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Unique things to do in Lothian

Book unforgettable activities hosted by locals on Airbnb.

Top-rated activities

The Dark Side of Edinburgh
If you want a mundane, humdrum history walk, this is not the tour for you. But... if you want to learn what the tourist industry leaves out? The hidden, gruesome crimes and punishments? The long forgotten twisted, sadistic characters? The thousands of lives painfully lost in the cruel grip of Edinburgh's past? Maybe you are brave enough to learn the truth. Hear of witches, cannibals, murders, thieves, body snatchers, blood thirsty mobs and the devil in disguise. We will explore haunted graveyards, hide up darkened closes, spit on the Heart of Midlothian and bravely face where Edinburgh believed the world ended. You even get a chance to knock on Bloody Mackenzie's door, if you dare! Madam McKinnon will guide you through our streets under cover of darkness. She's been dead for almost 200 years and does not take kindly to modern nonsense. She will however, crack your sides with laughter over her dry Scottish wit. And her tales will chill you to your core. Our tours are historically accurate, with a history this dark there's no need to fabricate! COVID INFO: During these difficult times, your safety is very important to us. As restrictions in Scotland have eased and the tour is entirely outside, masks are no longer a requirement but welcomed. Please continue to maintain appropriate distancing from our guide and other groups on tour. We thank you for your cooperation.
Whisky and Folklore
We meet on the iconic Royal Mile by the eminent Scottish thinker and drinker Adam Smith. It is then a short walk to one excellent whisky bar that we use. We have the entire upstairs area reserved for us, ensuring lots of space for the group. During the course of two hours we will sample four outstanding Single Malt Scotch Whiskies from the four major whisky producing regions of Scotland. We will discus some of the history of Scotland and explore the reasons as to why whisky is now so ingrained as a staple of Scottish culture and we have some great tales from Scotland and the world of whisky to share with you. Other things to note This tour departs promptly and we can not wait for guests who are late. You must meet us at our start point at least 15min before the tour departs to secure your space. People under the age of 18 are not permitted on this tour. This is due to licencing at the venue we use.
Underground Beer Tasting
We'll start off with our 1st beer and a tour of our building, a 16th Century prison and courthouse. We have some original features untouched for hundreds of years. We'll make our way down to the hidden vaults under our building, where you'll try a selection of 4 other local beers in the most hidden tasting room in Edinburgh! Along with learning about the beers from an expert guide and the history of brewing in Edinburgh, participants will get to see the secret rooms hidden in the old prison, as well as stories of prisoners who were held here, the dark and grimy history of Auld Reekie, and how beer shaped the way we live our lives today. Other things to note Please be aware that the vault is accessed via about 20 steps- there is no lift/ramp access to the lower level. Check-in with reception staff at The Hostel above
Small group Harry Potter walking tour
We'll discover the streets and secret alleyways of the Old Town area of Edinburgh, starting at Edinburgh Castle, then we'll wander down to "Diagon Alley" and find the gravestones of "Voldemort" and some other well known names in the Harry Potter series. We'll also spot "Hogwarts School" of Wizardry and find where the writer found her inspiration from. Learn about the famous and not so famous cafes where J.K. Rowling began her writing career and finished in the realms of luxury. The tour will last approximately 1 hour. However, please allow for an additional 20 minutes if tour runs over depending on group size, photo opportunities and question time. Other things to note The tour will be outdoors, whether rain or shine so come prepared to walk around for over an hour. If it is raining, I suggest to wear sturdy shoes - the graveyard can be muddy. We won't wait if you are late, please arrive 5 mins early. Call me on +44(0)7884558365 *No refunds if late or no show.
