The historic Capital City of Scotland offers a wealth of things to see. Depart on a informative and entertaining discovery tour of Edinburgh and on to of of the regions best attractions at Rosslyn Chapel.
We start the tour from Edinburgh’s best viewpoint. In addition to offering stunning views of Princes Street and Edinburgh Castle, Calton Hill is also famed for its quirky and interesting architecture, including the National Monument of Scotland, which remains unfinished to this day.
Edinburgh Old Town
Learn about Edinburgh’s dark history, the effect of the Black Death, the great fire, and developments in the city that have led to its international prominence in the 19th centuary. We will be exploring much of the Royal Mile, its Closes, and its history. We will walk through the heart of the old town. From the Castle to the Palace The Royal Mile is approximately 1.2 miles through the heart of The old city of Edinburgh.
From the Castle Esplanade, you’ll get a sense of just how important Edinburgh Castle is in Scottish history on a full tour of the fortress. We’ll visit its many interesting buildings including St Margarets Chapel, the oldest building in Edinburgh. Learn the fascinating military history and gain an appreciation of its significance in Scottish and British history.
Victoria Street to The Grassmarket
In the past, the Grassmarket was used as a hanging place for Edinburgh’s criminals. You will hear about much folklore about executions from your guide, including the story of Half Hanging Maggie, one of Edinburgh’s most famous residents.
This city was the birthplace of Harry Potter, and Victoria Street in Edinburgh is the inspiration for Diagon Alley, with its winding cobblestone streets and an eclectic selection of colourful shops stacked on top of each other.
The Palace of Holyroodhouse is a palatial residence which sits at the very bottom of the Royal Mile. The impressive entrance courtyard and Palace dominate the scene as well as the adjoining Queen’s Gallery.
As the seat of the devolved national government, the Scottish Parliament is a modernist building next to the Palace of Holyroodhouse. The architectural juxtaposition is breathtaking!
Edinburgh New Town
This large scale development that was built in Georgian times across the valley from the old Edinburgh is a notable example of Georgian urban development. The first phase was completed in 1767 and was in response to overcrowding in the old city and in part to provide the nation with a new, enlightened city unlike any other.
Driving the short distance south from the city we come across Rosslyn Chapel in Rosslyn glen. Built in 1446 and renowned for its mysterious connections to the Knights Templar. It is also the location for the conclusion of the Dan Brown novel and film The Da Vinci Code, starring Tom Hanks and Audrey Tautou.
Rosslyn is one of the best examples of stonemasonry in Europe and there is an incredible amount of intricate stonework on the inside and outside of the Chapel. The Apprentice Pillar tells a story of jealousy and murder that is incredibly gruesome.
According to legend, under the floor of this mysterious and majestic church, there is a crucifixion cross buried under it which is believed to be the cross upon which Jesus was crucified. The holy grail, as well as the treasures of the knights Templar themselves may also be hidden underneath.
Our tour will also include a stop at Duddingston Village on the way back to the city. This small enclave of Edinburgh contains a delightful old pub (where some guests choose to end their tour when they reach it) and a charming church and graveyard.