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“Fascinating, but over-priced.”

Real Mary King's Close
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US$20.06*
and up
The Real Mary King's Close Underground Guided Tour
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US$26.77*
and up
The Real Mary King's Close Underground Tour and Walking Overground Tour of...
Ranked #21 of 417 things to do in Edinburgh
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Fee: Yes
Recommended length of visit: <1 hour
Owner description: Hidden beneath the Royal Mile lies Edinburgh’s deepest secret: a warren of hidden ‘closes’ where real people lived, worked and died. For centuries they have lain forgotten and abandoned…until now. Visit Edinburgh's most famous Close, which makes Edinburgh's Hidden History unmissable.
Useful Information: Bathroom facilities
Reviewed 22 January 2014

Did this as a spur-of-the-moment thing on a day-trip to Edinburgh. The actual visit is a really interesting glimpse into the old underworld of high-rise tenements off the High Street and gives you a really good feel for that period. Our guide was brilliant (sorry, can't remember her name, but might have been the 'american with strange scottish accent' lassie) with anecdotes and history of the real people that lived in the Close, as well as good AV visuals too, although one of the last rooms had a very loud fan in it and the video sound was very quiet, so struggled to hear it!

It is overpriced for the time you get though (less than an hour) and felt that there were more rooms that we could have seen (maybe it depends which tour rotation you get?).
My main gripe about the value-for-money/service ratio is finding out the poor guides (who are clearly excellent at their job, judging from other reviewers) are only on minimum wage! When you have 20 odd people on one tour, most of whom have paid over £10 a ticket, is a bit sickening, particularly when there is a high level of risk associated with the tour and how vigilant the guide has to be! It's a shame that the people who are responsible for making a memorable experience are the ones who are least rewarded for it and that these commercial tourist enterprises are quite obviously only geared towards making as much money as possible.

Thank LadyD75
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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7,882 - 7,886 of 11,815 reviews

Reviewed 22 January 2014

Went on the tour by recommendation of friends. I went with a friend and we had difficulty finding it at first as the entrance near to St Giles' Cathedral wasn't immediately obvious. We were met by 'Robert Fergusson' or Alan who made the streets come alive. As it was just the two of us being toured we could ask as many questions as we liked and he did a good job of making it fun and making us laugh along the way.

Thank louisetbarker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
RealMaryKingsClose, Public Relations Manager at Real Mary King's Close, responded to this reviewResponded 24 January 2014

Thank you for your lovely review. We are pleased to hear you enjoyed your personal tour with Alan discovering Edinburgh's past. We hope to welcome you back in the future.

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Reviewed 22 January 2014

Visited this attraction following a recommendation. Our tour guide, Paul, was very knowledgable and presented the tour with great humour, even though the tour group was very small (five) he guided us through each room and, whilst obviously scripted, he managed to make us imagine how it was in our minds eye with his descriptive narration in each area.
very very interesting tour, bit uneven in places but well worth a visit.

Thank Tingar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 January 2014 via mobile

A must see. Getting up close and personal with history. Our tour guide was really great and very informative
Would go back

Thank gingernut268
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
RealMaryKingsClose, Public Relations Manager at Real Mary King's Close, responded to this reviewResponded 24 January 2014

What a great review, thank you! It is great to hear you found the experience fantastic and will return, we look forward to seeing you then.

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Reviewed 21 January 2014 via mobile

We were shown around by a gentleman called Chris T and I must say his humour, style and passion for the tour was first class. The tour was great, if a tad expensive, but overall well worth doing and something you surely have to do when in town! Don't be expecting a fully fledged underground town though, as that's a bit of a myth.

Thank Steve R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
RealMaryKingsClose, Public Relations Manager at Real Mary King's Close, responded to this reviewResponded 23 January 2014

Thank you for your high recommendation. It is great to hear you enjoyed the tour and that Chris delivered it with such passion.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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