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The Real Mary King's Close: 1-Hour Guided Tour

Mobile Ticket
1 hr
Free Cancellation

Discover the true story of how a network of Old Town streets, also known as Mary King’s Close, came to be buried forever beneath the Royal Mile! Get a glimpse into 17th-century Edinburgh history on this 1-hour character-guided tour.


  • Explore The Real Mary King’s Close, a set of concealed alleyways located under the Royal Mile
  • Go on a 1-hour character guided tour and discover the highs and lows of 17th-century living
  • Learn about Mary King, a merchant and burgess who lived in the area during the 17th century
  • Listen to eerie stories of disease, plague doctors, death, and paranormal activities that surround the Close


  • Admission to the Real Mary King's Close
  • Costumed guide
  • Optional audio guide


  • Gratuities
  • Transportation

strict cancellation policy

Cannot be canceled, amended, or rescheduled

your experience

Set foot into Edinburgh’s secret history at The Real Mary King’s Close, voted Scotland’s Best Heritage Tourism Experience. Located beneath the city’s famous Royal Mile, this concealed warren of streets is where people from bygone centuries lived, worked, and died. Spend your time here discovering 400 years of history and listen to intriguing stories of Edinburgh’s 17th-century residents. From the deadly plague epidemic to a visit by a famous royal personality, there is a myriad of stories just waiting to be told.

As you explore the Close, find out why it moved from being open to the skies and bustling with trade, to going underground. You will get to peek inside a 19th-century sawmaker's workshop and walk the centuries-old footsteps along Mary King's Close. Keep your eyes peeled, and you may even catch a glimpse of Mary King herself! Immerse yourself in Edinburgh’s social history on this 1-hour character-guided tour, all while walking through the city’s uniquely preserved streets.

know before you go

COVID-19 Safety Measures

  • Compulsory masks
  • Social distancing- 2 meters
  • Customer touchpoints are frequently sanitized

Important Information

  • Children aged below 5yrs are not allowed to visit due to health and safety restrictions
  • Tour guides run the tour in English only. However, you can request for an audio guide (available in French, German, Spanish and Hungarian) before the tour begins
  • The Real Mary King's Close is unsuitable for wheelchair access
  • Due to uneven surfaces and some steep inclines, it is recommended that you wear proper footwear
  • Many areas are dimly lit, and some visitors may experience disorientation or claustrophobia


  • 1 Sep to 31 Oct - Open Mon to Sun
  • 1 Nov to 31 Jan 2021 - Open Thu to Sun
  • Tours start every 30 minutes between 10:00 AM and 4:00 PM

Discounted Tickets

Ages 5-15yrs, students and seniors aged 60+yrs enjoy reduced ticket pricing (carry a valid photo ID)

my tickets

  • Your voucher will be emailed to you shortly
  • Please display your mobile voucher along with a valid photo ID to your guide
  • If you have purchased reduced-price tickets, please carry your valid photo ID proof for verification. Students must show their valid student IDs
  • Kindly ensure that you arrive 10-15 minutes before the start time of your tour to avoid any delays

Meeting Point

  • Meet your tour guide at the Real Mary King’s Close
  • Address: Warriston's Close, 2, High St, Edinburgh EH1 1PG, United Kingdom
  • To locate the meeting point on Google Maps, simply search for - Real Mary King’s Close
    Get Directions to the Meeting Point

Getting There

By Rail

  • The quickest route is to climb the 100 steps at the foot of Warriston’s Close
  • From Waverley Bridge, walk to the mini-roundabout. Cross over onto the bottom of Cockburn Street, and look up. You should spot the sign for Warriston’s Close on your right. The venue is right at the top of the stairs on your left
  • To avoid the stairs, continue to walk up Cockburn Street until you meet the junction with the Royal Mile. Turn right at the top, and continue until you see the entrance on the right

By Bus

  • Simply choose a Lothian Bus service that stops near the high street or bridges

By Car

  • Car parking is very limited in Edinburgh’s Old Town. There are a few spaces dotted around, but most are snapped up early. Find out more on Edinburgh City Council’s website

By Taxi

  • Access to the Royal Mile is limited, but a taxi can drop you off directly outside the front door

By Bicycle

  • Simply follow the signs for the Old Town and High Street to get here. There are cycle racks immediately outside the entrance


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