New for 2024, cake making classes on throughout the summer at the fantastic Secret Herb Garden Cafe!

Whether you are a cake making novice or just looking to build on your current skills, there’s a wide range of dates and course topics to suit all needs and purpose.

Classes are held at the Cafe in the relaxing environment of the glasshouses and professional staff are on hand to give advice and tips wherever and whenever they are needed. The team have designed a series of classes, from all day to evening and morning sessions across a range of baking disciplines from emerging trends to timeless crafts.

Classes run on till September and are ideal for friends, corporates, for a gift or treat for yourself.

Check out all options now and you can book online. The following links give you all the information you may need

Information and Booking

Facebook @cakehouseatthesecretgarden

Instagram @cakehouse_secretgarden


Dalhousie Castle and Aqueous Spa – May Spa Offers

At Dalhousie Castle and Aqueous Spa – Indulge in Pure Bliss with Ytsara Coconut Head Massage!

Revitalize your mind and pamper your hair for just £45.50 (RRP £65)!

Treat yourself to 40 minutes of relaxation as we target those stress hotspots in your shoulders, neck, and head.

Our massage isn’t just about relaxation—it’s about holistic wellness. By focusing on pressure points linked to your body’s chakras, we promote energy flow throughout your entire body.

Valid from 1st to 31st May 2024, seize this opportunity to treat yourself!

Contact us at 01875 820153 or email spa@dalhousiecastle.co.uk to book your session now.

Don’t miss out on this luxurious experience

Friday May 3 to Sunday, May 12th at Dalkeith Palace

Come and visit the Inception Art Show at Dalkeith Palace. Now in its 3rd year. The exhibition doors are open until Sunday 12 May. Come and explore the impressive collections from sculptors, artists, photographers and painters exhibiting within the historic cultural Dalkeith Palace.

Over 10 days art lovers will have access to the artists and their work with an inspiring additional programme of Palace tours, an online charity auction and an exciting Family Day featuring workshops and demonstrations for all ages.

Tickets are bookable
Find out how to book tickets here – https://www.dalkeithcountrypark.co.uk/event/inception-art-show/

Easter at Peggyslea Clydesdales

Here at Peggyslea we love hosting fun and educational events for kids.

This year for Easter you can bring you kids along to have to chance to interact with a variety of different animals and gain new knowledge along the way.

There are different activities everyone can get involved in such as an easter egg hunt, bouncy castle, grooming the clydesdales, carriage rides (paid), painting, colouring in and many more activities involving different animals.

The event is on 29th March – 1st April from 12pm-3pm you are welcome to come and go as you please and stay for as little or as long as you would like. There will be food vans on site to keep you going throughout your visit.

To book please follow this link


What’s on over Easter in Midlothian – Family Days

Spring has sprung and there are lots of activities going on to enjoy outside this month, as well as inside some of our key attractions. Here are our egg-stra special highlights for family fun in Midlothian.

Dalkeith Country Park -There’s lots happening across the park from Easter craft workshops to Fort Douglas Easter Festival . Find out more and mark the dates -Easter Events | Dalkeith Country Park

Go Ape, Dalkeith Go Ape Dalkeith Country Park | High Ropes Courses | Go Ape
As Easter break approaches, envision outdoor excitement and ziplines on the horizon!

Peggyslea Clydesdales Find out more
Carriage rides with Clydesdale horses, and meet many of the farm animals up close! Just lots of fun activities laid on for all the family over the Easter weekend

Secret Garden Distillery – Easter Community Day – Sunday 31st March
All welcome, free of charge – with easter egg hunts and children’s crafts in this lovely location Find out more

Glencorse Centre
Easter Eggstravaganza, Saturday 30th March Find out more
Bouncy Castle, Crafts and more!

Ryze Ryze Edinburgh
Check in with Ryze for all their Easter holiday activities and fun filled bouncing plans. Find out more

National Mining Museum Scotland WHATS’ON at the National Mining Museum – Easter Wreath making; Victorian Activities Drop in; Pit pony ceramic painting and more fun stuff. Find out more

Rosslyn Chapel – Children go free at Rosslyn Chapel – Find out more

Easter Lunches, super snacks, chocolate treats, family occasions and more!

Discover some great Midlothian places for family occasions to eat and enjoy yummy Easter lunches, snacks and chocolate treats IDEAS HERE
Melville Castle Hotel
Restoration Yard
The Craigie and The Royal Hotel. Penicuik
Penicuik Storehouse
The Original Rosslyn Inn
Secret Herb Garden Café
Dalhousie Castle

Rosslyn Chapel and The Da Vinci Code Effect !

