Walking Tours in Edinburgh

Discover Edinburgh by foot. It will give you a new perspective – seen with the eyes of a local, either on a private tour, small group tour or book a set tour. Find out about People past and present and enjoy discovering nooks and crannies wherever we go. Take a look at the suggestions below.

A City with Two Hearts: Old Town and New Town of Edinburgh

Explore the two very different hearts of Edinburgh in one walk. Compare the Old Town with its small wynds and closes with the wide streets of the perfectly planned New Town of the 18th century – connected through Princes Street Gardens.

Dean Village to Stockbridge: Two very different villages connected by a river walk

Be impressed by Dean Village, hidden deep in the valley of the Water of Leith with its obvious signs of mill heritage. Walk along the river and enjoy nature. Relax afterwards in vibrant Stockbridge with food and drink or shopping.

Cramond: Sea air and secrets where the river meets the sea

Only a bus ride from the city centre. Enjoy a calming walk through woodlands to the seaside and along the river. Meet Romans, bishops, mill workers and have fun by the sea. Hear about Cramond’s rich history and its popularity today.

The Westend: Walk in the footsteps of doctors, nurses and inventors

Admire the Western extension of the New Town with many green spaces and grand residences. Fancy a walk in a filming location? Walk in William Street and be transported to the early 19th century with many artist shops and eateries and pubs.

The Old Town: Wynds and Closes from the Castle to Holyrood

Discover more than the obvious places. Find some unexpected oasis of calm between Edinburgh Castle and the Palace of Holyrood. Hear about the stories thriving in the passages and courts of the Old Town – from Golfers Land to Filming Location.

The Grandeur of the New Town

Be amazed by the grandeur and wide roads of the New Town. The local’s shopping streets from High Street to Upmarket names, it also invites with its many bars and restaurants. Get the full picture when you hear about residents past and present.

Old Town and New Town of Edinburgh

A City with Two Hearts

Side by side lie the Medieval Old Town right next to the Georgian (C18) New Town, connected through green spaces or the train station. Enjoy the widely different atmosphere in these two hearts of the City Centre.

Allow yourself a full day to immerse yourself into history and daily life alike in our City. I include an hour’s time for lunch (not included in cost!) to leave you refreshed for the second half of the day.

It is a great way to explore and understand the city and packed with stories from then and now. We end in the Grassmarket as this is a great place to relax or shop. At the end of this tour you will receive a list of place to eat / drink / shop – see Old town tour and New Town tour and a few things to do.

Highlights

  • Explore the contrasting nature of the two parts of the Town
  • Journey through unexpected corners in the New Town and Old Town
  • Visit and capture shots of great panoramic views 
  • Take a break from the hustle and bustle to visit various green spaces
  • St Andrew’s and St George’s West Church (round church building)

  • Palace of the Holyrood and Holyrood parliament
Where do we meet?

By the statue of the Duke of Wellington on his horse, outside Registerhouse, opposite the Balmoral Hotel.

How do I get there?

Get a bus or the Tram to the east end of Princes Street, by Waverley Station

How long is the walk?

10.00 to 16.30 including one hour lunch (it can be difficult, getting spaces and served faster)

Where will we go?

The walk starts at Registerhouse and takes first a loop around the New Town and then via Calton Hill (for some fantastic panoramic views) along the Royal Mile to finish in the Grassmarket

Dean Village to Stockbridge

Two very different villages connected by a river walk

Only 5 minutes’ walk from the Westend – here, deep inside the valley of the water of Leith,  it is easy to forget that you are almost in the centre of Edinburgh. Experience Nature, industrial heritage and some surprises as we walk along the water of Leith from Dean Village to Stockbridge. 

Dean Village and Stockbridge, both have a long but very different history. The result are two very distinct parts of Edinburgh with a very different feel.

Stockbridge has quiet corners too but also has a bustling Main Street, lined with numerous cafes and restaurants and small food shops as well as an array of more unusual shops for the home and independent bookshops – a rarity nowadays…

This walk is for all those who are looking for a bit of a respite from the busy city centre without having to go far – and still have the opportunity at the end of it to enjoy all you’d expect in a vibrant part of the city – or carry on along the Water of Leith for more strolling along the river.

Highlights

    • This is a walk of contrasts that uncovers their historical differences 
    • Dean Village is well preserved and peacefully quiet with no through traffic – but equally no shops.
    • A peaceful walk along the river that so much determined the story of Dean Village
    • Look up to the Dean Bridge towering over our heads

    • St Bernard’s Well – the water was said to be healing
    Where do we meet?

