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Royal Mile Tours

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58 Reviews
Royal Mile
The atmospheric Royal Mile thoroughfare cuts through the historic core of Scotland’s capital city, Edinburgh, extending for slightly more than a mile from Edinburgh Castle all the way to the Palace of Holyroodhouse. Both sides of the partly pedestrianized street are bordered by historic granite buildings bearing shop display windows piled high with symbols of Scotland, from tartan to whisky to shortbread. In between the former tenements and taverns are darkened arm-width-wide alleyways, known locally as closes.

The Basics
Because it penetrates the very heart of Edinburgh’s UNESCO World Heritage-listed Old Town and is home to so many of the city’s star attractions, including St Giles’ Cathedral, the Scotch Whisky Experience, and Camera Obscura, the Royal Mile is a staple on Edinburgh sightseeing tours. Classic walking tours, Harry Potter–themed tours, and tours of the underground Real Mary King’s Close all cover portions of the Royal Mile, as do hop-on hop-off and ghost bus tours. Visitors based in Glasgow can take day tours to the city to see Edinburgh’s biggest attractions, among them, of course, the Royal Mile.
 
Things to Know Before You Go
  • Wear sturdy walking shoes as some surfaces are uneven and sloping.
  • To avoid an uphill slog, start at Edinburgh Castle and walk downhill to Holyrood Palace, then use public transport or a taxi to get back up.
  • The cobblestoned sections of the street can cause difficulty for some wheelchairs, strollers, and mobility devices.

How to Get There
The Royal Mile comprises a succession of streets, namely Castlehill, Lawnmarket, High Street, Canongate, and Abbey Strand. It’s about a 5-minute walk from Princes Street tram station and even quicker from Edinburgh Waverley train station.

When to Get There
The Royal Mile is a much-frequented thoroughfare, and during the annual Edinburgh Festival in August, it is packed with visitors. If you can stomach the crowds, the atmosphere is truly something special with curbside entertainment courtesy of buskers and street performers.
 
Things to See on the Royal Mile
Many of Edinburgh’s most famous landmarks are situated on the Royal Mile. In addition to the palace and castle at either end, you’ll find other centuries-old landmarks such as St Giles' Cathedral, the Mercat Cross, and Canongate Kirk. It’s not all dusty old attractions, though—the Royal Mile is also the setting for the contemporary Scottish Parliament Building, a striking 2004-built concrete structure whose abstract shapes and forms take inspiration from such diverse references as Scottish landscapes and Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s paintings.
Address: Edinburgh, Scotland
Admission: Free
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89 Tours and Activities to Experience Royal Mile

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Royal Mile Guided Walking Tour in Edinburgh

Royal Mile Guided Walking Tour in Edinburgh

star-5
Explore famous landmarks and hidden secrets in Edinburgh on this walking tour. Explore Edinburgh’s famous Royal Mile with a guide, and gain insight into famous writers and inventors who have called the city home. Hear tales of Scotland's national bard—Robert Burns—and discover top landmarks such as St. Giles’ Cathedral and the National Galleries of Scotland. Capture Edinburgh through the eye of your camera as you go, and find out what makes this ancient city tick.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$33.10
From
$33.10
Taking safety measures

Loch Ness, Glencoe & The Highlands Day Trip from Edinburgh

Loch Ness, Glencoe & The Highlands Day Trip from Edinburgh

star-4.5
See the best of Scotland in one action-packed day on this Glencoe, Loch Ness and the Highlands tour from Edinburgh. Pass Stirling Castle on route to Kilmahog with a guide, then continue through Rannoch Moor to the soaring Highland peaks of Glen Coe. Head along the banks of Loch Linnhe to Fort William and gaze over Ben Nevis — Scotland’s highest mountain. Enjoy free time to explore Loch Ness and Urquhart Castle, and learn the famous legend of Nessie! Visit Inverness, then travel through the mighty Grampian Mountains to Edinburgh.
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  • 12 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$68.03
From
$68.03
Taking safety measures

The World Famous Underground Ghost Tour

The World Famous Underground Ghost Tour

star-4.5
Edinburgh is known for its dark past, and this evening walking tour is the original one to showcase the city's historically sinister and spooky side. Discover the hidden ‘wynds’ (alleys) and closes of the Old Town as you learn their mysteries and horrors; visit the ghost-ridden Greyfriars Kirkyard; and explore the city’s underground vaults to uncover their spirits and secrets. Your tour is led by a creepily costumed guide.
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  • 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$19.05
From
$19.05
Taking safety measures

