Don’t worry, I’ve not forgotten, ‘Romancing the City’ is back! This time we’re looking at two cities both very popular with tourists, Scotland’s capital city Edinburgh and the Eternal City Rome.
Okay, so maybe Edinburgh doesn’t scream out romance the way Paris does but that’s kind of the point. The Scottish capital is tragically overlooked by many when it comes to selecting a romantic break or worse still, it is only considered a ‘place to be’ during the Fringe festival (which is actually totally worth checking out, but Edinburgh is so much more than just comedy and street performances). People are really missing a trick with Edinburgh, it’s a unique city, with it’s gothic architecture and cobbled streets of the old town living in harmony with the hustle and bustle of the new town. Somehow visiting Edinburgh is like stepping back in time (but not in the same way as visiting an old Soviet city) the whole town has a strange, magical feel to it which makes it unsurprising that JK Rowling wrote much of her Harry Potter series in the city. But enough about the boy who lived, why is Edinburgh a perfect destination for couples? Because it’s creepy. Fully grown men dressed as pirates and hurling knives at innocent bystanders is scary, and that’s just the Fringe. Yes, that olde world vibe is more than just cobbles and the occasional haunted pub, Edinburgh is one of the most haunted places in Europe. You could be walking down the street, grey clouds above (95% of the time) with spires and higgledy-piddledy buildings looming overhead (seriously, have you seen the Scott Monument? *shudders*) when all of a sudden the haunting sound of bagpipes fills the air, you’ll scan the streets but you’ll never find the source of the music/wailing, cue holding hands and moving a little closer. The often sudden and torrential downpours that force you to take cover in dingy side streets lit only by lantern will force you to cosy up to your significant other and if you’re brave enough to embark on one of the city’s tours of the underground vaults (believe me, they’re scary) the sight of your partner waiting for you (they were too afraid of course) in the daylight could be enough to warrant a proposal there and then. If you do go during the Fringe festival you’ll come up with ‘cute’ couple ways of avoiding university footlight students thus strengthening your bond but ultimately branding yourselves ‘that annoying couple who went to the Fringe’.
Rome is one of those places you go to when you’ve been in a relationship for a while. It’s not the sort of place new couples go to (save that for Paris and the horrors it unleashes) it’s the place for those 2 year anniversary losers who feel the need to celebrate that neither has been dumped yet. Rome is everything Paris wishes it was, rustic, unspoiled and still authentically Italian (okay, so maybe Paris doesn’t want to feel Italian but you get the idea) Just look at the checklist, great food? Check. Beautiful weather? Check. Famous landmarks? Check. The added pizzazz of a religious leader living nearby? Check! Let’s face it, Rome is perfect, it’s a city that lets you stuff your face with the same old garbage you usually eat together on a Friday night in a romantic setting, what more could you want? You’ll be able to do everything you normally do on the weekend like watching the football on Saturday, (‘Oooh, isn’t this nice and authentic? Watching the Roma Lazio derby right here in the Eternal city’) and going to church on Sunday (‘Gosh don’t you just feel so, spiritual here in the Vatican?’) Nobody is going to hate anyone, there’ll be no arguments or fights all because you’re continuing your relationship like you’ve never even been away. As for brave new couples who dare to be ‘edgy’ and travel to Rome instead of Le Predictable Paris at the very least you’ll get a photo in front of the Colosseum.