Yes you can do Edinburgh Fringe Festival in a day with different age kids if you split up for different performances.
This is how our day at Edinburgh Fringe Festival went!
We decided to drive. We set off at 8am from Darlington getting into Edinburgh for 11, finding parking at a central car park. The train is a good option but driving worked out cheaper in the end as there was 5 of us.
There is a lot of choice at Edinburgh Fringe so here are some tactics we used to make it easier.
1 Download the Fringe app.
2 Book 2 shows before you go, 1 at lunch and 1 at tea time. Book the big shows as they can sell out fast. It also avoids big box office queues as you can use the fast pickup points for all your tickets.
3 Book by location, especially if you have different age groups. The big venues always get the best performances and you can be guaranteed a good show. The big 3 are Assembly Venues, Pleasance Courtyards and Circus hub. Underbelly is also good but tend to be older adult themed performances.
4 Vary your shows and keep it to 3. We looked for 1 comedy 1 drama and 1 circus. This leaves space for adventure, and Edinburgh itself!
5 Bring Drinks. There are plenty of food places but most of the drink places are bars. Soft drinks are very expensive but they do have free water available.
6. Head to Pleasant courtyard. We did this as we knew there would be many shows for children of all ages, as it has 7 stages and a great children’s area with an activity tent.
We split up for the different age specific performances.
1 adult took the 2 older boys to an older show, Fishbowl by an award winning French company that was a physical theatre, full of drama and black humour. 3 adults live back to back in tiny apartments and find themselves constantly in each other’s lives, often to hilarious effect. It was a little risque in places and not for younger audiences but the slapstick humour had us laughing out loud very often. We gave this 4 out 5.
I’ll Take You to Mrs Cole
1 adult took the younger child to see I’ll take you to Mrs Cole, which had great set and great imagination. A young child who gets carried away with their imagination and is often caught in unusual situations. Set in 1980’s Britain the soundtrack is brilliant! We gave this 4 out of 5 also.
A really good accessible and loveable family play that was great for all ages. A giant 6 foot man dressed as Bobo the hamster in pink dungarees, was the star of the show. There were jokes for the smaller children and definitely hidden jokes for adults! The set was lovely but it was the characters that all really shone. One of those shows that lifts you and you come out with a warm glow. Definitely 5 out of 5
Children of The Quorn
Our wildcard. We didn’t book this in advance and it was in a smaller venue under the cities main streets. It tickled our fancy for a new comedy sketch show and we took a chance. It was definitely worth it! The boys all laughed out loud throughout and loved every moment. The duo worked so well together and their slapstick moments were all highlights; the running jokes throughout that we should have started to expect, took us by surprise every time. The big surprise ending was cleverly done. They are ones to watch for the future.
4.5 out of 5
We chose filament as our circus choice. A circus with a story, a coming of age experience with relationships and friendships that twist and turn to a brilliant sound track. individual performers were very good and it was a great idea. Moments that stick out were the aerial work showing teen angst in all its highs and lows. It was good but we wanted more pizzazz and energy so we gave it 3 out of 5. There are very good circus acts out there like 360 and Drop and Roll, but they all sold out too fast.
We would recommend the Italian pizzeria, Pizza Posto on Nicolson Street.
The street food can be expensive for what it is (£5 for a hot dog) but for lunch we found this gem. Under £10 for an award winning fire oven pizza and soft drink! And just outside of one of the main fringe venues. They served us very quickly and it was gorgeous pizza!
We had a great time and left at 8, after filling our bellies with street food, to get back before it got too dark. Everyone had a fabulous day enjoying Edinburgh. Our little tip is the Edinburgh museum. It has a fantastic free view of Edinburgh from its viewing deck and loads of interactive fun in the technology exhibition.
Edinburgh Fringe festival is getting more and more family friendly each year and is now easily accessible because of the new app. It is now a brilliant family experience!
Complimentary ticket were provided for Joyce and I’ll Take You to Mrs Cole. All other tickets were purchased.