Check Availability

Edinburgh Vaults Tour

Select date and travellers
  • Select date
  • Select adult
  • Select child
  • Child age

Key Highlights

  • Explore the fascinating Blair Street Underground Vaults
  • Hear stories of lives lived and lost down in the sinister, cramped tunnels
  • See and touch artefacts from the 19th century
  • Tour is lead by an expert guide
  • Activity Schedule
    When does it run?

    01 Apr – 31 Oct: Daily
    01 Nov – 31 Mar: Saturday & Sunday at 2:00pm and Daily at 4:00pm

    Duration

    Approx. 1 hour 15 mins

    Start time

    2:00pm & 4:00pm

    Meeting Point

    Tour starts at Mercat Cross (an octagonal monument on the Royal Mile, opposite City Chambers).
    Please report at the meeting point 15 minutes before the start time. This is mandatory to allow time for pre-departure briefing.

    Ending Point

    Tour ends at Interpretation Room of the Vaults, Blair Street

  • Overview & Itinerary

    Overview

    On this tour you will be taken through Blair Street Underground Vaults: the deepest, largest and most extensive in Edinburgh.

    Many know of the vaults as a place of ghostly activities but this tour tells their true history.

    The vaults started their life as storage space for the taverns, cobblers and other tradesmen that were prospering during the industrial revolution. However when the businesses abandoned the space, the poorest citizens of Edinburgh populated the dark, damp spaces of the vaults. Slums, brothels and salubrious pubs became commonplace.

    Crimes including robbery and murder soon plagued the vaults. The infamous serial killer duo Burke and Hare, who sold corpses to medical schools, are rumoured to have hunted for victims in the vaults and even stored some of the bodies there.

    Itinerary

    You will meet your guide at Mercat Cross, an octagonal monument on the Royal Mile, opposite the City Chambers.

    On this tour lasting just over an hour, discover the fascinating history of the network of vaults that run under the streets of Edinburgh.

    From starting life as storage for prosperous business owner their decline into disrepute, this tour covers the true history of the Edinburgh vaults.

    You can see and touch artefacts from the 19th century and hear how people lived and worked down in the vaults.

    The tour includes a visit to Discovery Room and an intriguing presentation. Written translations available on request (Fr, Ger, It, Sp, Rus).

    Your tour ends in the vault’s interpretation room.

  • Inclusions & Exclusions

    Inclusions

    • Walking Tour of the Edinburgh Vaults
    • English guide
  • Please note & Additional info

    Please note

    Please call the activity operator at least 24 hours prior to the start of the tour to reconfirm the departure details.

    Additional info

    The confirmation voucher includes the local activity operator’s contact details and local telephone numbers at the destination. They will happily answer any logistical questions you may have.
  • Reviews
    • Excellent Tour and Guide

      Very informative, interesting and well worth doing while in Edinburgh. Loved this tour....

      Ms H Elizabeth
    • Informative unique experience

      Experienced tour guide gave enlightening history of the creation, usage and occupants of the Edinburgh Vaults in the context of the social changes in the 18th / 19th centuries. ...

      R H SMART
    • I'll be coming back in the near future for sure!

      The Edinburgh Vaults tour was one which definitely drew my attention from the minute I found it and I am happy to say that disappointed, I was not. There was no problem finding...

      Elizabeth kennedy
    • Read all