with sweets and scones including pink grapefruit posset and tiramisu dome.

The caterers have been granted a Royal Warrant of Appointment to Her Majesty the Queen for their catering services. If the best of Scotland’s produce is good enough for royalty, who are we to argue?

Tour Guide Tip: Edinburgh’s Royal Mile is actually 1 mile and 107 yards long. The Scots mile was abolished as a unit of measure by the 1824 Weights and Measures Act.

Enjoy the best of what Edinburgh has to offer on your own private sightseeing tour with Totally Tailored.
Let us give you the quintessentially Scottish experience in Edinburgh, the best afternoon tea on one of our private tours.

Some of Our Marvelous Partners

Luxury Tours
Corporate Tours UK
Tourist Guides
Personalized Tours
Private Tours
Private London Tours