Edinburgh: Royal Mile Scottish Enlightenment Walking Tour

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Tours Culture & history Walking tours Sightseeing Tours History & heritage Brooklyn Walking Tours

Discover how Scotland emerged from being virtually a bankrupt failed State to becoming the intellectual centre of Europe. Visit statues and landmarks around Edinburgh as the mystery unfolds.


  • Learn about the, often amusing, personalities of famous Enlightenment figures.
  • Discover Edinburgh's amazing Sights as we walk through the Old Town
  • Find out about the strong connections between Scotland and America.


We begin at St Giles Cathedral then work our way through Edinburgh's Old Town, ending up at Calton Hill, East End of Princes Street. On our way the statues and landmarks have their story to tell about the Scottish Enlightenment and some of the important people involved - not just the contribution they made but what kind of people they were. Some of the stories are funny, others surprisingly different to what you might expect. We touch lightly on topics which Scotland became famous for during the Enlightenment period: philosophy, economics, literature, architecture, education, medicine. It's great exercise for the brain and body too, but nothing too academic or tiring. However a reasonable degree of fitness is required as we will walk fairly quickly and eventually climb Calton Hill. Toilet facilities are available half way and at the end, but please go easy on the tea and coffee before we begin. Also, dress for the weather conditions, with waterproof coat if necessary and good walking shoes. At the end of our Tour you are free to explore further from Calton Hill onwards.


Translated sheets in French, German, Italian, Spanish, if required. Advance notice required.

Important Information

  • Dress according to the weather that day - sunglasses and umbrellas. A good pair of walking shoes is recommended.

Easy cancellation

Cancel up to 24 hours in advance for a full refund


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