Da Vinci Code impact at Rosslyn Chapel – 21 years after publication

Visitors to Rosslyn Chapel, in Midlothian, are still strongly influenced by its role in The Da Vinci Code according to new research undertaken to mark the 21st anniversary of the book, which was first published on 18th March 2003.

Research carried out by Shanks Research Consultancy with 6,677 Chapel visitors between March 2023 and March 2024, reveals that –

49% of visitors said that Dan Brown’s novel, and the subsequent film, was a factor influencing their decision to visit the historic site.
72% of them had read the book and seen the film.
43% of them said that The Da Vinci Code was either a ‘very important or important’ influence.
Ian Gardner, Director of Rosslyn Chapel Trust, said ‘It is remarkable that The Da Vinci Code continues to have such a strong influence on our visitors, 21 years since it first appeared. It has had a huge impact on the profile of Rosslyn Chapel and has significantly increased levels of visitor numbers, which rose from 38,141 to 79,916 after the book was published and to more than 176,000 when the film was released. This has helped us complete a comprehensive conservation project at the Chapel and undertake a major programme of restoration and repair at Rosslyn Castle, enabling future generations to appreciate these unique buildings.’

In 2023, the Chapel welcomed 142,211 visitors, as numbers started to increase following the pandemic.

In the story of The Da Vinci Code, the main characters, Robert Langdon and Sophie Neveu, investigate a murder in the Louvre and, in doing so, follow a set of clues to unravel a mystery to find the Holy Grail, taking them to London and then to Rosslyn Chapel. Since publication, the novel has been translated into 44 languages and has sold more than an estimated 80 million copies, making it one of the best-selling novels of all time.

Neil Christison, VisitScotland’s Regional Director, said: ‘Rosslyn Chapel is one of Scotland’s iconic attractions and a hugely important driver of tourism in Midlothian. The Da Vinci Code was a global phenomenon and it’s wonderful that the book and film are still influencing visitors to this day. This new research chimes with our own visitor surveys which continue to show that film and television productions are still referenced by visitors, sometimes decades, after their initial release.’

He continued: ‘Scotland’s historic sites have been the backdrop to many productions, and this is a great example of the positive impact of screen tourism, which can help support the conservation of our amazing built heritage.’

Rosslyn Chapel was founded in 1446 by Sir William St Clair. The beauty of its setting, in rural Midlothian, and the mysterious symbolism of its ornately carved stonework have inspired, attracted an intrigued visitors and artists ever since. The Chapel is open to visitors throughout the year.

Dan Brown has previously said: ‘When I decided to write The Da Vinci Code, I knew that its finale would have to take place at the most mysterious and magical Chapel on earth – Rosslyn’.


Released 18 March 2024

Ian Gardner

Director, Rosslyn Chapel Trust

T. 0131 440 2159


National Mining Museum Scotland – Weddings are back

Weddings are back at the National Mining Museum Scotland! Their diary is open for bookings and to get in touch call 0131 663 7519 or email Reception@nationalminingmuseum.com

The National Mining Museum cater for small and intimate weddings through to grand celebrations whether they are humanist, civil or religious ceremonies.

The venue can host up to 80 guests for a ceremony and 120 guests for wedding ceremony, drinks reception, formal dining and evening celebrations.
See website for wedding brochure

Further updates on the website also for news and events

Unique and wonderful!

See Midlothian tourism website for our other exclusive hire venues & ideas for weddings

Stewart Brewing – Brewery Tours

Did you know there were tours at the Brewery on Friday nights ?

Book into Stewart Brewing for a behind the scenes brewery tour – By Straiton Shopping area and ever so close to Edinburgh with easy access!

Included in the price –
Behind the Scenes Discovery at this award winning Brewery
Free beer on arrival
Opportunity to try different Tops

And of course enjoy great fun with friends. Something different to do and ideal as a gift too.

With our Beer and Pizza restaurant on site and free beer on the tour, you can have a tasty, fun Friday night with us!
Head to our website to book your slot! You could even book yourself a table at Beer and Pizza too!

The Experience runs with pre-booking essential
Find out more here

New lighting shows up Rosslyn Chapel’s green credentials

New lighting, which has just been installed inside Rosslyn Chapel, will enhance the visitor experience and highlight the Chapel’s commitment to green tourism.

The new lights illuminate twelve of the Chapel’s arches and will help visitors appreciate more of the Chapel’s medieval stone carvings, which were previously in shadow. The LED lights have been specifically made for the Chapel and support Rosslyn Chapel Trust’s aim of working in a more sustainable away.

