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Edinburgh Old Town
Edinburgh Old Town

Edinburgh Old Town

Free admission
Old Town, Edinburgh, Scotland

The Basics

Most every visitor who sets foot in the city of Edinburgh will spend some time in Edinburgh Old Town, as it’s where many of the must-see landmarks and historic sites are located. Walking tours of the city typically begin on the Royal Mile and cover a wide array of themes, from history, mysteries, and photography to ghosts, Sherlock Holmes, and Harry Potter. Other sightseeing tours of Scotland’s capital, including tours by car, rail, and bus, also stop at Old Town attractions such as Edinburgh Castle and Canongate Kirk.

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Walking Tour of Edinburgh's Old Town - History and Tales
Walking Tour of Edinburgh's Old Town - History and Tales
$18.95 per adult
Traveler Favorite
Great Tour
We all really enjoyed the tour with Alistair who made it fun and interesting. Great value for money.
Irene_C, Nov 2021

Recent reviews from experiences in Edinburgh

star-5
Great tour
Arlene_C, Nov 2021
Walking Tour of Edinburgh's Old Town - History and Tales
Excellent trip despite the weather. Rosheine was a lovely and very knowledgeable guide and had loads of stories about old Edinburgh. Really enjoyed it.
star-5
Smashing tour!
Jeremy_K, Nov 2021
Walking Tour of Edinburgh's Old Town - History and Tales
I booked a walking tour with Ben from Little Fish Tours very last minute, as had a few hours to kill in the city. It was such a good tour! Ben has all the info on Edinburgh and was very funny. I would recommend it to anyone.
star-5
Knowledgeable Native Edinburg Guide
Lynn_M, Nov 2021
Private Walk: Edinburgh Old Town and New Town
Gerry is a native Edinburgh resident and knows everything about the area. We had four kids and came in on a late train, and he customized the tour to accommodate. He took us to some Harry Potter highlights, an overview of the castle, and helped us find a good restaurant to try haggis (even the kids liked it). He dealt with the kids needing bathroom stops and food. He has a friendly personality and did great with our family of eight.
star-5
Highly recommend
Suse_M, Nov 2021
Walking Tour of Edinburgh's Old Town - History and Tales
We thoroughly enjoyed this. Funny and interesting. Highly recommend it. Angus was knowledgeable and entertaining
star-5
Go on this tour
Stewart_J, Nov 2021
Walking Tour of Edinburgh's Old Town - History and Tales
We had a great walking tour around Edinburgh . Our guide was informative interesting and entertaining . Plenty of jokes and an honest opinion of the bagpipes most refreshing
star-5
Fantastic introduction to Edinburgh
Brian_S, Oct 2021
Private Walk: Edinburgh Old Town and New Town
We had an incredible time with Gerry! Despite persistent rain and wind, he made the day absolutely amazing. Great stories, history, laughter, hidden places, this tour had it all. You will love this tour, do not hesitate to book this tour.
star-5
Excellent Tour
Gabrielle_N, Nov 2021
Walking Tour of Edinburgh's Old Town - History and Tales
Alastair is a very knowledgeable and entertaining guide who galloped us through Scottish history, illustrated by fascinating monuments and sites along the way. Highly recommended. Thank you!
star-5
Wonderful tour
Lauren_W, Jul 2021
Walking Tour of Edinburgh's Old Town - History and Tales
An amazing walking tour around Edinburgh old town with beautiful sites and fascinating history. Our guide was friendly, enthusiastic, knowledgeable and also could give good recommendations for restaurants, pubs and attractions/things to do while in Edinburgh which I found very useful as a tourist. Overall a wonderful experience.
star-5
Informative tour of city
Jacklyn_M, Jul 2021
Edinburgh - Old Town Stories
Had a tour of the city with Edgar. He was very informative and knowledgeable about the city. If you want a tour that is a little of the beaten track with interesting facts then I would highly recommend.
star-5
Start with this tour before you wander around
kanghee_k, Nov 2021
Walking Tour of Edinburgh's Old Town - History and Tales
Very knowledgeable guide. Perfect for the first tour of the city as you learn so much about every history of the corner and building of Edinburgh
star-5
Old Town Edinburgh walking tour.
John, Jun 2021
Edinburgh - Old Town Stories
Fantastic walking tour in Old Town Edinburgh. Edgar our guide was very informative and entertaining with his brilliant stories. Recommend him 100%.
star-5
Wonderful Visit and Tour
Wanderer41488290148, Aug 2019
Edinburgh Old Town and Rosslyn Chapel
Our driver/guide Allan was excellent. Very knowledgeable and tailored our tour to what we were interested in. Highly recommend this tour!

Things to Know Before You Go

  • Edinburgh Old Town is a must-visit for all first-time visitors, especially culture lovers, sightseers, architecture aficionados, and history buffs.

  • Wear comfortable shoes as most of Old Town’s streets are cobbled.

  • Though steep streets, steps, and uneven surfaces are common, smooth sidewalks and curb cuts—including those on the Royal Mile—and accessible black cabs make large parts of Edinburgh Old Town navigable for wheelchair users and strollers.

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How to Get There

Getting to Old Town is simple: take the train to Edinburgh Waverley. From Edinburgh Airport, the Airlink 100 carries passengers to Waverley Bridge, which connects the Old Town and New Town.

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Trip ideas


When to Get There

The best time to visit Edinburgh Old Town is in summer (June through August), when the Edinburgh Festival, Fringe Festival, and Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo take place. Summer evenings are buzziest, as bars fill and people pour onto the streets. If you’d prefer smaller crowds and don’t mind bundling up for the cold, go in winter instead.

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The Closes and Wynds of Edinburgh Old Town

Visitors strolling down the Royal Mile can’t fail to notice the narrow alleys, known as closes, and side streets, known as wynds, leading off from the main thoroughfare. The darkened cobbled closes typically lead to private courtyards and would once have had gates, allowing access only for those with keys. Look out for Brodie’s Close, named after William Deacon Brodie, a respected 18th-century craftsman and notorious thief. Mary King’s Close, situated under the Royal Mile, is now a popular visitor attraction.

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