The Real Mary King's Close

The Real Mary King's Close
2 Warriston's Close, High Street, Edinburgh, EH1 1PG
  • Opening times Open daily, times vary. Check website for details.
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  • Website www.realmarykingsclose.com
Photo of The Real Mary King's Close
A Dram of History

The Real Mary King’s Close is one of Scotland’s most unique historic sites. It took its name from one Mary King, a merchant burgess who resided on the close in the 17th century. Due to the building of the Royal Exchange in the 18th century, the close was partially demolished and buried, and was later closed to the public for many years. The area became shrouded in myths and urban legends with many tales of hauntings and murders. The Real Mary King's Close now operates as a tourist attraction with guided tours.

Beneath the famous Royal Mile, discover the hidden streets, homes and passageways where citizens of Edinburgh lived, worked and died in the 16th and 17th centuries. The Real Mary King's Close is Edinburgh’s only preserved 17th century street, featuring a labyrinth of Old Town alleyways. Tours in these subterranean chambers are led by guides in the character of real people who lived in the close. There are also souvenir shops and a courtyard café. Tours last one hour and are fully guided.

The Real Mary King’s Close is one of Scotland’s most unique historic sites. It took its name from one Mary King, a merchant burgess who resided on the close in the 17th century. Due to the building of the Royal Exchange in the 18th century, the close was partially demolished and buried, and was later closed to the public for many years. The Real Mary King's Close now operates as a tourist attraction with guided tours.

Beneath the famous Royal Mile, discover the hidden streets, homes and passageways where citizens of Edinburgh lived, worked and died in the 16th and 17th centuries. The Real Mary King's Close is Edinburgh’s only preserved 17th century street, featuring a labyrinth of Old Town alleyways. Tours in these subterranean chambers are led by guides in the character of real people who lived in the close. There are also souvenir shops and a courtyard café. Tours last one hour and are fully guided.

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Events at this venue

There are 6 events at this location

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Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the information displayed here is accurate, always check with the venue before attending.

A Dram of History: Tour and Whisky Tasting

Did you know that May is Whisky Month? Every year, whisky lovers celebrate it across the world. Immerse yourself in Scotland’s rich culture of distilling and drinking whisky. Join us for A Dram of History – an exclusive tour that combines history with a whisky tasting. In May, we’re giving you the opportunity to round off…

Fri 3 May

Sat 4 May

Fri 10 May

…and 6 more dates until 31 May

Herstory Tour: Women's History Month

March is Women’s History Month, and our specially curated Herstory Tours are back in 2024! Come and join us on a 1-hour social history tour dedicated to the women of Mary King’s Close. From Janet Chesney, whose family was the last to live and run a business on the historic street, to the famous Mary Queen of Scots … The…

Fri 1 Mar

£30 (children 5–15 £24)

Sat 2 Mar

£30 (children 5–15 £24)

Sun 3 Mar

£30 (children 5–15 £24)

…and 9 more dates until 24 Mar

History Tour & Gin Tasting at The Real Mary King's Close

Get ready for a “gin-credible” July at The Real Mary King’s Close! This tour and tasting experience delves into over 400 years of history in Edinburgh. Gin is very much a Dutch invention, originally formulated as a medicine… yet lesser known is its secret and illegal history of sale and production in Scotland. Therefore…

Fri 5 Jul

Sat 6 Jul

Fri 12 Jul

…and 5 more dates until 27 Jul

Medical History Tour at The Real Mary King's Close

Learn about Edinburgh’s rich medical history - Part of the Edinburgh Science Festival’s official 2024 programme Step back in time and embark on a captivating 1-hour guided tour through the heart of Edinburgh’s rich medical history. This unique experience takes you on a compelling journey down the only preserved…

Sat 30 Mar

£27 Adult; £22 Child (5-15yo)

Sat 6 Apr

£27 Adult; £22 Child (5-15yo)

Sat 13 Apr

£27 Adult; £22 Child (5-15yo)

Pride History Tour

Exclusive tours to celebrate Pride Month at The Real Mary King’s Close To celebrate Pride Month, The Real Mary King’s Close will be sharing its research in a series of educational and thought-provoking ‘Pride History Tours’, which have been designed to reveal the hidden histories of LGBTQIU+ community life in Edinburgh…

Sat 1 Jun

£30 (children 5–15 £24)

Sat 8 Jun

£30 (children 5–15 £24)

Sat 15 Jun

£30 (children 5–15 £24)

…and 2 more dates until 29 Jun

True Crimes Tours

Investigate real offences committed on Mary King’s Close… The closes of the Old Town have been shrouded in shocking tales of crime and punishment for centuries… but our True Crime Tours reveal a more honest story, rooted in fact. As is often the case, the reality ultimately proves darker and more fascinating than any…

Fri 2 Aug

Sat 3 Aug

Fri 9 Aug

…and 7 more dates until 31 Aug