Yesterday evening, strong winds may have made you question gravity’s strength and the fine rain may have had you longing for a warm fire, but even this less than perfect atmosphere could not ruin the spirit of Christmas that has suddenly spread throughout Edinburgh.

The magical lights, the festive music, the happy buzz of the crowd, it is a feeling that only Disneyworld manages to rival. People smile as they sip mulled wine or queue to ride the Big Wheel next to the Scott Monument. Last night showed me an entirely new side of Edinburgh.

I have only been here since August, having moved over from Canada for school. Over the years I have visited Scotland, but rarely Edinburgh, and never at Christmas. The past few months have been an extended tourist experience for me, but last night was definitely my best experience yet.

The positive atmosphere and bursts of laughter made me want to stay there forever. Riding the giant wheel, in a spinning carriage, I was able enjoy the best view of the amazing, sparkly city below. I enjoyed sampling some cinnamon sugar ‘dinky donuts,’ which were warm and delicious, melting in my mouth instantaneously.

I absorbed the festive atmosphere while browsing the stalls, taking in the expanse of jewellery, bags, food and trinkets for sale. I bought some delicious coffee, which I enjoyed this morning. The stall had tons of flavours including cinnamon, Irish cream, blueberry muffin, caramel, butterscotch, vodka, chocolate and French vanilla. It was £3 for one pack  or 2 for £5, so obviously I bought two. The cinnamon coffee is still ready and waiting for me to try it out.

I’ve enjoyed the run up to Christmas in two different cities in Canada. In my hometown there is a big lighting ceremony when a Christmas tree in the centre of town is lit up, but it’s nothing like the event Edinburgh has put together. I have also seen the lighting ceremony in Ottawa, Canada’s capital, where Parliament is lit up, as are other areas of the city, but it was still nothing like last night’s events.

The Rt. Hon. George Grubb, the City of Edinburgh Council’s Lord Provost said, “Edinburgh really is the place to be to celebrate Christmas… the city will come alive as never before.” I couldn’t agree more.