Top five quick weekend escapes from the Bubble

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After travelling miles to reach this remote little corner of Fife, the natu­ral thing for St Andrews students to want to do is leave straight away and get back to the real world where towns have more than four streets and cinemas show more than five films. This article is your guide to a quick escape from the Bubble, whether you’re looking for a couple of hours break or a weekend away.

5. If you’re not in the mood for a train journey to Edinburgh, Dundee (just a quick bus ride from town) is probably the closest you’re going to get to a cosmopolitan day out. As well as being home to plenty of shops, Dundee also has two cin­emas; fantastic news for film fans who can’t see the new movies they want in St Andrews.

4. If you are looking to see ‘the real Scotland’ and are that strange sort of person who enjoys exercise, a walk along the Fife Costal Path may appeal. The trail runs for 117 miles all the way from Newport-on- Tay, through St Andrews to North Queensferry at the end of the Forth Bridge and is split into seven differ­ent walks, taking you through the most stunning areas of Fife. Take a picnic, make a day of it, just don’t try the whole thing in one go.

View over the Firth of Tay to Dundee

3. For people like myself who pre­fer to do their walking while holding shopping bags or admiring artwork, Edinburgh is the place to be. Just an hour on the train from Leuchars Station and two hours by bus from the centre of town, it’s easy to get down and back in a day (although you’d be hard pressed to experience the city properly in that time). The first time I visited Edinburgh from St Andrews the amount of shops there boggled my tiny Bubble-warped mind, but to reduce Edinburgh to a shopping trip would be to do it a disservice. There are so many won­derful galleries and museums (some of which are free!), as well as some stunning architecture; find a bench in the Princes Street Gardens and soak up the culture, or just have a nice coffee.

2. Even though it’s in Edinburgh I believe my next escape requires its own paragraph: Edinburgh Zoo. At £13.50 for a student ticket it might be a bit on the expensive side, but if you do decide to visit it’s entire­ly worth it. I defy your heart not to melt as you watch the penguins chasing bubbles the keepers have blown for them, but if you want to see the pandas you have to pre-book a viewing time.

1. My last escape takes us two and a half hours out of St Andrews by train and out of Scotland altogeth­er. Yes, Dundee and Edinburgh are closer geographically but nowhere comes close to Newcastle’s reputa­tion when it comes to a night out. If nightclubs and bars are your thing it is really worth a trip down, and an added bonus of a night on the Toon is that the next day you’ll be more than ready to head back to the peace and quiet of St Andrews.

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