Edinburgh Old Town Live Music Pub Tour With Local Musician
A 3 hour live music tour around Edinburgh old town's genuine Scottish bars where people appreciate talented musicians. This is the opportunity for guests to plug into the city’s flourishing acoustic live music pub scene. Genres ranging from traditional and contemporary celtic folk, pop, indie, stripped back acoustic jazz/blues and original singer song writing. Part of the tour will consist of live music sessions where guests can just sit back and listen or borrow the house guitar and play a song or two. (no pressure) Your guide is a local professional musician with 20 years experience of performing around the city venues. During the tour you will also have the opportunity to listen to him sing and perform songs . Each of the 3/4 bars visited during the tour are established live music bars in the old town area of Edinburgh. Each venue hosts quality live music which are also famous for their warm atmosphere and traditional welcome. For over 18s only due to Scottish licensing laws. Guests are asked to follow local government covid guidelines . Bring face mask or covering, hand sanitizer and cancel and stay home if they have symptoms. Although we visit bars during the tour please don't feel pressured into drinking alcohol. Fun time with or without.

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All activities near Lothian

Harry Potter, Haggis & City Sunsets
Do you want an all round, INTERACTIVE Edinburgh city tour which is full of local history, nature and cuisine? Then this tour is for you! We will meet at the National Library of Scotland where we will make our way down the street which inspired the creation of Diagon Alley. This street will lead us directly to the heart of the old town where we will see the grave of Greyfriars Bobby, the same graveyard which inspired J K Rowling's three leading characters in the ever-popular Harry Potter series. While learning more about Rowling's life and work, we will make the 20-30 minute, steep climb up the extinct volcano, and, weather permitting, we can sit and absorb the amazing sunset over the city. Slowly descending Arthurs seat, we will head to the Royal Mile where we will find the Holyrood Palace grounds, the 'birthplace' of Scrooge and our last stop, the place where we share with you the peculiar local delicacies deep fried mars bar and haggis (recommended but not included). Along the way there will also be fun facts, the chance to ask questions and even some Edinburgh Trivia. So, if the Ministry of Magical Tours is for you then please feel free to drop us a message. Just remember we can always customise the trip to suit you! *note do let us know if you have a toddler so we can ensure the route is suitable* It would be a pleasure to see you soon, Rob - Instagram @robcarrtours
Comedy Late Show in a Historic Venue
The beer is cold, the Whisky is perfectly aged and the laughs are big, with comedy performers from all over the world of Stand-Up and TV. You'll enjoy some of the best stand up comedy available in the city of Edinburgh. It's a 90 minute show with lots of laughs and plenty of curated comedy for an international audience. Our lineups are very diverse and we make sure everyone is comfortable during the show. Other things to note Meet at 10:30pm for 11:00pm Show. 18+ . ID may be required. Even if this event is showing as sold out it's worth calling 0131 466 3266 to check availability and cancellations.
Harry Potter, Haggis & Horrible Histories
Do you want an all-round, INTERACTIVE city tour full of local history, castle viewpoints and Scottish cuisine? Then this tour is for you! After three years of my 5-star tour, Harry Potter, Haggis & City Sunsets, I have launched this new experience to bring together my biggest passions in dark history, Harry Potter, and Scottish cuisine, all the while making you laugh. Meeting at the National Library of Scotland we will start the experience by discussing how J K Rowling began her journey in creating Harry Potter and how she was inspired to create Diagon Alley. We will then find ourselves in the heart of the old town, where we will explore the gruesome history of public executions, find one of the most incredible viewpoints of Edinburgh Castle and navigate around arguably the most haunted graveyard in the UK, Greyfriars Kirkyard. Throughout the experience you will also learn more about J K Rowling’s life, exploring two cafes where she spent her time writing the books. Hear the tale of Greyfriars Bobby, in the same graveyard which inspired J K Rowling’s three leading characters in the ever-popular Harry Potter series. Amongst all the fun, don’t forget deep fried mars bar and haggis ;) (recommended but not included)! It would be a pleasure to host you soon, happy travelling :) Insta - @robcarrtours
The Dark Side of Edinburgh
If you want a mundane, humdrum history walk, this is not the tour for you. But... if you want to learn what the tourist industry leaves out? The hidden, gruesome crimes and punishments? The long forgotten twisted, sadistic characters? The thousands of lives painfully lost in the cruel grip of Edinburgh's past? Maybe you are brave enough to learn the truth. Hear of witches, cannibals, murders, thieves, body snatchers, blood thirsty mobs and the devil in disguise. We will explore haunted graveyards, hide up darkened closes, spit on the Heart of Midlothian and bravely face where Edinburgh believed the world ended. You even get a chance to knock on Bloody Mackenzie's door, if you dare! Madam McKinnon will guide you through our streets under cover of darkness. She's been dead for almost 200 years and does not take kindly to modern nonsense. She will however, crack your sides with laughter over her dry Scottish wit. And her tales will chill you to your core. Our tours are historically accurate, with a history this dark there's no need to fabricate! COVID INFO: During these difficult times, your safety is very important to us. As restrictions in Scotland have eased and the tour is entirely outside, masks are no longer a requirement but welcomed. Please continue to maintain appropriate distancing from our guide and other groups on tour. We thank you for your cooperation.