Edinburgh Darkside Walking Tour: Mysteries, Murder and Legends

Edinburgh Darkside Walking Tour: Mysteries, Murder and Legends

star-5
Journey through Edinburgh’s grisliest tales on a haunted walking tour. Experience the ghastly histories of monsters, madness, and murder that cast a dark shadow on the capital city. Discover the stories and sites of witch trials, pagan rituals, and executions, and hear about local monsters that live in urban myth. Then visit the chilling Old Calton Burial Ground or Canongate Kirkyard cemetery to learn about body-snatching and some of the infamous interred.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$19.74
From
$19.74
Taking safety measures

Historical Walking Tour with Optional Skip the Line Entry to Edinburgh Castle

Historical Walking Tour with Optional Skip the Line Entry to Edinburgh Castle

star-4.5
See the best of medieval yet modern Edinburgh on this walking tour with optional skip-the-line access to Edinburgh Castle. As you walk, listen as your guide shares the history of this formidable city with ancient Roman roots and UNESCO-listed pockets. Explore atmospheric cobbled walkways along the Royal Mile, breeze into Edinburgh Castle to witness royal opulence (if option selected), and pass iconic locations like St. Giles Cathedral, Parliament Square, and John Knox House.
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  • 2 hours 15 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$22.07
Price varies by group size
From
$22.07
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

City Sightseeing Edinburgh Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour

City Sightseeing Edinburgh Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour

star-4
An Edinburgh bus tour is the perfect way to hear commentary on city sights and get a panoramic overview. This City Sightseeing tour of Edinburgh lets you hop on and off at several strategically placed stops as many times as you like. Board the open-top double-decker bus and travel the entire route, or stop at Edinburgh Castle, the National Museum and many more. Buses depart regularly and tickets are valid for 24 hours from first use.
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$21.77
From
$21.77
Taking safety measures

Ghost Bus Tour of Edinburgh

Ghost Bus Tour of Edinburgh

star-4.5
Delve into Edinburgh’s horrific history on this evening ghost bus tour. With your spooky local guide, visit the city’s most terrifying locations, haunted by infamy and restless spirits! From your seat in a double-decker vintage bus, gaze at eerie sites such as Greyfriars Kirk, Edinburgh Castle, Grassmarket, and the Royal Mile. Throughout the trip, hear anecdotes and facts about Edinburgh’s chilling past, replete with bloody executions, unspeakable tortures, and murder.
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$24.12
From
$24.12
Taking safety measures

Edinburgh Night Walking Including Underground Vaults

Edinburgh Night Walking Including Underground Vaults

star-4.5
Explore a sinister side of Edinburgh on this late-night ghost walking tour that includes the Blair Street Vaults under South Bridge. Stroll mysterious alleyways as you listen to your guide’s grim and ghastly tales of treason and torture. Then venture underground for a candlelight tour of the 18th-century chambers and hear haunting stories of supernatural forces lingering in the city's darkest corners.
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$22.07
Price varies by group size
From
$22.07
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

Underground Walking Tour in Edinburgh

Underground Walking Tour in Edinburgh

star-4
Step off the tourist trail and explore the Scottish capital’s hidden secrets on this underground walking tour in Edinburgh. Follow a guide from the South Bridge in Edinburgh Old Town down below street level, where a series of ancient vaults lie. As you explore the dark passageways, learn why the vaults were built, hear of the poor souls who sought refuge in the depths and discover a hidden witchcraft temple. Gain insight into city life during the 18th century, and learn of the deadly diseases which threatened Edinburgh’s inhabitants.
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$19.05
From
$19.05
Taking safety measures

Underground Vaults Historical Walking Tour in Edinburgh

Underground Vaults Historical Walking Tour in Edinburgh

star-4.5
Discover the Edinburgh Vaults—aka South Bridge Vaults—18th-century underground chambers that lie far below the city. On this underground walking tour with an entertaining and informative guide, hear tales of this dark and almost-forgotten place built below one of Edinburgh’s busiest thoroughfares. See evidence of excavated storage spaces, human habitation, taverns with wine vaults and more!
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  • 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$22.07
Price varies by group size
From
$22.07
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

Edinburgh Royal History Walking Tour with Optional Palace of Holyrood House Admission

Edinburgh Royal History Walking Tour with Optional Palace of Holyrood House Admission

star-5
Follow in the footsteps of Scottish icons like Mary, Queen of Scots and Bonnie Prince Charlie as you unravel the truths and myths of Edinburgh’s royal history. Set out on a 90-minute walking tour of the UNESCO-listed Old Town, spot the royal sites along Canongate and admire the grand Palace of Holyroodhouse, The Queen’s official residence in Scotland. After a comprehensive introduction to Edinburgh’s royal roots, enjoy skip-the-line access (optional) to the Palace of Holyrood and explore the magnificent royal residence independently.
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$22.07
From
$22.07
Taking safety measures

