Tours & activities in Edinburgh

Edinburgh New Town Tour

Travel back in time and discover the history and the people of Edinburgh's New Town


Due to the unusual tourism situation currently developing, we have temporarily suspended this tour.

ABOUT THE Edinburgh New Town Tour

On this 3-hour walking tour you will learn about social campaigners, royal visits, and Scottish inventors. See the area's elegant Georgian homes and landmarks such as the Princes Street Gardens and Gothic Scottish National Portrait Gallery.


Your New Town Tour meets outside Frankie and Benny’s at 130 High Street and finishes by Princes Street Gardens.


If you traveled back in time to 1850, you would recognise life in Edinburgh, but if you went back to 1750, you very likely wouldn’t. What happened in those 100 years that not only changed the face of Scotland, but indeed the world?

This period in Scottish history influenced the golden era of the Enlightenment like no other. Edinburgh had the highest literacy rate in the world and was the place that Sir Walter Scott, John Knox and Alexander Graham Bell called home. It also was the birthplace of seminal inventions like the telephone, anaesthesia and even the world's first fire brigade. 

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The Edinburgh New Town Tour starts in front of Frankie & Benny's on 130 High Street by Tron Kirk

  • The world’s oldest Masonic Lodge and other secret societies
  • Why the entire area of Edinburgh's New Town
  • Major inventions during the Scottish Enlightenment
  • Sir Walter Scott and the colourful visit of King George IV.
  • Scottish National Portrait Gallery
  • James Braidwood and the world’s first fire service
  • The Ross Fountain and Princes Street Gardens



This tour doesn‘t run today

Inclusions & exclusions
What’s included
  • Local Spanish-speaking guide
Additional Information
  • Due to the old streets and uneven terrain, accessing parts of Edinburgh by wheelchair can sometimes be challenging. The New Town Tour is wheelchair accessible when accompanied by a non-disabled participant
  • All minors must be accompanied by an adult in order to join the tour
  • Our business is connecting great guides and smart travelers, and we're proud that so many local guides employ us to welcome travelers like you on their journey through some of the world's best cities. No two tours are alike, and the sites, stories, and length of the tour will vary depending on what your freelance guide decides is best. That's why the tours we promote never get stale or feel scripted, and why both independent guides and savvy travelers prefer SANDEMANs
The Edinburgh New Town Tour starts in front of Frankie & Benny's (130 High Street) Open in Google Maps
Tour start Tour starts here
End start Tour usually ends here
Tour usually covers

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What is a Select Tour?


Select Tours focus on a particular area or district of a city, a certain aspect of its history or culture, or take you outside the city on a day trip. Select Tours are perfect for those who have enjoyed an introduction to the city and wish to delve deeper into the stories the city has to offer. These tours often venture further afield and make use of local public transport.

As with the Free Tour, Select Tours are provided by local freelance guides in partnership with SANDEMANs NEW Europe, who bring their personal flair and expert knowledge to these specifically themed tours. Select tours have a fixed ticket price - we recommend purchasing your ticket in advance, either during a Free Tour or online.

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Participation in tours promoted by SANDEMANs NEW Europe is strictly on a voluntary basis. Neither SANDEMANs NEW Europe, nor the self-employed freelance guides who are the providers of the tours promoted by SANDEMANs NEW Europe, will be held responsible in any way for injuries to body or property incurred during tours. The tour guides reserve the right to deny participation in any tour, to any person, for any reason. Thank you for your understanding.

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