The Royal Britannia

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By: Emily Lovasz

I can’t believe we are already on day three of Edinburgh! Today was probably one of my favorite days of the trip so far.

To start the day, we went to CodeClan to talk to Brian Baglow. Brian spoke to us about the history of video games and how new technology has helped games develop and how it affects society today. After meeting with Brian, our group went for a walk around the city to look at some of the inspiration for Harry Potter. J.K. Rowling is from Edinburgh and she wrote the books while she was here. She took names from Greyfriar’s Kirkyard and used them in the book. She also sat across the street at a cafe and wrote parts of the books.

IMG_0168After walking around the city, Bridget and I went to take a tour of the Royal Yacht Britannia. The Royal Yacht Britannia is the Royal Family’s yacht. This was definitely my favorite part of the day. Once you buy your ticket, you grab an audio guide and walk on the ramp to board the yacht. You start at the top of the yacht in the captain’s quarters and then onto the top deck of the ship. The Queen is usually seen waving to the crowds where I was standing.

After the top deck, you go down another floor and see the living quarters and bedrooms. The floor below that had the formal dining room and sitting rooms were the kids would play games and the family would sit with guests. The lower floors below the royal quarters were for the crew. We got to walk through the crew’s quarters and living area where they get to relax and eat meals. On the side of the ship, you can see where the Royal Family boards and disembarks the ship, although we weren’t allowed to walk on the ramp.

It was really cool to see where the Royal Family stayed while traveling around the world. Princess Diana stood with Prince Harry and Prince William on the ship years ago. A few years ago Kate Middleton and Prince William visited the yacht as well. I loved getting to see the family portraits that lined the walls and sat in frames on tables around the yacht.

To finish the day, we visited Kinloch Anderson. Kinloch Anderson is a company that started 150 years ago and they hand-make tartans, kilts, scarves and more. We got to learn about the history of the tartan and how different patterns belong to different clans in Scotland. The Balmoral Tartan is the tartan for the Royal Family that only they get to wear. They even had a piece of the material that was used for the Queen’s Piper! They showed us how much material is used to make a tartan and we saw the room where they are made. Most kilts take up to eight hours to make. Today was busy day learning about Scotland and the Royal Family. Tomorrow we are off to Glasgow to visit the BBC!

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