    We meet in Queensferry Street at the bus stop “Drumsheugh Place

    How do I get there?

    Get a bus or the Tram to the West end of Princes Street, by the new Johnnie Walker Centre. Use Lothian Buses or Traveline Scotland Journey Planner.  

    How long is the walk?

    The walk takes 2.5  hours

    Where will we go?

    From the bus stop we walk to the Dean Bridge and down into the valley of the Water of Leith to Dean Village. After an explorative walk around the village – beautifully preserved and very quiet with few cars – you make some unexpected discoveries along the river valley to Stockbridge.

    Stockbridge itself is a vibrant “suburb” of the New Town and very popular for its shops and continental offerings in cafes, restaurants, pubs along with the quieter side streets.  We end the walk in Arboretum Ave, 15 minutes walk from George Street.

    Once we have arrived in Arboretum Avenue you may allow yourself to drift along the main street or find more nature and quiet spaces in the neighbouring Royal Botanic Gardens (free entry) or just keep walking along Water of Leith Walkway.

    At the end of the tour I supply you with some ideas of places to explore for yourself.

    Cramond

    Sea air and secrets where the river meets the sea

    This walk takes you away from the busy City centre to a place that has so much to offer – it is now one of the most desirable suburbs of Edinburgh. Delve into peace and quiet, history and nature.  Smell the sea air and stroll along the river.

    You love the seaside, a charming village with little traffic, but also enjoy a walk through woodland and along a river? Have yourself surprised by this little hidden gem with lots of photo opportunities. It offers it all.

    At the end of the walk, you can enjoy the rest of your time by the sea. There are various possibilities to walk further if you come by bus! I will supply you with some suggestions at the end of the walk.

    Highlights

    • Suitable for children (go free up to the age of 15) and dogs
    • This trip is a great mix of woodland walk, Village, seaside and river walk
    • Cramond is a charming conservation village with plenty of interesting history
    • Enjoy the views at the picturesque yacht harbour
    • Discover spectacular views across the Firth of Forth
    • Meet Romans, bishops, mill workers, holiday guests and suburbia

    • Cramond has a wealth of stories just waiting to be uncovered!
    Where do we meet?

    We meet in Cramond Road North at the bus stop “Cramond Place’ facing the direction back to town.

    How do I get there?

    Get the bus no 41 to Cramond and get off at Cramond Glebe Road stop (it does not matter if you miss the stop. Use the Lothian Buses or Traveline Scotland Journey Planner. Alternatively, you can park your car at the public car park in Cramond and walk back to the bus stop (7 minutes’ walk)

    How long is the walk?

    The walk takes 2.5 hours

    Where will we go?

    We leave the street straight away and take a walk along the heritage trail towards the water front. Along the way we take in a couple of historic buildings and the quaint village.

    From the promenade we carry on up the river Almond, past the yacht harbour and finish near the Fair-a-Far Mill where Caddell’s Row meets the School Brae. From here it is a 5 minutes’ walk to the bus stop back to town or you can accompany me back to Cramond foreshore.

    The Westend

    Walk in the footsteps of doctors, nurses and inventors

    We start in the highly acclaimed Charlotte Square and make our way through the leafy streets of the Westend down St Mary’s Episcopal Cathedral. The Westend was developed following the completion of Charlotte Square. The walk will give you the opportunity to discover film locations and stories of people past and present. Those walls have seen many greats… and still do!

    Although close to main arteries of the city, the streets are surprisingly quiet. Mostly residential grand houses give way to a shopping street with wonderful shops used for film and tv playing in the C18. 

    Highlights

    • Charlotte Square – the jewel in the crown of the new Town
    • Explore the hidden corners and treasures located throughout The Westend
    • Find out how the other half lived – and still lives to this day
    • Meet some interesting and charismatic people!
    • Set foot in the outside filming location for TV series and films set in the 18th century

    • Enjoy some independent shop windows and come back for refreshments in the inviting bars and pubs
    Where do we meet?

    Outside West Register House in Charlotte Square.

    How do I get there?

    Get a bus or the Tram to the West end of Princes Street, by the new Johnnie Walker Centre. Use Lothian Buses or Traveline Scotland Journey Planner.

    How long is the walk?

