Guided tour

Edinburgh: Real Mary King's Close Guided Tour

Edinburgh: Real Mary King's Close Guided Tour

Activity provider: The Real Mary King's Close
Likely to sell out
Likely to sell out

From £22 per person

Explore Edinburgh’s hidden history beneath the Royal Mile on a fully-guided tour of the Real Mary King's Close. Discover what it was really like for the people who lived, worked, and died on the Close.

About this activity

Free cancellation
Cancel up to 24 hours in advance to receive a full refund
Covid-19 precautions
Special health and safety measures apply. Learn more
Reserve now & pay later
Keep your travel plans flexible—book your spot and pay nothing today. Learn more
Duration 1 hour
Check availability to see starting times.
Live tour guide
Audio guide included
French, Chinese, Italian, Spanish, Polish, Portuguese, Hungarian, Dutch, German


  • Discover Edinburgh's only preserved 17th-century street
  • Follow former residents and uncover their real stories
  • Experience over 400 years of history
  • Relax in the Burgh Courtroom with speciality drinks
  • Explore all things Mary King in the gift shop
Full description
Step down into Edinburgh’s hidden history at The Real Mary King’s Close, voted Scotland’s Best Heritage Tourism Experience. Discover over 400 years of history and learn about the intriguing stories of Edinburgh’s past residents. From the deadly plague epidemic to a famous royal visitor, there is a myriad of tales just waiting to be told. Journey through time and find out why the Close, once open to the skies and bustling with trade, came to be underground. An experience rooted in social history, this 1-hour character-guided tour also includes an immersive walk-through of the city’s uniquely preserved streets and spaces, all located underneath Edinburgh’s famous Royal Mile. Expect a truly unique glimpse into the city’s past. 
  • Entrance fee to the Real Mary King's Close
  • Food and drinks
  • Photographs
Not suitable for
  • Children under 5 years
  • People with claustrophobia
  • Wheelchair users
Covid-19 precautions

You must book this activity online because the ticket office is closed

Safety measures in place
  • All areas that customers touch are frequently cleaned
  • The number of visitors is limited to reduce crowds

Select participants and date



Meeting point

2 Warriston's Close, Royal Mile, High Street, Edinburgh EH1 1PG.

Open in Google Maps ⟶
Important information

Not allowed

  • Pets
  • Cameras
  • Smoking
  • Intoxication
  • Unaccompanied minors

Know before you go

  • The Real Mary King's Close is unsuitable for wheelchair access
  • Due to uneven surfaces and some steep inclines, sturdy footwear is recommended
  • There are 58 steps to climb down and 38 to climb up as part of the tour
  • Many areas are dimly lit, and some visitors may experience disorientation or claustrophobia
  • Due to the site’s underground nature, visitors with asthma are advised to bring any medication/inhalers
  • For health and safety reasons, children under 5 years old cannot be admitted. Children under 16 years old should be accompanied by an adult
  • Visitors under the influence of alcohol will not be permitted
  • Tour guides are equipped with a radio, so any visitor needing to leave may do so under escort from the duty manager
  • No photography is permitted during the tour
Customer reviews

Overall rating

4.4 /5

based on 931 reviews

Review summary

  • Guide
  • Value for money
  • Service
  • Organization

Sort by:

Traveler type:

Star rating:

Myself and my partner went to The Real Mary Kings Close and we really really enjoyed it. It was very informative loved the whole story about it and the history. Our guide Ben aka Robert the 270 year old poet was brilliant knew his stuff and was also funny we will be back again for sure .

18 October 2020

My daughter and I have just returned from a girlie couple of days away in Edinburgh as neither of us had been before. We enjoyed a lovely balance of shopping and tourist attractions,I’d booked a few things for us to do before going one of which was Real Mary’s Kings Close and I was so pleased I did and so was my daughter of 20 years, we thoroughly enjoyed the tour led by a young man called Tom who was fantastic, not only was he extremely informative from start to finish telling the story of the Close simply so you understood and retained the information but he was very amusing and engaged with the group perfectly, a big thank you to you Tom for being the perfect tour guide for us making our visit to the Close a very memorable one!

Read more

6 March 2020

This is a great place to go when visiting Edinburgh to learn about how people lived centuries ago. Our guide (think Ashley was her name) was very knowledgeable and funny. All the guides are in character of someone who once lived there so it's like watching a bit of theatre. The only thing I was disappointed with since my last visit was the fact the floors in most areas had been covered in wooden flooring rather than the original stone/earth floors. I suppose health and safety issues.

Read more

4 March 2020

Product ID: 76378