Drive in Movies at Edinburgh Airport

Drive-in Movies at Edinburgh Airport - opening weekend - Sunshine on Leith credit Lloyd Smith

It’s a grey and drizzly Thursday night and we are off to the airport, which is always the most exciting of journeys (and very much the happy place of all the Mini Travellers team)  Are we off on our annual trip to Provence?  No, we’re off to the movies..  the Drive-In to be precise, to see ‘Sunshine on Leith’; well if that doesn’t cheer up a dull day, I don’t know what will.

This year the famous Edinburgh Festivals have been cancelled, some of them are finding new ways to connect with their audience and for those of us who are missing them enormously; it’s given us a glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel in our new socially distanced world.  Edinburgh International Film Festival has a brilliant solution: a giant screen with a great schedule of classic much-loved films, some strategic parking, on site loos and refreshments and the occasional plane taking off in the background – it’s the perfect package. 

I decided it would be a bit too much for 3 year old Merle, so we left her at home with dad, so Poppy (12), Jonah (10) and I packed our popcorn and drinks and made our way to the airport.  It was all well signposted and easy to find, and although we all had a little look of yearning in the direction of Departures, it was exciting to head up beyond the car parks and past all the planes to the Drive-In.  Once we had been parked and tuned our radio into the film soundtrack, we headed to Alandas Ice Cream Parlour for a pre-film ice cream and waited for the fun to begin. There were also meal options on offer with fish and chips, lobster rolls and crispy battered king prawns from Alandas Scottish Seafood pop-up and Cold Town Beer were delivering burgers and nachos as well as their award-winning beers and soft drinks  direct to customers cars, which looked very popular.

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As the rain poured down we wondered if we’d be able to see out of the flooded windscreen, but happily the rain stopped as the credits opened.  For those who haven’t seen the film, it’s a feel-good musical based around the songs of the Proclaimers.  I sneaked a look in some of the surrounding cars; I wasn’t the only mum embarrassing her kids by singing along.  The film progressed with the background sound of my children’s constant eating (including free oat bars handed in the window by Nairn’s) and from time-to-time Jonah would exclaim: “Look a plane taking off – WOW!” The sound was excellent (I had been a bit worried) and our view was fantastic.  We’d taken the advice on the booking email and brought a couple of blankets and cushions, which was nice for extra comfort.  It was a perfectly lovely way to spend the evening.

The fun continues into the bank holiday weekend with highlights including: Mary Poppins Returns (U Sat 29th at 10am), Princess Bride (PG, Sun 30th at 1245pm) and Up (U, Sun 30th 1030am) all cracking all-rounders for families. 

Then in September Drive-In Movies will be back with a brilliant line-up (announcement very soon) Thursday 24th – Sunday 27th September with family favourites, blockbusters and late night cult classics all promised.  Keep an eye on for all the details.

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