Edinburgh's Original Harry Potter Tour
After learning a spell or two, we start our tour in Edinburgh's historic Greyfriars Kirkyard where JK Rowling found several names for characters in the books. You'll learn who the world's worst poet was and which Hogwarts character is named after him as well as visiting the grave of Lord Voldemort himself. From here we'll also talk about two buildings that helped to inspire Hogwarts and of course give one lucky member of the group the chance to be sorted! From Greyfriars we'll take you out into the streets, past the suspiciously named Potterrow and on to three locations where JK Rowling wrote. We'll track her escalation of wealth from relying on free coffees from her brother-in-law in the Nicolson Cafe to trashing the most expensive hotel in the city, via the famous Elephant House. We conclude our tour on the real life Diagon Alley, better known by muggles as Victoria Street. This tour is highly interactive with a house point competition along the way and plenty of opportunities to ask our expert guides whatever you like. We are the original, biggest and highest-rated Harry Potter tour in Edinburgh. Currently ranked number 1 out of all Edinburgh Tours on TripAdvisor, featured in The Times, PBS and BBC Scotland, with nearly a decade's experience behind us - you will not be disappointed!
Whisky and Folklore
We meet on the iconic Royal Mile by the eminent Scottish thinker and drinker Adam Smith. It is then a short walk to one excellent whisky bar that we use. We have the entire upstairs area reserved for us, ensuring lots of space for the group. During the course of two hours we will sample four outstanding Single Malt Scotch Whiskies from the four major whisky producing regions of Scotland. We will discus some of the history of Scotland and explore the reasons as to why whisky is now so ingrained as a staple of Scottish culture and we have some great tales from Scotland and the world of whisky to share with you. Other things to note This tour departs promptly and we can not wait for guests who are late. You must meet us at our start point at least 15min before the tour departs to secure your space. People under the age of 18 are not permitted on this tour. This is due to licencing at the venue we use.
Underground Beer Tasting
We'll start off with our 1st beer and a tour of our building, a 16th Century prison and courthouse. We have some original features untouched for hundreds of years. We'll make our way down to the hidden vaults under our building, where you'll try a selection of 4 other local beers in the most hidden tasting room in Edinburgh! Along with learning about the beers from an expert guide and the history of brewing in Edinburgh, participants will get to see the secret rooms hidden in the old prison, as well as stories of prisoners who were held here, the dark and grimy history of Auld Reekie, and how beer shaped the way we live our lives today. Other things to note Please be aware that the vault is accessed via about 20 steps- there is no lift/ramp access to the lower level. Check-in with reception staff at The Hostel above
Small group Harry Potter walking tour
We'll discover the streets and secret alleyways of the Old Town area of Edinburgh, starting at Edinburgh Castle, then we'll wander down to "Diagon Alley" and find the gravestones of "Voldemort" and some other well known names in the Harry Potter series. We'll also spot "Hogwarts School" of Wizardry and find where the writer found her inspiration from. Learn about the famous and not so famous cafes where J.K. Rowling began her writing career and finished in the realms of luxury. The tour will last approximately 1 hour. However, please allow for an additional 20 minutes if tour runs over depending on group size, photo opportunities and question time. Other things to note The tour will be outdoors, whether rain or shine so come prepared to walk around for over an hour. If it is raining, I suggest to wear sturdy shoes - the graveyard can be muddy. We won't wait if you are late, please arrive 5 mins early. Call me on +44(0)7884558365 *No refunds if late or no show.
