Edinburgh Old Town
Activities

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Our most recommended Edinburgh Old Town Activities

  • City Sightseeing Edinburgh: 24-Hour Hop-on Hop-off Bus Tour

    1. City Sightseeing Edinburgh: 24-Hour Hop-on Hop-off Bus Tour

    Tour Edinburgh to your own schedule on the open-top sightseeing bus, and enjoy the onboard commentary that describes the history behind the lively city. Compare Edinburgh's Old Town, where families lived in cramped conditions and rubbish was thrown out of the windows, to the elegant Georgian New Town, with its 3 main streets and square at either end. Hear about the hangings that took place in the Grassmarket as you marvel at the impenetrable Castle Rock above you, and hear about historic attempts to capture Edinburgh Castle. Drive along the Royal Mile, which joins Edinburgh Castle to the Palace of Holyroodhouse. Use the 24-hour ticket to hop on and off as you please. With great visitor attractions, museums, galleries, and restaurants to suit every taste and budget, Edinburgh's got it all! Buses run every 10-20 minutes, making the following loop: Tour Stops: 1. St Andrew Square - Norths...

    Luckily we had a dry day so were able to sit upstairs. I always take a bus tour in a new city, great way to see all the sights. Our guide spoke clearly and had interesting comments to me. Most enjoyable

  • Edinburgh: Harry Potter Magical Guided Walking Tour

    2. Edinburgh: Harry Potter Magical Guided Walking Tour

    Enjoy a Harry Potter themed walking tour across Edinburgh. See the city where JK Rowling found inspiration for Hogwarts, her famous characters, and discover the place where she wrote the books. Have your Harry Potter trivia tested with an audio-visual quiz, and earn points for your house. Find out which Hogwarts House you’re in, and whether you’re a pure blood, a muggle, or a squib. Visit the Grave of Tom Riddle in Greyfriars Kirkyard, and pass JK Rowling’s golden handprints outside City Chambers. See all this and more on a magical 2-hour guided tour. Best of all, choose from either a small-group or private guided experience.

    My daughters had a lovely time exploring Edinburgh city along with gaining knowledge about the Harry Potter tour . The guide Kieran was very interactive and made the trip worth looking forward to. Thank you.

  • Edinburgh: Old Town History and Tales Walking Tour

    3. Edinburgh: Old Town History and Tales Walking Tour

    You will meet your guide on Edinburgh's iconic and historic Royal Mile, by the Statue of Adam Smith (one of Scotland's greatest thinkers). From there, your tour will be lead through the gorgeous winding streets that comprise Edinburgh's "Old Town". Covering everything from history to religion and folklore, this walking tour is an original tour of Edinburgh’s medieval Old Town. Your talented and entertaining guide will walk you through the streets and alleys of "Auld Reekie", while enthralling you with with its history, folklore, and tales! You will learn about the secrets Edinburgh is hiding and experience the incredible stories it has to tell, as your guide leads you through the city's long history. Topics included in the tour include Edinburgh's Mercat Cross, St. Giles Cathedral, the Scottish Enlightenment, Greyfriars Bobby, the Grassmarket, Harry Potter's inspirations, and many more...

    Excellent tour. Luca, our guide , was very knowledgeable and enthusiastic. I learnt a lot in the 2 hours.

  • Edinburgh: Harry Potter Walking Tour

    4. Edinburgh: Harry Potter Walking Tour

    Experience a little magic on a 2-hour walking tour of Edinburgh that is perfect for all fans of Harry Potter. Learn all the stories and secrets behind the best selling books by J.K. Rowling in the city where she wrote them. Visit the original sites that provided the inspiration for Hogwarts and the characters who dwelled within its magical walls. Stroll along the High Street to see where Diagon Alley came to life and where Lord Voldemort is buried. See the original Hogwarts School, and look at a virtual school assembly of its characters! Learn how Edinburgh’s own dark history of witches and wizards played a role in inspiring J.K. Rowling along the way. 

    A wonderful tour by the lovely (and very knowledgeable Jenn). I booked this tour as a surprise for my daughters 9th birthday and she absolutely loved it! Would recommend - 10 out of 10!

  • Edinburgh Ghosts & Gore Walking Tour

    5. Edinburgh Ghosts & Gore Walking Tour

    Your ghostly guide is the deceased Alexander Clapperton, who was an Edinburgh Cemetery Director during the 1840s. Mr Clapperton will take you on a light-hearted journey through Edinburgh's dark past, telling tales of tortures, plague, witchcraft and invasion as he leads you through the Old Town's atmospheric closes and courtyards. En route Mr. Clapperton will introduce some Edinburgh characters summoned from the mists of time - so be prepared for a few laughs and well as the odd fright! The tour price includes a copy of the bestselling 'Witchery Tales' book - essential bedtime reading and an ideal way to delve further into Edinburgh's darker history!

    We weren’t sure what to expect, but after just half an hour with “Mr. Clapperton” and his assortment of helpers, we had learned about witches, murderers, hangings and all the dark sides of Edinburgh folk. All with a genuine jollity and humour. I would recommend this tour to anyone. Excellent!!

