The city of Edinburgh is known for its buzzing nightlife, with a variety of bars, pubs, and nightclubs destined to give you a memorable night with your pals. There’s no shortage of cheap boozers for students on a tight budget, every night from Monday to Friday you’ve got a whole bunch of options to keep you partying all week!
If you’re a student studying in this colourful city, you’re going to want to know where’s best to get your drink on. To help you out, we’ve compiled a list of the ten best nightclubs in Edinburgh to get you ready for the big session. Rest assured, there are plenty more top venues on offer for students, and these are just a few!
1. Cabaret Voltaire
This venue has a passion for loud music! Located in the heart of Edinburgh’s Old Town, Cabaret Voltaire has been at the forefront of Scotland’s electronic music scene and club culture for over a decade.
The club showcases the best local and international DJ talent on a weekly basis! What’s really unique about this place is their ‘Barcade’, a 20 seater keyhole room equipped with retro SNES gaming systems, so if you fancy a break from boogying and want to chill and play a game instead, you can.
Cabaret Voltaire spans two floors, and pretty much looks like a cave. They have cosy illuminated booths perfect for chatting with your mates and a cool cocktail bar upstairs, which isn’t too far away from the dance floor you’ll be glad to know.
If you’re not into house music, upstairs have a separate DJ who plays more lyrical, disco music; this place really is perfect for everyone!
Everyone loves a good cocktail, I think we can all agree that they go down very easily, too easily in fact! At this club you can get ‘Disco Trees’ which consist of six or nine cocktails of your choice in a stack, this means you don’t have to keep getting up to go the bar and can keep on drinking which is a bonus.
We would personally recommend the ‘Unicorn Juice’ cocktail, it contains buckfast, Edinburgh raspberry gin, Edinburgh elderflower gin, vanilla, lime, and egg white…delicious.
So pop on your dancing shoes and head over to Carabet Voltaire. You won’t be disappointed!
2. Why Not
This club is super popular amongst students living in Edinburgh, with a spacious modern setting and a great garden with plenty of VIP deals. Based on the popular George Street, this club attracts many students in the week as well as locals fancying a sesh on the weekend.
With a whopping five cocktail bars and four dance floor party booths, this place is perfect for any occasion, whether that be a birthdays, graduation, or just a good old night out! The dance floor is absolutely huge, meaning you’ve got plenty of space to dance and mingle, as well as some of the best DJ’s in Edinburgh on the decks.
Amazingly, this venue also has an LED room consisting of 22,528 LED lights across the walls and ceilings, creating an amazing aesthetic experience of moving patterns. This room features 8 small tables that can be reserved with table service if you’re feeling classy and want to make the most of a special occasion.
The newest addition to Why Not has to be mentioned, The Vault seats up to 20 guests and can accommodate up to 40 guests at one time. With a custom built void sound system, these luxurious suede party booths are built with HD camera feeds so you can see what’s going on around the club and be extra nosey.
3. Liquid Room
Don’t let the sticky floors put you off! The Liquid Room is known as one of the UK’s leading venues for gigs and club nights, which is why you won’t want to give this place a miss!
They have worked with artists from pretty much every music genre to provide some unforgettable club nights. Mansion Wednesdays and Indigo Thursdays are the most popular student nights here, providing hours of entertainment and cheap drinks.
It’s located in a 19th Century church in the Old Town area of Edinburgh, which is a great little quirk in itself. The club has two floors and a balcony that overhangs the main dance floor, great to see if you can spot your mates terrible dancing.
There’s also a large outside space so if you fancy some fresh air after throwing some shapes, you can pop outside and take a breather.
4. The Hive Nightclub
Did somebody say cheap drinks? The Hive Nightclub on Niddry Street is known as the cheapest club in Edinburgh. The club venue that plays a diverse music range which is perfect for everyone! The great thing about this venue is students get free entry from Sunday-Thursday, which lots of cheap drinks deals too.
