Our Visit to the Edinburgh Street of Light

With the weather getting colder and Christmas soon approaching we were looking for some festive activities to take part in through December. So on a soggy Thursday night we took a trip through to Edinburgh to see the much talked about Edinburgh Street of Light running along the Royal Mile. So here are our thoughts on the winter wonderland.

For a start I’m never a fan places or events where sponsors need to have their name in the title but the Virgin Money Edinburgh Street of Light had been getting the fair plug on radio and online so we decided to book a ticket. Now all sold out (don’t worry they’re not…read on) we managed to get two free tickets before they all disappeared. With our show at 8.15pm we went straight from our work in Glasgow through to Edinburgh, a journey of just over an hour and went for dinner beforehand.

The Street of Light billed as… “stunning canopy of light, rising up to 19 metres high, listen to music sung and played by choirs from across Edinburgh synchronised to the lights.” It had certainly enticed us in and having caught the very end of the 6.30pm performance on our way to dinner we we’re excited to see what the Edinburgh Christmas group had in store for us.

Edinburgh Street of Light
Edinburgh Street of Light

Come our show time, when unfortunately it had started raining, we wandered under the Street of Light structure free from ticket barrier or steward check proving no tickets are required at all. After some standard introductions, we were treated to the music of the Edinburgh Royal Choral Union – recorded and played on loudspeaker rather than the live performance implied on the advertising and watched a lovely choreographed light display above out heads.

The Edinburgh Street of Light show

Despite the damp weather and the very icy wind, the show was very nice. Lasting around 15mins the light show did somewhat lose its appeal a little after the 5-10 minute mark and others did seem to start wandering off. The idea is a great one and if you happened to be in Edinburgh or nearby it’s worth a watch if you’re happy to make an evening of it like us. The music on our night was very traditional church hymns and, though upbeat and very well performed, may not be everyone’s cup of tea. Though it was a nice show I think our take away thoughts from the Edinburgh Street of Light was that it could have been done a bit better, perhaps more colour or Christmas pop rather than choral music and definitely live performances rather than recordings.

The Virgin Money Edinburgh Street of Light in full colour
The Virgin Money Edinburgh Street of Light in full colour

So if you’re around the Royal Mile at a Street of Light show time, make sure you stop by to have a look and then like us check out the nearby Christmas Markets at Princes Gardens. Good as a quick show but not really worth it as the sole purpose of a trip to Edinburgh.

Edinburgh Christmas Markets
Twinkly light of Edinburgh City Centre

The Virgin Money Edinburgh Street of Light will be on the Royal Mile until the 24th of December 2016 and is advertised as a ticket event with extra tickets going live the night before each set of performances. If planning to go nearer Christmas, when more crowds are likely, tickets may be required.

You can check out this year’s Edinburgh Christmas events and activities on the Edinburgh Christmas website.

Have you visited any festive light shows? Tell us about them in the comments!