For a city of its size, Edinburgh has plenty of nooks and crannies to explore. Most tourists who come for a short weekend break spend most of their time in the charming Old Town. And for good reason, too- it’s a UNESCO world heritage sight that’s well deserving of its status. The place that most tourists and residents forget to explore, though, is the most unique area of all.
The infamous haunted underground city.
Located deep below the heart of The Old Town, there’s a whole city to explore which is a complete contrast to the streets above it. Rather than colourful terraced houses and grand castles, you’ll find cold, dark vaults and abandoned dungeons that serve as a reminder to what life was like for Edinburgh’s criminal underworld in years gone by.
And if you’re coming to the city, even just for a couple of days, it would be an absolute shame not to explore them.
When I was planning mine and Veeran’s trip to Auld Reekie, I knew that, as chief tour guide, a trip underground had to be in order.
Take a walk up the Royal Mile and you might notice that the city is pretty saturated with guides offering similar tours, but I do suggest you do your research.
We decided to do our tour with City of the Dead as it’s been dubbed one of the scariest ghost tours in The UK.
Our tour guide took us around a few different vaults- some more haunted than others, and we were told stories about the panoramic activities that have happened in Edinburgh’s underground vaults- particularly to tourists like us!
Having lived in Edinburgh, I thoroughly enjoyed the tour as it actually gave a bit more insight into the city’s grim past which I knew absolutely nothing about. Edinburgh has a bit of a horrible history and it’s completely fascinating.
If you’re not really into museums, or just like to have a wee fright (which, trust me, you most certainly will) then this is a really fun and entertaining way to learn all about it.
The tours cater to almost all age groups but I’d be wary about taking along anyone who might have a bit of a nervous disposition! It can get a bit jumpy and it is easy to freak yourself out with the ghost stories when you’re down in the pitch black vaults. I get a bit claustrophobic usually but I was ok in the underground vaults since it was pretty spacious.
The City of the Dead offer various tours to explore Edinburgh’s haunted past. We decided to do the Underground tour but they also offer a Graveyard Tour and a Double Dead Walking Tour which goes to both the graveyard AND the vaults.
In the future, I’d love to do their graveyard tour as I’ve heard from a few people that it’s actually even scarier than the vaults. Plus, you get to learn all about Edinburgh’s infamous body snatchers who stole bodies from their graves for cash rewards from medical research companies!
If you want more details on The City of the Dead’s tours, have a look at their website for more information.
I thought the tour was the perfect way to spend an evening in the city doing something other than going to the pub! If you’ve got a few nights in Edinburgh, Id definitely recommend exploring the haunted City of the Dead.
Disclaimer: I was invited by City of the Dead Tours to review their tour however, as always, all opinions are my own.