If you traveled back in time to 1850, you would recognise life in Edinburgh, but if you went back to 1750, you very likely wouldn’t. What happened in those 100 years that not only changed the face of Scotland, but indeed the world?
This period in Scottish history influenced the golden era of the Enlightenment like no other. Edinburgh had the highest literacy rate in the world and was the place that Sir Walter Scott, John Knoxx and Alexander Graham Bell called home. It also was the birthplace of seminal inventions like the telephone, anaesthesia and even the world's first fire brigade.
Children (13 or under) accompanied by an adult can join the New Town Tour for free.
*Average tour length. The independent guides with whom we work have your best interests in mind; while the tour usually includes the sites and stories above and lasts this long, your tour may vary depending on what your guide thinks is best for your group!
- High Street
This 2.5-hour* walking tour covers:
- The world’s oldest Masonic Lodge and other secret societies
- The campaign to abolish slavery
- Why the entire area of Edinburghs New Town is a UNESCO World Heritage site
- Major inventions during the Scottish Enlightenment
- Sir Walter Scott and the colourful visit of King George IV.
- Scottish National Portrait Gallery
- James Braidwood and the world’s first fire service
- John Knoxx and the educational revolution
- The Ross Fountain and Princes Street Gardens
…and much more!