Insider's Guide to Edinburgh

Major attractions, tips and our top things to see and do.

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Tour code: 293401SECRETS
See the best of medieval yet modern Edinburgh this 2-hour walking tour with 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, and pass iconic locations like St Giles Cathedral, Parliament Square and John Knox House.


  • 2-hour guided walking tour of Edinburgh’s Royal Mile, Edinburgh Castle and Old Town, part of a UNESCO World Heritage site
  • Wander down centuries-old cobblestone streets, passageways and Edinburgh tenements
  • See St Giles Cathedral, High Street, Parliament Square, John Knox House, Lawnmarket and Castlehill
  • Visit Edinburgh Castle after the tour of Old Town and the Royal Mile

Why Our Insiders Chose This Tour

On this affordable tour, you’ll see not only Old Town's amazing historical architecture but also hear stories and secrets from Edinburgh’s past. Learn about the real-life person who inspired the fictional character of Dr Jekyll/Mr Hyde. Then, enjoy fast-track entry into Edinburgh Castle.

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

Edinburgh Historical Walking Tour Including Skip the Line Entry to Edinburgh Castle

Secrets of Edinburgh's Royal Mile Afternoon Walking Tour

Your 2-hour sightseeing tour of historic Edinburgh begins in early afternoon. Meet your guide at Mercat Cross on High Street and stroll along the cobbled streets of Old Town, peeking into cloistered courtyards and learning about how centuries of Dunediners (or Edinburgers!) have lived within the city’s narrow passageways, termed ‘closes’ and ‘wynds.’ As you walk, hear about Edinburgh’s extensive history, officially beginning with Roman settlement, though most renowned for its infamous royal residents and bloody wars of religious reformation and independence. 

Follow medieval streets and alleys, and check out the protected Reformation-era constructions such as St Giles Cathedral, often called the High Kirk of Edinburgh. Hear some of the site’s dramatic events like that of Protestant reformer Jenny Geddes, whose assault on a bishop indirectly led to the Wars on the Three Kingdoms. Stop in Parliament Square and at the famous John Knox House, a historic treasure that is one of the last original medieval buildings on the Royal Mile. Then continue on to Castlehill, where you’ll enjoy sweeping views of the bustling city below.

Next, head to Edinburgh Castle, strategically perched upon the craggy hilltop of Castle Rock, where you’ll have skip-the-line access to tour the building’s impressive interior. Learn about medieval life in the palace and the many bloody battles fought here such as the War of Independence in the 14th century. On a 45-minute guided tour, explore grand buildings like the Royal Palace and Margaret’s Chapel, see the ancient Stone of Destiny, and soak up the glimmer of the Honours of Scotland’s – the UK’s oldest crown jewels.

Your excursion ends here in the afternoon.

Customer Reviews


5 star rating: Highly Recommended May 2016

This was fun and informative. Our guide was great, as I've found most of the tour guides in Edinburgh to be. She was a great story teller and made the experience a great time. I highly recommend this tour for anyone wanting to get acquainted with Edinburgh.

Victoria T

5 star rating: Highly Recommended May 2016

Great little tour. Helps you understand the Royal Mile a little better. Edinburgh Castle is spectacular. Could have spent a whole day just exploring that. I have forgotten our tour guides name but she was sweet woman and was very informative and friendly.


5 star rating: Highly Recommended April 2016

Guide was great. Edinburgh is one of the greatest cities in the world.

Stephen C

5 star rating: Highly Recommended April 2016

Excellent guide. Very interesting content and tour

April H Ireland

5 star rating: Highly Recommended April 2016

Totally amazing and very interesting too. I recommend going on this tour.


5 star rating: Highly Recommended April 2016

amazing tour, so full of information, Our guide Margaret, was really what made it so enjoyable, very knowledgable and tied all the stories together throughout the tour, strongly rec'md it, in fact a few of our other families we met up with in Glasgow, took train to do the tour for the day. A must do for any first time travellers to Edinburgh or history lovers.

April H Ireland

5 star rating: Highly Recommended April 2016

It was brilliant. Very interesting, wonderfully informative, and the castle was fascinating.

Melanie O

5 star rating: Highly Recommended April 2016

Our Guide Charles was amazing! He told us so much about the history of Edinburgh and took us to some very nice courts and closes. Together we went into Edinburgh Castle and there he told us something about the castle and recommended in which order we could explore the remaining castle on our own.

Mary L

5 star rating: Highly Recommended April 2016

Tour was great--interesting. Fun for the entire family.

Elizabeth B

5 star rating: Highly Recommended April 2016

Loved the tour with Kim - excellent guide.

From USD $ 43.16

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