Despite the compactness of the city centre, open-top bus tours are big business, with several companies taking slightly varying routes around the main sights. All cost much the same, depart from Waverley Bridge and allow you to get on and off at leisure. There are also several walking tours, many of which depart from the central section of the Royal Mile near the High Kirk of St Giles; ghost tours and specialist tours are also available. Advance booking is recommended for all tours, and for the specialist tours in particular.

City of the Dead Graveyard Tour

Spine-tingling night-time tours around the Old Town.

Edinburgh Literary Pub Tour

Good specialist tour that mixes a pub crawl with extracts from local authors acted out along the way.


Guided walks up Arthur’s Seat in the company of a qualified geologist.


The most engaging bus tours, using a fleet of vintage buses.

Mercat Tours

Reliable operator for walking tours and Old Town ghost tours.


Trace the footsteps of Inspector Rebus, hero of Ian Rankin’s bestselling detective novels.


A tour that takes you to places made famous from Irvine Welsh’s novels.

Book through Rough Guides’ trusted travel partners

Scotland features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

The most beautiful region in Scotland: the results!

The most beautiful region in Scotland: the results!

In a country as stunning as Scotland, how do you choose the most beautiful region? VisitScotland asked us to help them find out, so we ran a poll with our rea…

20 Apr 2018 • Rough Guides Editors
How to ace Aberdeen: an expert’s guide to the Granite City

How to ace Aberdeen: an expert’s guide to the Granite City

With more than thirty other namesakes around the world – from New South Wales in Australia to South Africa's Eastern Cape – Scotland's Aberdeen remain…

18 Apr 2018 • Mike MacEacheran
9 quirky British islands to explore

9 quirky British islands to explore

Just a fraction of Britain’s more than 6000 islands are accessible – and even fewer are inhabited. If you’re dreaming of life, or just a holiday, on a rem…

04 Apr 2018 • Rachel Mills insert_drive_file Article
View more featureschevron_right