    2.5 hours

    Where will we go?

    We meet outside West Register House, situated in Charlotte Square. From there we will stroll through the well known and not so well known streets of the Westend ending at St Mary’s Episcopal Cathedral. Be inspired by some famous people from past and present.

    The green spaces are generous and you will even experience a shopping street made famous as a film location.

    The Old Town

    Wynds and Closes from the Castle to Holyrood

    Have yourself surprised by what lies beyond those brooding high buildings that line the Royal Mile. We will do little detours – meeting modern students and old poets. You will see how people lived then and now and enter some picturesque closes and hidden gardens.

    The tour ends in the Grassmarket where you will have plenty of opportunities to relax in one of the numerous hostelries or sit outside.

    Once you are refreshed, go on a journey of discovery in shops that range from second hand books and vintage clothing through tweed and tartan to specialty cheese and tea shops.

    I supply a list at the end of the walk!

    Highlights

    • Photo opportunities for the Palace of the Holyrood House and Holyrood Parliament (both external) 
    • Canongate Kirk (where the Royals worship when they stay in Edinburgh) and the Old Tolbooth of Canongate
    • Take a peaceful walk through its range of beautiful gardens

    • Hidden closes with buildings that span over 500 years – and the ruins of the  Abbey from the 12th century
      Where do we meet?

      We meet at the bus stop by the entrance to the Old Calton Cemetery, Waterloo Place

      How do I get there?

      Get any bus to Princes Street, East End (near new St James Centre).

      How long is the walk?

      2 hours

      Where will we go?

      From Waterloo Place we make our way down to the end of the Royal Mile and up the street to finish at the Grassmarket.

      The Grandeur of the New Town

      At first glimpse, the New Town of Edinburgh is all about the very square and original layout of this part of the Town in the second half of the 18th century. All I can say, is – appearances are deceptive; you will find that it is a lot more interesting than you might think!

      At the end of the tour you are in the best place to find a lovely hostelry or shop til you drop. George Street is all about the big fashion names – and fashionable bars, whilst Rose Street offers more artisan shops and traditional drinking holes.

      I supply a list at the end of the walk!

      Highlights

      • Visit the world-renowned National Portrait Gallery
      • St Andrews and St George’s West Church – the church without corners
      • Take a trip to Princes Street and the Floral Clock
      • Stop by The First House in the New Town
      • Discover all about Charlotte Square 
      • Some unexpected corners and insights
      • You will see the New Town with new eyes on this tour that is not just about the grand houses that line the street or the shops and bars of today
      • Fantastic views to the Firth of Forth and the Castle
      Where do we meet?

      By the statue of the Duke of Wellington on his horse, outside Registerhouse, opposite the Balmoral Hotel.

      How do I get there?

      Get a bus or the Tram to the east end of Princes Street, by Waverley Station

      How long is the walk?

      2 hours

      Where will we go?

      We meet at the statue of the Duke of Wellington. From there we will stroll through the well known and not so well known streets of the original New Town, ending in Charlotte Square – the jewel in the crown of the biggest New Town development in the world of its time.

      Get In Touch!

      Interested in taking a tour? Get in touch today using the contact form below and select which tour location(s) you’d like to do. I’ll be in touch as soon as possible!

      Walking Tours In Edinburgh

      Tour Options

      Find out more about other tour options I have available below!

      Walking Tours in Edinburgh

      The only way to really get to know Edinburgh and its people is a guided walk tour in a small group. Get in touch if you are interested in a private tour or check out the set tour suggestions.

      Walking Tours – Near Edinburgh

      You need not travel far to feel totally removed from the big city – Dunfermline and South Queensferry are only a bus ride away from the centre of town. Combine a walk tour in a small group with time to
      yourselves and make it a day trip. Find out more about the attraction of both to all ages by clicking below.

       

      Day Trips From Edinburgh

      There are some great day trips from Edinburgh in all directions. I have selected five suggestions for you to contemplate. They each contain more than can be done in a day – so select your favourite bits, add a distillery if you wish. I will adapt to your ideas and make it a great day out for all.

      Private Tours In Scotland

      Planning for a tour of Scotland? This is my favourite page. It shows you a snapshot of places I have guided in the past. Including a few things to do in Scotland. Be inspired !

      Covid-19

      With Covid still around us, I follow the guidelines for walking tours of the Scottish Tourist Guides Association. You find the link to the guidelines here 

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