Hive mixes a playlist of indie hits, to R’n’B, to nu-metal and a big handful of cheesey pop. The well-known philosophy amongst partygoers ‘Hive till five’ allows clubbers to dance until the sun comes up, just don’t forget your greasy kebab and chips on the way home!
You can also register your university society at The Hive nightclub for exclusive use with plenty of drinks, what better way to mingle with your uni pals?
5. Sneaky Pete’s
If you want a loud, buzzing live music bar and dance club, Sneaky Pete’s is the place for you! Located in Cowgate, club nights start at 11pm in this very teeny tiny, loud venue.
This intimate nightclub has the capacity for 100 people, so prepare to get up close and personal with strangers! It’s definitely worth it because the atmosphere here is something you’ll never forget.
The club draws in a diverse crowd of music fans who love all different genres, once you step foot in this great little venue you’re guaranteed to have a fun care free night with some great tunes.
Open until 3am all week, you can party all night, everyday if you wanted, at this niche venue. Nirvana actually played here back in the 80s, adding charm and edginess to this small but charismatic place.
6. The Bongo Club
If you fancy something a little different, The Bongo Club is a nightclub, live venue, and all round artistic hub at Cowgate. Owned by local arts charity Out Of The Blue, this place is known for its creativity and uniqueness.
Bongo’s has a regular ‘I Love Hip Hop’ night every Tuesday, which is really popular amongst students who love to boogie. This place is known for some of the most notorious club nights from themes such as funk, soul, house, disco, and many more.
Midweek there’s midnight bass which is all drum and bass, jungle, bassline and grime, you’ve got soul funk and disco every Wednesday and Thursdays are usually kept open for one off events. Sound intriguing? Get your dancing shoes on and get down there!
7. Wee Red Bar
This trendy little student bar has a lot of pizzazz! Located in the grounds of Edinburgh College of Art, this venue has a massive selection of club nights and gigs on offer. This place is a much-loved Edinburgh venue and prides itself on fantastic sound quality.
It’s longest standing club night ‘The Egg’ has been going for over twenty years, consisting of themes like ‘David Bowie special’ until 3am every third Saturday of the month!
Lulu bar and nightclub has a classy vibe with really tasty cocktails, located on George Street in a Georgian building house this 21st century nightclub is certainly stylish and Insta worthy!
If you like to get dressed up for a night out, this is the perfect club for you. This venue features a Saturday Night Fever style dance floor, with plenty of comfy seating areas so you can have a drink and a break from dancing. The music is usually chart or R’n’B, perfect to sing along to after you’ve had a few!
For cocktails we would thoroughly recommend the ‘Amor Electro’, which consists of Liverpool gin, banana liqueur, pineapple juice, coconut cream, lime, and blue curacao…delicious! Also worth mentioning are the giant cocktail glasses to share if you fancy splashing out for a special occasion.
9. Club Tropicana
This is the ultimate sticky floor 80s nightclub! Located on Lothian Road in the heart of Edinburgh, you’re guaranteed a night full of laughs and throwbacks at Club Tropicana. Granted, this place isn’t always filled with loads of students, but don’t let that put you off! This place is filled with people of all ages having a dance and a sing along.
The drinks are lovely and cheap and it’s absolutely free to get in which is a double bonus! They have shots for only £1.50 each, and cocktails for only £4.50, guaranteed to have you stumbling home. Another unique feature is a back to the 80’s selection of drinks including Hooch and Red Stripe.
Although 4042 on Grindlay Street isn’t strictly a club, you can still hang out here with your mates until 3am!
This quirky little place is actually a ping-pong hall, which is a fabulous idea to pass some time with your friends and great for those with a competitive streak. For those who love to dance, don’t worry, there’s still an intimate dance floor ready and waiting for you to bust some moves.
The music is mainly hip-hop with a touch of house and some R’n’B; it also features a huge screen for sports fans.
What’s even better is the fact that ping-pong is free to play on a Monday, a great way to get rid of those Monday blues by thrashing your mates at a game!
4042 are known for their unique drinks, we’d have to recommend the slushy cocktails that are served in a disco ball, very extra.