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Edinburgh’s Old Town: The Origin of Scottish Design

History through the lens of Edinburgh's most influential architects. Self-guided walking AUDIO TOUR, with an architectural designer as your narrator.

The audio tours are location aware, so you will hear directions and stories as you move. You can pause anytime. 

On this audio tour, you will explore the fascinating historical buildings that give the area its character, and admire award-winning contemporary architecture like the famous Scottish Parliament.

You’ll meander through narrow closes, beneath stepped gables and turrets, pausing at breathtaking viewpoints. The narrator will also show you the easy-to-miss details on the buildings, and share old maps and drawings as you walk Edinburgh’s famous Royal Mile.

Along the way, you’ll see:

  • The oldest tenement on the Royal Mile 
  • An unusual, lesser-known side of the National Museum of Scotland 
  • The difficult-to-find Riddle’s Court, once a merchant's house
  • The elegant Sugarhouse Close, a beautifully-restored 19th century brewery 
  • The sweeping views from Victoria Terrace 

Along the way, we’ll also answer questions like: 

  • Is the Old Town really that old? 
  • Which medieval Scottish castles inspired Victorian buildings in Edinburgh? 
  • Why did construction of the Scottish Parliament go ten times over budget?

COVID-19 information

Safe Travels

This business has confirmed that they have implemented, and will ensure ongoing compliance with, the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) Safe Travels protocols. The Safe Travels stamp is based on self-assessment and it is not a certification.

From £8.50 per adult

Departure days

  • Monday
  • Tuesday
  • Wednesday
  • Thursday
  • Friday
  • Saturday
  • Sunday

January — December

Contact details

Cobble Tales - Architecture Tours of Edinburgh

4, Hunter Square
United Kingdom

Tour information


  • Edinburgh
  • Edinburgh - City Centre




  • Walking


  • English


  • Architecture
  • Art
  • City
  • History

Covid 19 Facilities

  • COVID-19 measures in place
  • COVID-19 refund and cancellation policy in place
  • COVID-19 risk assessment completed
  • Online booking only

Tour prices

From £8.50 Per Adult

Book now

Prices are subject to change depending on season

Tour Stops

Cobble Tales - Architecture Tours of Edinburgh

Tour company information

Cobble Tales - Architecture Tours of Edinburgh

Explore Edinburgh’s history through its buildings on itineraries created by architects. We offer audio tours for individuals and private guided tours for groups in English and French. Every purchased tour supports the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings.

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