Edinburgh Private Walking Tour

Edinburgh Private Walking Tour

star-5
Learn about Edinburgh past and present on a private walking tour with an insider guide, who shares information about the city’s royal history and colorful characters, some of whom have inspired books and well-known stories. Get tips on where to eat and drink around the city, and see sights on and off the Royal Mile and near Greyfriars Kirk. You’ll enjoy one-on-one attention from a private guide on this tour that caters to couples, families and small groups looking for a more personal experience.
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  • 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$44.14
From
$44.14
Taking safety measures

The Royal Military Tattoo Edinburgh City Tour Rosslyn Chapel and Dinner

The Royal Military Tattoo Edinburgh City Tour Rosslyn Chapel and Dinner

star-5
Edinburgh is at its busiest during the Royal Military Tattoo but you can get away from the crowds on this private guided tour. Traveling in minibus in the company of just your party and a guide, explore the city streets from the medieval Old Town to the Georgian New Town before heading out of town to Rosslyn Chapel. Enjoy a 4-course dinner back in the city before taking your reserved seats for the spectacle that is the Military Tattoo, an unforgettable evening of music, ceremony, and dance.
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  • 12 hours
From
$515.66
From
$515.66

Discover Old Town-Royal Mile, Ancient Histories & Harry Potter!

Discover Old Town-Royal Mile, Ancient Histories & Harry Potter!

star-5
Old Town is a MUST DO tour as this was the original Edinburgh during the ancient times. We will pass through from the very beginning to the very end of the Royal Mile (UNESCO), discovering both the well-known historic places and the unknown & hidden spots, including Harry Potter's birth place(!). You will learn how Old Edinburgh was, how real life was and how people lived during the medieval times and many more facts & histories about Auld Reekie (Old Smokey the ancient name of Edinburgh). Hi, I'm Rishi your host and your guide and I conduct walking tours. I have over 20 years of experience in tourism & hospitality, I got my degree in Tourism (BA Hons) in Edinburgh to match my love of travel. I am from India and I live in the alluring city of Edinburgh. When I first came here many years back I fell in love with this city. Being myself an explorer, history & a nature lover, I found endless opportunities here. The experience I provide will become the memories of a life time for you.
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  • 2 to 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$24.49
From
$24.49
Taking safety measures

Edinburgh Old Town Evening Tour, Including Blair Street Underground and Dram of Whisky at Megget's Cellar

Edinburgh Old Town Evening Tour, Including Blair Street Underground and Dram of Whisky at Megget's Cellar

star-4.5
Edinburgh is notoriously one of the most haunted places in the UK, making it a prime destination for ghost-hunters. Dare to discover the city’s dark side on this evening tour and visit the eerie Blair Street Underground Vaults, follow in the footsteps of the infamous Edinburgh Mob, then settle your nerves with a dram of Scotch whisky in Megget's Cellar.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$26.48
From
$26.48
Taking safety measures

Edinburgh Royal Mile Walking Tour

Edinburgh Royal Mile Walking Tour

star-5
Embrace the best that Edinburgh has to offer on a 3-hour small-group walking tour of the Royal Mile. You’ll cover everything along the famous route, starting in the Lawnmarket and following it down to Holyroodhouse and Scottish Parliament. Listen as your guide tells you the little-known stories of the city’s most important people and events, before returning to a central location.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$40.82
From
$40.82
Taking safety measures

A Half Day In Edinburgh With A Local: Private & Personalized

A Half Day In Edinburgh With A Local: Private & Personalized

star-4.5
Visiting an unfamiliar city without knowing anyone there usually means relying on travel guides. Get a more personal experience in Edinburgh by spending time with a local Edinburgher who customizes your private, bespoke tour to your own interests. Go off the beaten path and discover locals' favorite spots.
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  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$110.33
Price varies by group size
From
$110.33
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

Guided Edinburgh Private Walking Tour

Guided Edinburgh Private Walking Tour

star-5
Embark on an enriching 3.5 or 7-hour walking tour of Edinburgh’s cultural and historical highlights with a private guide. While you listen to insightful commentary, you’ll visit iconic landmarks and hidden gems according to an itinerary tailored to your interests. Explore the cobbled streets of the Old Town, gaze at Edinburgh Castle on its rocky perch and ascend to the summit of Calton Hill for panoramic city views. On this private tour, you’ll receive the undivided attention of your guide while gaining unique insight into the Scottish capital.
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  • 3 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$360.37
per group
From
$360.37
per group
Taking safety measures

