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In Summary

  • Stay above ground to follow the fate of villains and victims from Edinburgh’s dark past; and discover who still haunts the streets today 
  • Tailored for guests with mobility and sensory needs: entirely above ground, accessible to all 
  • Delve into the gore of Old Town Edinburgh’s darkest deeds and crooked characters 
  • Mercat exclusive audio devices - get immersed and lost in the stories...
  • Choosing Mercat is 'Good for you, Good for Edinburgh' - our team, community and environment

About this tour

Hear spirits echo through old city streets. 

Imagine the spot where the gallows once stood; a stage in the midst of a baying crowd. A rope slipped over a bagged head, cinched tight. The air falls quiet. A lever creaks, the trapdoor clatters, the rope snaps taut… 

On this daytime ghost tour you’ll hear of villains and victims from the city's dark past. There will be stories of those who haunt our shadowed streets — criminals, murderers and unsuspecting innocents — all whilst travelling to the very places they lived… and for some, met their untimely end.  

Starting at the Mercat Cross, a place with mixed history of horror and entertainment, you’ll hear tales of the restless souls set loose in the city, all whilst remaining above ground in Edinburgh’s Old Town. 

Criminal characters to sorrowful spirits 

The Royal Mile may be picturesque, but there is more to its streets than meets the eye. Led by our cloaked Storyteller you’ll explore the difficult and grim lives of those living amongst the cobbled closes… 

You’ll hear how the Edinburgh Mob took an execution into their own hands, the truth behind the ghastly apparition of Johnny One Arm and the reason you should be fearful if there is a certain number on the door of your accommodation.  

This tour transports you to 1800s Edinburgh: clues hidden in stonework , gruesome spectacles of punishments and deadly consequences and stories of those whose torment continued into the grave.  

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Tour details

Dates & times

Private group bookings

Reconnect with friends and family on a tour just for you.  Book online now, or if you'd like we're happy to help on email



  • Donate to help us reconnect vulnerable communities through storytelling - learn more about Our Stories, Your City.

  • Everyone has a warm welcome from us;
  • Local Edinburgh residents eligible for concession rates (EH postcodes)
    1. Complimentary tickets are available for carers, to book call us on 0131 225 5445.
    2. Read how we include you here
    3. See our Euan's Guide Reviews.
  • Language: English. Learn more on our FAQs
  • If you are a returning visitor and booked directly through Mercat Tours, you’re eligible for our Returner’s Reward


  • 1 hours 15 minutes

Step Count

  • 900

Tour location

  • Start point: Mercat Cross, High Street
  • End point: Tron Kirk

Need help booking?

Get in touch with us and one of our experts will be able to give you advice on our tours.

Ghostly Tales of Edinburgh's Royal Mile

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Souvenir Guidebooks

Don’t forget to buy a Mercat Tours souvenir guidebook with your ticket.

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Awarded 5 stars continuously since 2007 it recognises that we're always improving our tours and experiences for our visitors and team.

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