  • Old Edinburgh's Gory Stories: Kids Underground Tour

    6. Old Edinburgh's Gory Stories: Kids Underground Tour

    Hear tales of stinking streets, terrible tortures and ghostly goings-on.  A daytime tour that will take you to some of the city’s most horrible haunts, including a visit to the famous Blair Street Underground Vaults. You’ll hear all about the creepy characters lurking in the past, and the hideous history of how people lived in 19th century Edinburgh. As you walk this city built on witch trials, body snatching and a gruesome past of torture, your expert guide will take you to the places where history lives. You will visit the winding closes of Edinburgh’s Old Town. Learn the meaning of "gardyloo" and hope you never hear it, grimace at the tales of Scottish witches and find out what treasure could be found buried in a 19th century graveyard (clue: it’s not gold and shiny). You’ll even hear what school children commonly packed in their school bags, other than their books. This was a time ...

    Naomi (or Rose which she joked about) was very knowledgable about the vaults and had the kids really interested in the story’s especially Jack the little boy and the cobbler. Well worth the money!! Sam, Izzy and Olly from Hull, England

  • Edinburgh: Scottish Whisky Experience with a Local

    7. Edinburgh: Scottish Whisky Experience with a Local

    Join a local host and taste your way around the whisky regions of Scotland, without leaving Edinburgh. You'll be paired with guides that are passionate about the place they call home and who choose to spend their free time sharing it with like-minded travelers matched to them. On this 3-hour activity you’ll sip a few of the finest single malts and blended Scotches. Discover the best of traditional methods and new, small batch producers. Visit a whisky cellar and a neighborhood pub that’s loved by locals. Sample a few wee drams – from peaty to oaky, and single malts to blended Scotch whiskies. Go with your host to discover the places that you won’t find in a guidebook and that make the city unique. Get some insider recommendations on the most authentic places to eat and drink on the rest of your trip.

    We spent a wonderful 3 hours with our guide, Doug, on a walking tour tasting whisky in Edinburgh. Doug gave us an immersion class in Scotch whiskey and threw in some Scottish history along the way. He made our journey enjoyable any relatable. We were so glad to get to know Doug and experience the things he loves about Edinburgh. We highly recommend booking him for any Edinburgh adventure.

  • Edinburgh: Secrets of Old Town Walking Tour

    8. Edinburgh: Secrets of Old Town Walking Tour

    Meet your guide, who is in costume, then set off on your adventure to discover the sinister side of Edinburgh’s Old Town. Walk in the footsteps of the city’s most prominent historical figures, and hear about the crimes they committed or the legacies they left behind. As you explore, listen to tales of villains, prisons, executions, and more. Highlights of the tour include a visit to Greyfriars Graveyard, and the opportunity to encounter the mysterious MacKenzie Poltergeist. Surviving that, move on to unveil the secrets of the infamous Royal Mile.

  • Edinburgh: Fun, Private, and Professional Photo Shoot

    9. Edinburgh: Fun, Private, and Professional Photo Shoot

    Experience Edinburgh like never before on a 30-minute, 1-hour, or 2-hour photo shoot. Work with a local professional photographer on an exclusive photo session that incorporates some of Edinburgh’s most beautiful backdrops. Your friendly personal photographer will create stunning photos of you in the Scottish capital as you discover its unique charms. The photo-documentary style of photography is unobtrusive, perfect for capturing special occasions or simply the everyday moments of your trip. Choose a location that’s best suited to your travelling style and personality and enjoy a photo session in one or more of the capital's most picturesque neighborhoods. There are also popular itineraries at your disposal. Be photographed next to Edinburgh Castle, Scotland's most famous landmark, along Edinburgh's medieval streets in the Old Town, or among the beautiful flowers in the Royal Botanic...

  • Edinburgh: Fantastic Creatures Treasure Hunt

    10. Edinburgh: Fantastic Creatures Treasure Hunt

    Discover Edinburgh's folk stories and myths on this interactive treasure hunt. Meet your guide at the City Chambers, where your game will begin. After a short introduction, get kitted out with all the tools you will need to complete the game. The kit comes in a bag that has all the clues and tools you need to work through and a map with a route to follow.

    Once the game begins, use the tools provided along with elements of the city to crack codes and move forward in the magic-themed game. If you get stuck, feel free to contact the game host at any time for help. 

    Wander around the streets of the Old Town to solve clues and discover famous landmarks from a unique perspective. The itinerary includes City Chambers, Edinburgh University, St Giles Cathedral, and of course the iconic Edinburgh Castle for perfect photo opportunities. If you're clever enough to make...

Other Sightseeing Options in Edinburgh Old Town

Want to discover all there is to do in Edinburgh Old Town? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Edinburgh Old Town

Ben, our guide took us through the streets of Edinburgh and regaled us with the history and linked them with the prominent structures of the City. His knowledge as well as humour kept us enthralled. An outstanding guide and an awesome experience.

I really enjoyed this tour ! I loved all the interesting facts we were told about J.K Rowling and the Harry Potter series and how Edinburgh was a huge inspiration for so many parts of Harry Potter! Our tour guide Mason was excellent!

Monique was fantastic, so informative and made the quiz super fun, got to pick our houses and was super fun seeing people of all ages taking part.

Good Harry Potter history and facts about JK Rowling and the series. Friendly guide and nice 2 hour scenic walk.

Very enjoyable! Our tour guide Mason was brilliant