Blair Street Underground Vaults Evening Walking Tour in Edinburgh

Blair Street Underground Vaults Evening Walking Tour in Edinburgh

star-5
Edinburgh’s dark and desultory past means its streets are haunted by restless souls and wandering specters. This ghost tour—perfect for those fascinated by the supernatural—takes you to two of Edinburgh’s most haunted locations. Under the cloak of darkness, descend to the Blair Street vaults to explore a shadow-shrouded underground world. Visit Canongate Kirkyard, the final resting place of famous characters, and listen to gruesome tales of torture, cannibalism, and murder.
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  • 1 hour 45 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$26.48
Price varies by group size
From
$26.48
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

Private Half Day Edinburgh City Tour in a VIP Minibus

Private Half Day Edinburgh City Tour in a VIP Minibus

star-5
Explore Edinburgh in the comfort of an air-conditioned VIP Class Mercedes minibus on this private tour. Admire Edinburgh Castle, perched atop an extinct volcano, and hear tales of attempts to capture it. See the Old Town and hear from your guide about what life was like there in medieval times before contrasting it with the elegant Georgian buildings of the New Town. Includes hotel or port pickup and drop-off.
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  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$408.17
per group
From
$408.17
per group
Taking safety measures

The Old Edinburgh Walking Tour - Private tour.

The Old Edinburgh Walking Tour - Private tour.

star-5
Ideal for first-time visitors, this tour of Edinburgh's Old Town lets you follow in the footsteps of important Scottish figures such as Mary Queen of Scots, Robert Burns, and Bonnie Prince Charlie. In a small, private group, you’ll visit three of the Old Town’s former execution spots, admire the cobbled streets of the UNESCO-listed Old Town, and see the site of the notorious Tolbooth Prison. Throughout the tour, your guide provides archive imagery of historical Edinburgh to enhance your experience.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$27.21
Price varies by group size
From
$27.21
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

Discover Royal Mile-Old Town & ENJOY Indian Dinner ~ Walking Tour!

Discover Royal Mile-Old Town & ENJOY Indian Dinner ~ Walking Tour!

star-5
Come and discover one of the oldest city in the world and enjoy the multicultural flavors right in the heart of this ancient city! Indian cuisine is in the very heart of Scottish & British culture from over 300 years since the British colonial past in India, commonly known as the British Raj. You will learn how old Edinburgh was, how people lived, what was real life during the medieval times and many many more things, facts & histories about Auld Reekie (Old Smokey the old name of Edinburgh) Hi, I'm Rishi your host and your guide and I conduct walking tours. I have over 20 years of experience in hospitality & tourism, I got my degree in Tourism (BA Hons) in Edinburgh to match my love of travel. I'm from India and I live in the alluring city of Edinburgh. When I first came here many years back I fell in love with this city. Being myself an explorer, history & a nature lover, I found endless opportunities here. The experience I provide will become the memories of a life time for you.
More
  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$77.55
From
$77.55
Taking safety measures

Canongate Brunch tour (Lower half of the Royal Mile)

Canongate Brunch tour (Lower half of the Royal Mile)

star-4
Enjoy brunch with a slice of history on this Edinburgh food tour with a difference. Together with your guide, visit six locations on the Canongate (the lower half of the Royal Mile), including a local pub, delicatessen, and traditional pub. Along the way, as you indulge in a Bloody Mary, breakfast canapés, small tastings of local cheeses, oatcakes, beer, whisky, fudge, and more, you'll get insight from your guide and shop proprietors into the history of the area.
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  • 3 hours to 3 hours 30 minutes
  • Taking safety measures
From
$107.48
From
$107.48
Taking safety measures

Edinburgh Royal Mile (New Self Guided Tour)

Edinburgh Royal Mile (New Self Guided Tour)

Why be a tourist when you can be a traveller. We'll show you the castle and the Cathedral, but it's the cities secret hidden gems that most people want to learn about. * The cannon ball hidden in the walls of a house. * The Witches well. * Dr Jekyll and Mr. Hyde * The Heart of Midlothian * And many, many more stories. This is your tour at your own pace and at your convenience. We have done all the homework for you and found and researched all the stories and facts you need for an enlightening self guided tour of Edinburgh's history, architecture, music, ghosts, murders and culture. Once logged in you are the boss, you decide what you want to see and when you want to see it and you have 48 hours to do so.
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  • 2 to 5 hours
  • Taking safety measures
From
$8.15
From
$8.15
Taking safety measures

Frequently Asked Questions

The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
What's the best way to experience Royal Mile?