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See the sights you want to see in Edinburgh with this independent day trip from London. Travel to the Scottish capital by train, and then make use of an included Edinburgh hop-on hop-off bus tour to set your own sightseeing schedule. Visit Edinburgh Old Town; wander along the UNESCO World Heritage–listed Royal Mile; and choose to visit the Scotch Whisky Heritage Center, St Giles Cathedral, the National Museum of Scotland and a whole host of other top attractions. An entrance ticket for Edinburgh Castle is also included.


  • Full day trip from London to Edinburgh by train
  • Travel by train through England’s green countryside
  • Enjoy a hop-on hop-off open-top sightseeing tour of Edinburgh
  • Explore Edinburgh’s beautiful Old Town and the Royal Mile, a UNESCO World Heritage site
  • See the Scottish Crown Jewels inside Edinburgh Castle
  • Visit the Scotch Whisky Heritage Center and the Scott Monument with the hop-on hop-off bus service
  • Enjoy complete freedom on this independent tour to explore Edinburgh at your own pace

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

Edinburgh Rail Day Trip from London

Take a walk down the Royal Mile, a UNESCO World Heritage site

Depart from central London in the early morning and travel by train to Edinburgh, roughly 4.5 hours away. Travel through the pretty English countryside, passing the canals and waterways of the Midlands and old mill towns built in the Industrial Revolution. Should you wish, enhance your experience by booking first-class train tickets for wider seats, complimentary Wi-Fi and snacks, and quieter coaches.

Begin your exploration of the Scottish capital with a hop-on hop-off bus tour. With your included ticket, board the double-decker bus at the station and take in the sights from the open-air upper deck, hopping on and off at the sights that interest you the most.

Choose to jump off in Edinburgh Old Town, where you can walk along the UNESCO-listed Royal Mile and visit St Giles’ Cathedral, the National Museum of Scotland and other nearby landmarks and attractions. Perhaps uncover the country’s royal history at Edinburgh Castle (ticket included), or visit the Scotch Whisky Heritage Center to learn about the nation’s favourite tipple. Alternatively, hop back on the bus to Palace of Holyroodhouse, where the Queen holds official state ceremonies when she is in Scotland.

You’ll enjoy complete freedom to explore Edinburgh at your own pace on this unescorted tour. When the time comes, return to London by train.

Customer Reviews

Agatha T

5 star rating: Highly Recommended September 2016

This was a great tour mostly because we were left on our own. The tour rep met us at Kings Cross station, explained our tickets, gave us a map and a guide and told us which train to be in for the return trip and off we went. Edinburgh Was easy to navigate and there was plenty to see and do at our own pace. It was the perfect amount of time to spend there. I highly recommend this trip.


5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2016

More info or a guided tour in Edinburgh would have been more enjoyable.
Overall it was a very good tour and experience. The train ride with Virgin was great too.

Tanya B

5 star rating: Highly Recommended July 2016

We met the travel agent exactly on time and where we were told she would be. She was very helpful in telling us how and when to do things to optimize our time in Edinburgh as it was an unguided tour. The trip was awesome! Our family of 6 is Scottish so we thoroughly enjoyed the history of the city. Take a few minutes to go to the Edinburgh museum in the old city, its free and very informative. The inclusion of skip the line tickets was a lifesaver as the weather was very nice and the castle was very busy.


5 star rating: Highly Recommended July 2016

The tour was through Evan Evans. The contact person at the train station was very helpful, explaining in detail the itinerary and walking us to the train. Traveled coach with assigned seats so I don and #39;t think traveling first class is necessary. Used Hop on/Hop off to get to Edinburgh Castle.

Rebecca R

5 star rating: Highly Recommended June 2016

This tour was amazing!

Catherine R

5 star rating: Highly Recommended May 2016

This was an awesome day. Very long but well worth it. The train travel was long but being prepared with reading material made the time pass quickly.


5 star rating: Highly Recommended May 2016

Good tour but you can probably arrange this one on your own. Train ride through the countryside is beautiful and Edinburgh Castle is beautiful and very historic. Since there is no tour guide, I would recommend staying overnight so that you have enough time to see more of the sights. The train trip takes 4 1/2 hrs each way so there isn't a great deal of time to see the sights if you're trying to do it in one day like we did.

Regina H

5 star rating: Highly Recommended April 2016

Wonderful trip. Sit back and relax on your train trip. Once you reach your destination- everything was great!!!

Anne E B

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2015

The train trip was easy and went by quickly. Edinburgh is easy to manage and the tour operators make it simple to get on board the train, buses and in the castle. It was not a guided tour, but it's not a problem because the Edinburgh Waverly Station is central to the things you want to see. Overall, I would highly recommend taking a day and going to Scotland!


5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2015

Wonderful land to see as you travel. Great experience. Tour guide was good for being new at it. Not sure Sundays are the best day to take this tour, Some of the places were closed.

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