Ian Gardner, Director of Rosslyn Chapel Trust, said: ‘We hope that this new lighting will really enhance a visit to the Chapel, particularly over autumn and winter, and for evening visits and events. These LED lights are environmentally-friendly and have been specially designed for us by a very local Midlothian company, Stoane Lighting, in Loanhead. Rosslyn Chapel Trust is trying to work in a more sustainable way, as well as providing a high-quality experience for visitors, and this new initiative fits very well with those aims.’

More information on the Trust’s approach to working sustainably can be found here
Among the measures in place, the Chapel has a biomass boiler and rainwater harvester, and visitors are encouraged to use public transport where possible.

Thinking of visiting the Chapel then plan your visit here . It is open daily!

Photo: Guide Jenny Beddoe-Stephens shows off new lighting which has just been installed in Rosslyn Chapel, in Midlothian.

Credit – Rob McDougall

What’s new at The Old Mill House? – Unique guest concierge service

The Old Mill House, Dalkeith is at your service every step of the way with its new unique Concierge Service

New for 2023 is their Concierge Service which has played a vital role elevating guests’ experience. Sally (the owner), is dedicated to delivering the service personally. She’s taken on the role of ‘personal wizard’, a genie on speed dial, ensuring every guest’s stay is extraordinary and their needs are met seamlessly.

What’s more, the service is complimentary, yes, you read that right. Sally’s enviable little black book of contacts gives her direct access to her most trusted hospitality partners and suppliers.

The benefits of the Concierge Service for guests are:

Arranging airport transfers in our preferred partners luxury vehicles
Food shopping, sourcing the finest fresh and local organic produce. Managing dietaries and preferences
Confirming the services of Jesse our private chef, including menu guidance and recommendations
Pre-ordering wine from one of Scotland’s premier wine merchants
Recommendations for places to eat and drink for lunch and dinner
Personal itinerary planning
Organising golf trips and whisky tastings.

We’re super pleased to report that guests really value our new concierge service, it’s been extremely well received and is going down a treat!
said Sally Dewaard



“Looking for the best birthday of the year?”

Choose Ryze, just outside Edinburgh for fantastic trampolining experiences for all ages on their massive trampolines and offering some amazing and memorable party packages and variety combinations.

“With a party host to take care of everything on the day, all you need to do is enjoy watching your little one have SO MUCH FUN! Choose one of the Ryze party packages:”
“Book your bouncing fun birthday on www.ryze.co.uk or contact our events coordinator on 07739 383561 / events@ryze.co.uk”

All you need to know about the party packages and pricing here
* We bring you a little flavour of what’s on offer below*

What’s life without a bounce!


Penicuik Storehouse presents Pizza Sundays

On the last Sunday of every month starting from 27th August – it will be Pizza Sunday at Penicuik Storehouse.
Located just outside Edinburgh on Penicuik High St

Just something new to add to the many activities going on around the Storehouse. Have you been to Penicuik Storehouse? More information here

A community food store, an ethical shop, a gallery, a cafe with delicious coffee, scones and meals aswell as a fabulous community space and more.
Good for Food: Good for people and Good for the planet.

See website for opening times

Midlothian Council supports developments at Secret Garden Distillery

Midlothian Council supports Secret Garden Distillery’s Transition to Greener Practices

The Secret Garden Distillery, a prominent local gin producer, is nearing completion of its plans to achieve Carbon Zero status by 2026 and aims to become Carbon-Negative by 2030. As part of their ambitious carbon-reduction goals, the distillery has undertaken various initiatives, including the establishment of a Midlothian Council-funded borehole at their garden site.

Midlothian Council has been actively assisting local businesses in adopting environmentally friendly practices through the Local Authority COVID Economic Recovery Fund provided by the Scottish Government, with a total investment of £80 million.

Imogen Armstrong, one of the Directors of Secret Garden Distillery, emphasized the significance of water usage in their operations, stating, “We use a substantial amount of water for gin production and maintaining our gardens. The energy consumed by the water industry in the UK contributes up to 6% of carbon emissions. Our objective was to reduce our water footprint, and the borehole provides us with a sustainable and self-sufficient water source utilizing natural resources located beneath the ground.”

Although the water source is situated 12 meters below the ground level, the LACER fund from Midlothian Council facilitated the construction of a protective shed for the pumping equipment and the necessary groundwork to connect the borehole to the distillery’s garden site. The high quality of the water extracted from the borehole requires a less extensive cleaning and filtration process compared to mains water. Secret Garden Distillery estimates that this shift will result in an annual reduction of 9% in carbon emissions, contributing to its overall sustainability objectives.