Edinburgh Old Town Live Music Pub Tour With Local Musician
A 3 hour live music tour around Edinburgh old town's genuine Scottish bars where people appreciate talented musicians. This is the opportunity for guests to plug into the city’s flourishing acoustic live music pub scene. Genres ranging from traditional and contemporary celtic folk, pop, indie, stripped back acoustic jazz/blues and original singer song writing. Part of the tour will consist of live music sessions where guests can just sit back and listen or borrow the house guitar and play a song or two. (no pressure) Your guide is a local professional musician with 20 years experience of performing around the city venues. During the tour you will also have the opportunity to listen to him sing and perform songs . Each of the 3/4 bars visited during the tour are established live music bars in the old town area of Edinburgh. Each venue hosts quality live music which are also famous for their warm atmosphere and traditional welcome. For over 18s only due to Scottish licensing laws. Guests are asked to follow local government covid guidelines . Bring face mask or covering, hand sanitizer and cancel and stay home if they have symptoms. Although we visit bars during the tour please don't feel pressured into drinking alcohol. Fun time with or without.
Edinburgh's Harry Potter Small Group Walking Tour Kids F ree
This small group walking tour is perfect for people who want a more personalised in depth Potter themed tour of the city. Instead of following a group of 30+ people you get to know your guide who can tailor the tour to you without having to spend 100's on a private tour. This walking tour of Edinburgh unfurls the history and origins of the world's most famous Wizard. You will see several beautiful Potter sights in this wonderful city and several locations that inspired JK Rowling to create the wizarding universe that we know and adore today. After we gather at Tron Kirk on The Royal Mile, the first stop of the tour is a view of the historical Waverley Train station. Trains being an iconic part of a young wizards journey. We then head to Edinburgh University Old College, and pop into the Old Town area to see a spooky graveyard & visit a shop down Victoria street which inspired Diagon Alley. We will also have great views of the famous Edinburgh Castle alongside many sights and buildings that inspired JK Rowling when she was writing each of the books including the famous cafe, The BIRTH PLACE of Harry Potter. This is a great tour for families & die hard fans of Harry Potter **Please note : there will not be more than 10 adults per group*** Other things to note ***THIS TOUR IS IN ENGLISH. IF YOU DO NOT UNDERSTAND ENGLISH : PLEASE DO NOT BOOK 2 hour walking tour
Skip the line tour of Edinburgh Castle
This tour includes a little of The Royal Mile and a lot of The Castle. Set aside time after your tour to explore. The price advertised does not include the entrance price to the castle, this is because some people book their own tickets in advance. You can purchase castle tickets directly from us at the start of the tour for your convenience. We meet on the Royal Mile and start by giving a little background history to Edinburgh and the Castle to help put everything into context. Moving up to the castle esplanade where you will learn about the Edinburgh Military Tattoo and two of the most famous figures from Scottish history; Robert the Bruce and William Wallace. Entering the Castle we stop by the Argyle Battery where you will learn about the 1 o'clock gun. Moving on we head down to the Hospital Square where we get impressive views from the Western Panorama before heading up towards the castle barracks and prisoner of war camp, all these areas have enthralling stories that only a guide can bring to life. We then climb to the top of Castle Rock entering the medieval section of Edinburgh Castle. Here we see the oldest building in Edinburgh, St Margaret’s Chapel and Mons Meg, a monstrous canon! The tour finishes in the Crown Square which is the heart of Edinburgh Castle and I will tell you all about the daring attacks against this iconic fortification.
