Edinburgh Pollen Hotspots
Despite being a cosmopolitan city, Edinburgh boasts an oasis of tree-lined paths and parks. But unfortunately for hay fever suffers, these green spaces can be brimming with allergens. The main culprits are birch, elm, and sycamore, which tend to pollinate from early spring to midsummer. Grass and nettles can be problematic here, too.
While trees are pretty much unavoidable in Edinburgh, there are certain hotspots you may want to be wary of if you do suffer with hay fever. These include:
- Meadows Park: Located in the south side of the city, Meadows Park is home to one of the biggest green spaces in Edinburgh. But elm trees – a major source of hay fever allergies – make up 33% of trees here. The park also contains birch trees, which are renowned for being highly allergenic.
- Royal Botanical Gardens: This contains tree specimens from around the world, including horse chestnut trees, yew, and rowan.
- Princes St Gardens: Located in the city centre, Princes St Gardens is home to specimens of elm and ash, along with Chinese birch trees and Japanese cherry blossom.
To avoid a flare-up, try and steer clear of these areas during peak pollen season. You can use the Benadryl pollen forecast to check the pollen levels in Edinburgh before you head out. Generally, a count of 50 pollen grains or less is considered low, whilst anything above 100 is considered high.
Hay Fever-Friendly Activities in Edinburgh
While many of the city’s green spaces may set off your allergies, there are plenty of hay fever-friendly activities in Edinburgh:
Catch some waves
Edinburgh isn’t known for being a coastal destination, but there are numerous beaches and harbours dotted along the city. Portobello Beach – a traditional seaside pursuit with sandy stretches of beach – is situated in a charming East Lothian village. Additionally, Yellowcraig Beach lies along the East Lothian coastline, which is less than an hour drive east of the city centre.
Expand your knowledge of the past
There’s an array of museums in Edinburgh, but the National Museum of Scotland is arguably the largest and busiest, showcasing a range of exhibits from around the world. The Museum of Childhood also houses an expansive collection of retro toys and games and runs a series of interactive exhibits to keep the whole family entertained.
Get lost in art and culture
Edinburgh has been named one of the top cultural capitals, and it’s easy to see why. The city is home to a plethora of galleries and theatres, such as the National Galleries of Scotland. This contains a collection of fine art from the early Renaissance to the early 20th century.
Managing Allergies in Edinburgh
Currently, there’s no cure for hay fever1. But there are plenty of things you can do to manage your symptoms, including2:
- Keep track of pollen forecasts and stay indoors when the pollen count is high.
- Shower and change your clothes after being outdoors.
- Avoid hanging washing outside to dry.
Additionally, there are various treatment options which can help alleviate the symptoms of hay fever1:
- Antihistamines - helps to treat the symptoms of an allergic reaction.
- Corticosteroids - helps reduce swelling and inflammation.
You’ll also find a variety of allergy treatments in the BENADRYL ® range, including BENADRYL® Allergy Relief capsules and BENACORT® Hayfever Relief Nasal Spray – both of which can be bought from most major retailers.
However, if your symptoms don’t improve, or get worse after taking medication, you should speak to your GP1.
44% of adults in the UK suffer from an allergy3. For more tips on managing your symptoms, check out our allergy management guide.