Curious tales of the Old Town

Half day private walking tour

Why was a pet blackbird arrested in 1736?
What did a washerwoman insist on before she would pull philosopher David Hume out of a swamp?
Why was Robert the Bruce Edinburgh Castle’s most deadly enemy?

You really couldn’t make up the history of Old Edinburgh!

Seldom in the world can there have been so many odd events and strange goings-on in one town’s story as in Scotland’s capital, and telling these curious tales is what this tour is all about! Local doctor Moray Grigor is an Edinburgh native and lover of the city, and has been collecting some of the best of its stories to bring to you.

Starting just below the Castle, we’ll be touring down the world-famous Royal Mile, ducking into alleys and back courts as we go, and we’ll be hearing the most outlandish, amusing and fascinating anecdotes of the Old Town, many collected by Edinburgh publisher and author Robert Chambers right back in 1824. Some of the anecdotes were told to him by the great Sir Walter Scott!

In old Edinburgh, truth really was stranger than fiction – as Moray will be delighted to demonstrate!


tour essentials

  • Walking tour of the Royal Mile, capacity up to 8 guests
  • Meeting point Castlehill (very top of Royal Mile, just outside Contini Cannonball House)
  • Finish point Canongate Kirk, lower Royal Mile
  • Tour duration approximately 4 1/2 hours
  • Stories and anecdotes of old Edinburgh, many from Robert Chambers’ 1824 book ‘Traditions of Edinburgh’
  • Free cancellation up to 24 hours before tour
  • Social distancing and face coverings for guide and guests, hand sanitiser available
  • Subject to cancellation by 7 Hills Tours in case of severe weather
  • Some steps and uneven surfaces, extended walking – not recommended for guests with significant mobility, cardiovascular or respiratory problems
  • No lower or upper age limit