Atmospheric couple & solo Photoshoot in Edinburgh
*** Valentain's Mounth Discount for all Couples*** **You can also check my Insta handle for more photos and ideas** @vasakos_3vh *Different timeslots are available upon request, contact me and we can arrange anything Let's create together the mementos of a lifetime experience and have fun along the way! We will meet in front of Tolbooth Kirk in Old Town and walk through time in some of the most captivating Edinburgh Old Town's closes and streets. I will also guide you through some other hidden gems of Edinburgh, which will make your experience and portraits unique and unforgettable. There are also alternative routes, which can be arranged upon request, such as the Calton Hill or Dean Village. I will use professional equipment during the photoshoot and advise you on the most flattering poses possible. My artistic touch and editing skills reassure that the outcome is unable to be replicated somewhere else. This experience is perfect for solo, couples or families who need a professional photoshoot, that you can only find in Edinburgh! A personalised session will be created according to your time preferences and my artistic suggestions. The photos will be picked and edited by myself and delivered to you in premium quality with in 10 days via link.
Undiscovered Edinburgh On Foot
Seen the Old Town (with us, our another lovely set of guides!) but want more? This tour is perfect for anyone wanting to get away from the big crowds of the Royal Mile. Over the 2 hours, you'll see some of the oldest buildings in Edinburgh, the city's centre's only waterfall, Edinburgh's only river and maybe the local otters and other birdlife. You'll meet Gains or Chris or Kat outside Castle Coffee Police Box, and from there it's a short walk down to Dean Village. In Dean Village, you'll explore the historic architecture, small streets and hidden alleyways that help give Dean Village it's charm. Before walking down the Water of Leith, you'll also see a stunning waterfall, right in the city centre. Next on the list is Dean Bridge, a magnificent feat of early 19th century engineering You'll also pass by an 18th century health spa. After that, you'll see the artistic community of Stockbridge and parts of Edinburgh's Historic New Town (1769). To conclude we'll walk through Princes Street Gardens, a magnificent scenic area with tremendous views of Edinburgh Castle, hear the varied past of this park and the story of a very brave bear who served in World War Two! Get away from the over-crowded Old Town and see the parts of the city you won't find by yourself. We walk on the flat and downhill the first hour, then the last 30mins is more uphill
Learn how to throw axes in Edinburgh
After a warm welcome to our throwing cages we'll jump right into a safety briefing. This covers how to stay safe, scoring and competition rules (we can't have any cheating at crunch time can we?). Then it is to the reason you guys are all here, the AXES. We'll run through the basic technique, how to hold and how to throw the axe. Once we're through this, it is down to you to have a go! I'll be on hand throughout the session, watching your throw, offering advice on how you can improve. What is really important to me is that you start to understand your own technique so when you finally leave, you're a fully fledged axe ninja! Once the basics are out of the way it's quickly onto a wide selection of new throws, double-handed, throwing with the axe head facing backwards, throwing 2 axes at once. These will all help you to develop a strong technique in time for our rapid fire round and then ..the team COMPETITON! Pit your skills against the others in your group, competition mode always brings out some strong axe game! Finally, If we have any time left over at the end I'll show you a trick shot or two that only the pro's get to use Other things to note We are unable to accept bookings from those under 16 years of age or pregnant. Guests will not be permitted to partake in the activity if they are intoxicated and please wear sensible shoes, no sandals!
Amazing Edinburgh Photo Shoot Experience
*This is a shared shoot of up to 3 guests, please book for the correct number of guests attending. If you are more than 3, contact me first* We will meet at Grassmarket Square, where we can get the introductions out of the way before we start exploring the Old Town! As we walk & talk, I will capture photos of you, giving posing tips, as well as interesting facts about the city and suggestions for places to check out during your stay! From here, I will lead you up the Vennel Steps, Greyfriar's Kirkyard, colourful Victoria Street, onto the medieval Royal Mile with it's many hidden closes and wynds that are easily missed by most travellers, Ramsay Gardens, Edinburgh Castle plus various stops along the way! We will visit iconic places & the more quaint, hidden parts of the city that truly capture it's essence. Within 2-3 days, I will send you 30 beautifully edited photos to your email that you can use for your social media or as beautiful memories in your home. This experience is great for solo travellers, friends, couples and anyone wanting to ditch the awkward selfie stick! It is also a fantastic way to see the more hidden and lesser known parts of Edinburgh in a short period of time. Please note- I will run this experience in all weather conditions. Rain and snow can make Edinburgh look even more stunning in photographs so please dress accordingly @edinburgh_photoshoots
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