Imogen further added, “Now, both our stills and our 7.5-acre garden are supplied with water pumped from this very shed. We may be biased, but we believe it tastes better than Evian! By reducing our carbon footprint, we have not only achieved our environmental goals but also enhanced the flavour of our gin. It’s a win-win situation.”

To allow visitors to experience the taste difference first-hand, the Secret Garden Distillery Cafe & Bistro, connected to the new water supply, invites individuals to explore the gardens and enjoy their offerings.
Gin tours and tastings available at this unique site.

Midlothian Council remains committed to supporting local businesses in their transition towards sustainable practices. Through the Local Authority COVID Economic Recovery Fund, the council continues to promote eco-conscious initiatives that contribute to a greener and more resilient economy.

To find out more information about The Secret Garden Distillery, please visit secretgardendistillery.co.uk


Pentlands welcome new Cycle Hire company

Pentland Cycle Hire has opened in Midlothian.
Opening now for the season is great for the region, offering locals and visitors the opportunity to explore the lovely countryside and peaceful open spaces on two wheels. A healthy and fun way to spend some free time and holidays.

“Pentland Cycle Hire offers cycling for all ages and makes it accessible for all the family with our Kids Go Free offer. We’re encouraging people to explore a new area, try cycling again if it has been a while and get fresh air while enjoying the freedom of cycling”.
says owner and local entrepreneur Jordan Reid

Kid friendly
Ask about summer kids’ club
Jordan is committed to cycling being affordable for families and kids go FREE with adult rentals too.

How to hire a bike with Pentland Cycle Hire
Based at Flotterstone Inn Car Park on the Biggar Road mountain bikes and children’s bikes are available for hire from Friday to Sunday.
Booking in advance is recommended however on the day rentals are possible
Jordan has maps and suggested routes and is on hand to give advice and top tips.

Look for the yellow signs – can’t miss them!

Going forward Pentland Cycle hire is looking to develop E bike options also.

It is a great boost to the Midlothian tourism offering – all so close to Edinburgh for days out too.

For all up to date information and any business developments
Go to Pentland Cycle Hire website
Email – pentlandcyclehire@gmail.com

National Mining Museum Scotland goes green

A whole new world for visitors to explore renewable energy and engineering was officially opened on Friday 14th April at National Mining Museum Scotland. The Green Zone, which is aimed primarily at families, connects three adjacent sections within the grounds of the museum into a hub of interactive fun learning and play. The Green Zone consists of an Interactive Zone and Energy Lab, Play Park and new Activity and Events Space. The themes running throughout cover the origins of fossil fuels, renewable energy, climate change, ecology and biodiversity.

Visitors to the museum will have access to the interactive zones as part of their admission ticket. Children can let off steam in the newly refurbished Play Park with new weather and biodiversity activities for all ages to enjoy. Like a scientist, they can investigate new energies and technologies in the Energy Lab and explore engineering and climate change in the Interactive Hub.

Additionally, the new Activity and Events space will be a facility for the museum’s family learning activities and available for hire for community events and children’s birthday parties.

Funding for the new Green Zone has come from Museums Galleries Scotland, the People’s Postcode Trust and the National Mining Museum Scotland.

Lucy Casot, CEO of Museums Galleries Scotland, who officially opened the space, said: “MGS is committed to understanding how to enable our museums and galleries to achieve positive climate action. We know awareness of climate change and the passion to take action is already high amongst our sector. We are delighted therefore to be in a position to provide the financial support needed to ensure steps towards sustainability and climate action is made possible at NMMS.

“For children in particular who are less familiar with the history of coal mining than older generations, the Green Zone will help develop an understanding of the evolution of the energy industry and the increasing importance of renewable energy in Scotland.”

Mhairi Cross, CEO of National Mining Museum Scotland said: “Through our recent involvement in the Climate Beacon project we know that many mining communities feel excluded from climate conversations. Our new Green Zone creates a tangible link from the story of coal to the story of Scotland’s energy transition towards renewable energy that is fun, interactive and memorable. We are extremely grateful to Museums Galleries Scotland for funding this extremely important project.”

The Green Zone is open 7 days a week and is fully wheelchair and pushchair accessible.

Notes to Editors

The wonderfully restored Lady Victoria Colliery is a Five Star visitor attraction and a recognised collection of national significance. First opened in the 1890s, the ‘Lady’ became known as one of the first Scottish super pits and today is home to the extensive collections of National Mining Museum Scotland.

For further information please contact Gillian Rankin, Marketing and Events Manager at National Mining Museum Scotland on 0131 663 7519 or email marketing@nationalminingmuseum.com