Lantern-Led tours, Real Mary Kings Close


Edinburgh offers a fantastic range of tours to acquaint, educate, entertain and terrorise, all in equal measures. So, if you fancy a different exploring the city from a different angle, take a look at some of these fantastic city tours.

Distillery and brewery tours

Spirit Still at Holyrood Distillery

Whether you’re a whisky, gin, rum or beer fan, or simply interested in the magical science behind the process of brewing and distilling, there are numerous places in the city you can visit as part of a guided tour (and sample a few glasses!)

Find out more about Distillery and Brewery Tours in Edinburgh

Stadium tours

Murrayfield, South Stand

The home of Scottish Rugby, Scottish Gas Murrayfield Stadium is one of the largest sports venue in Scotland and has played host to some of the world’s greatest rugby moments. Lasting approximately 90 minutes, tours of this iconic venue include access to the locker rooms, walking through the famous tunnel and taking in the pitch where many fierce battles have been fought.

Fans of Heart of Midlothian Football Club (Hearts) can experience exclusive behind the scenes access on a family-friendly and accessible tour of the club’s park. Visit the first team changing rooms, the tunnel, dugouts and see how match time is captured in the media suite.

Hibernian Football Club (Hibs) offer fans the opportunity to immerse in the rich and cultured history of the team’s history. See rare Hibs shirts and artefacts, before exploring the stadium. 

Bike tours 

A wee pedal bicycle tour passing Arthur’s Seat.
©A wee pedal on tour passing Arthur’s Seat.

If you’re keen to have a low carbon footprint experience, why not explore the city, and beyond, by bike?

Passing by many historical attractions and travelling the cities superb network of bike paths, Ricky’s Bicycle Tours start in the city centre and take a leisurely cycle to Leith or Portobello. Edinburgh Bike Tours offer half and full day tours, taking in the city’s city centre and coastline, while at the Tartan Bicycle Company, cyclists can choose from guided or self-guided tours in and around Edinburgh. If you’re looking to learn more about Edinburgh’s history and explore lesser-known areas of the city, A wee pedal offer an award-winning service, with both regular bikes and E bikes available.

For those that prefer a less strenuous cycle, EZ Bike Tours have award-winning electric bikes. Sturdy and comfortable, the bikes can be ridden by anyone over 14 years old. Choose from a city tour which takes in both the Old and New Town, Carlton Hill and Arthur’s Seat, or a coastal tour which follows the coastline to South Queensferry.

Self-guided tours

Treasure Hunt Edinburgh phone-in-street

Using cryptic clues and downloadable treasure maps, Treasure Hunt Edinburgh is a fun way to explore the city. Curious about Edinburgh gives visitors the chance to discover both the well-known and lesser-known sights using two self-guided, quirky, heritage walks with an optional treasure hunt.

Prefer a deeper exploration into the city and its past? Then Curious Edinburgh could be for you. Developed by the University of Edinburgh, tours cover everything from WWII Edinburgh and the history of medicine to the Scottish Enlightenment and Women in STEM.

Ghost tours

Bobby's Bothy
Image Credit: City of Dead Tours

Did you know that Edinburgh is thought to be one of the most haunted places in Europe?

Discover haunted ghouls and sinister stories from Edinburgh’s dark past with one of Mercat Tours award-winning walking tours, visit two of the city’s most haunted locations – the South Bridge Vaults and the Covenanter’s Prison – with City of the Dead Tours or hear tales of ghosts and things that bump in the night with Auld Reekie Tours. If you’re feeling particularly brave, City of Edinburgh Tours invite you beneath the streets into the unnerving South Bridge vaults….

Bus tours

Edinburgh Bus Tour

Take the weight off and see the sights of Edinburgh from a different perspective with a bus tour.

Both Bright Bus Tours and Edinburgh Bus Tours offer a comfortable way to see the city. Purchase a hop-on hop-off ticket from their departure point on Waterloo Place, sit back, enjoy multi-language commentary and take-in the beauty of the city from an open-top bus.

For something a bit different, Edinburgh Ghost Bus Tour are sure to have you on the edge of your seat. Travel across the city while being regaled with tales of ghosts and ghouls.  

Churches and cathedrals

St Giles Cathedral
St Giles Cathedral

Several of the city’s places of worship have played both significant roles in both the religious and cultural history of Edinburgh.

Founded in 1620, Greyfriars Kirk has seen many historical moments – the National Covenant was signed here in 1638, and from 1650 to 1653 it became barracks as part of Cromwell’s invasion of Scotland. Equally important is its graveyard which accommodates a number of notable tombs. Learn more on a private bespoke tour. 

Dating from the 12th century, the stunning St Giles’ Cathedral is full of fascinating architecture and artefacts. Free guided walking tours take place daily. Highlights include the famous Thistle Chapel, home of Scotland’s great order of chivalry.

Literary Tours

Writers Museum
Writers Museum

Edinburgh has been the home and inspiration of many great writers over the centuries. Take a step in the shoes of your favourite writers and discover the city through their eyes.

The popular Edinburgh Literary Pub Tour is an informative and highly entertaining tour conducted by professional actors, taking guests on a comedy drama through the twists and turns of the courtyards and pubs in Edinburgh’s Old and New Town. While Edinburgh Book Lover’s Tour travels through time and infiltrates the city’s ancient wynds, closes and graveyards. From historical writers to today’s favourites, there’s something to suit all reading tastes.

Photo Tours

Holyrood Park: view from Arthur's Seat looking to Salisbury Crags and Edinburgh Castle, Angus Miller, Geowalks

Photography enthusiast? Edinburgh is a beautiful city which lends itself to stunning images of grand Georgian Streets, gorgeous gardens and quirky alleyways.

Both Edinburgh Photo Walks and Aperture Tours advise how to get the best out of your camera whilst touring the city in the experienced hands of a professional photographer. Find out how to compose the perfect photo and learn photography skills to take on all your travels to come.

Choose your next adventure

From festivals and fairs to exhibitions and events, there’s always lots going on in Edinburgh.