TJ's Top Tourist Tips each Tuesday 23/02/09

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by TJ, News Team Wizard

“Each week I’ll bring you my guide to the best tourist attractions in and around Edinburgh”.

This week: The Tram mock-up, Camera Obscura and Blair Drummond Safari Park

TRAM  MOCK-UP Starting on Monday the 23rd of February until Saturday the 14th of March you will be able to look into the future and see a mock-up Tram, just like the real deal when it rolls out in 2011.

This prototype will be placed in front of Jenners Department Store. Believe me, the lines of people wanting to get into this Tram fever will be enormous.

Hate it, love it, whatever, you can not ignore what a jump into the future this will be for all of us.  Some folks like to say, “We had the trams here before”, but this is like comparing the Loch Ness Monster to a Teddy Bear.

To quote a youthful worker at Jenners, “It is going to be good for Edinburgh, and it will be easier to gain access along Princess Street”

It’ great to know we will not be mired down by the past, as many cities in Scotland want nothing new to happen. CAMERA OBSCURA

is oldest purpose built visitor attraction in Edinburgh has been there since 1853.  Just a few steps from the castle you will bump into this make believe magical place. Some 400 of these places are scattered all over Europe, and much more than that around the world.  On my visit I was greeted by the present day manager, Mr. Tony Millar.  After you climb to the 5th level you will see this camera thing that let’s you see a great view of Edinburgh, when you take the 10 minute show.

The leaflets on the roof explain it all and are printed in 7 languages.  The best for me was on the 3rd. level the hologram room. Hologram comes from the Greek language, and simply means holo-whole, gram message.

Opening and closing hours vary depending on what time of year it is, Pick up a leaflet in town, or via the internet

This site is not advisable if you can not climb stairs there is no elevator on the premises.

BLAIR DRUMMOND  SAFARI  PARK If it’s animals you like this is the best place for you, just like the name states. You can get there by car, tour bus, on just plain walk up the entrance like I have several times.  The best part is if you are a walk up you get the VIP treatment, and are driven right into the animal enclosure by a park ranger, who explains the names of the animals and lots more.

After this you can look at them from behind the large fences and do many other things, including the seal show, bird show, and see the gorillas on an island. From a boat that encircles the big guys. (Gorillas hate water and will not leave their island).

Lions proudly take the number one spot and are the flash of this show.  In the off season when the snow comes down the lions are in 7th heaven.  Playing and chasing and rolling in the white stuff.  I would think an animal born in a hot climate would hate the snow.  Not so, but you won’t see wild lions in Siberia either.  My wish is to some day see a picture of these snowy lions.

Open season begins 21st of March and lasts until the 2nd of November.  Just a 15 minute bus trip from Stirling gets you there.  Need more info…. Speak to the friendly people on 01786841456 any time of year during office hours.

Have you been to any of these tourist attractions?

Have you any top tourist tips?

Leave your comments below…

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