Edinburgh Bus & minivan tours

Our most recommended Edinburgh Bus & minivan tours

Edinburgh: 24-Hour or 48-Hour Hop-On Hop-Off Tour

1. Edinburgh: 24-Hour or 48-Hour Hop-On Hop-Off Tour

Explore Scotland’s capital city across one or two days on two typical hop-on hop-off bus tours. Choose between the City Tour or Britannia Tour, depending on your itinerary of preference. See historical landmarks such as Edinburgh Castle, the iconic Royal Mile, and the Palace of Holyrood House and learn about their historic significance from the onboard audio commentary. Hop on the bus at the first stop at St Andrew's Square and make sure to embark on the correct bus based on your Tour chosen: the Britannia and City Tour, depending on which attractions you would like to see. The City Tour will give customers the chance to see the Scottish Parliament, Dynamic Earth, and Palace of Holyrood House, whereas Britannia takes in the Royal Botanic Garden, Royal Yacht Britannia, and Haymarket. From either the top deck or the interior of the bus, you can explore the city in a convenient way, catching a glimpse of some iconic buildings and sights. With your ticket, you will also receive additional perks and discounts such as discounted entry to the Holyrood Distillery, a bus ride to Edinburgh Zoo, and many more benefits. Choose between a 24-hour or 48-hour pass with stops at a variety of locations along several routes. The City Tour includes: • St Andrews Square • Lothian Road • Grassmarket • Lauriston Place • Johnston Terrace • Edinburgh Castle, Lawnmarket • National Museum of Scotland • Holyrood Distillery • Museum of Edinburgh • Scottish Parliament • Dynamic Earth • Palace of Holyrood House • Burns Monument The Britannia Tour includes the following stops: • St Andrew Square • Royal Botanic Garden • Newhaven Harbour • Royal Yacht Britannia • Water of Leith • Broughton Road • Stockbridge • The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art • Haymarket • Edinburgh International Conference Centre • Bread Street • Johnston Terrace • Edinburgh Castle

Edinburgh: Vintage Bus Tour with Afternoon Tea or Gin

2. Edinburgh: Vintage Bus Tour with Afternoon Tea or Gin

Enjoy a sophisticated afternoon tea with a refreshing gin "pot-tail" (a cocktail in a teapot for larger parties) of your choice, served from the onboard trolley bar on a guided bus tour. Tuck into an afternoon tea consisting of a sandwich, petit fours, cupcake, warm scones, and mini quiches. Depart from Stance ZF on Waterloo Place. Get a warm welcome from the bus staff with a glass of prosecco. Sit back, relax, and indulge your senses whilst taking in magnificent sites of the city like Edinburgh Castle and the Scottish Parliament Building. With this afternoon tour, indulge in 2 traditional British classics – tea and gin – based on the option you choose. If you upgrade to the gin option, get flavored gin cocktails supplied by Edinburgh Gin Company served in teapots with aromatic herbs and topped with dainty edible flowers. Treat your taste buds to traditional scones with fresh whipped cream and jam, a selection of finger sandwiches, mini rolls or wraps, mini quiches, and a selection of petit fours and cakes, all washed down with as much tea and coffee as you can drink.

Edinburgh: Royal Attractions with Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tours

3. Edinburgh: Royal Attractions with Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tours

Make getting around Edinburgh's top sights easy with a 48-hour Royal Edinburgh hop-on, hop-off bus ticket. Dive into the history and culture of Scotland with access to Edinburgh Castle, the Royal Yacht Britannia, and the Palace of Holyroodhouse. Easy to use, the all-inclusive ticket is fantastic value if you want to go to Edinburgh Castle, the Palace of Holyroodhouse, and the Royal Yacht Britannia. The ticket also includes 48-hour unlimited travel on three of Edinburgh's hop-on-hop-off bus tours; Edinburgh City Sightseeing, Edinburgh Tour, and Majestic Tour. Use the bus to reach the attractions, leaving the city behind and heading to the coast at Newhaven through Edinburgh’s New Town. With stops for the Royal Botanic Garden and Royal Yacht Britannia, it couldn’t be simpler. As the bus returns to the city center, you can jump off at the Palace of Holyroodhouse and the Canongate section of the Royal Mile to walk up to Edinburgh Castle.

Edinburgh: Comedy Horror Ghost Bus Tour

4. Edinburgh: Comedy Horror Ghost Bus Tour

Enjoy a theatrical sightseeing tour of Edinburgh onboard the Ghost Bus, a beautifully refurbished vintage double-decker, painted in traditional midnight black. Learn about Edinburgh’s grave robbers, plague victims, and the ghosts that reside in the most haunted city in Europe. Explore the city's gruesome past, while admiring its most famous monuments, including Edinburgh Castle, Grassmarket, Greyfriar's Kirk, Holyrood Palace, and the Royal Mile. As you traverse the Old Town and New Town, visit the sites of murders, tortures, and executions. Hear about the infamous Burke and Hare, and the hundreds of women who were drowned or burned as witches. The bus, which belonged to the Necropolis Bus Company, boasts decorative features that include atmospheric lamps and window curtains. In 1967, the entire fleet was destroyed in a mysterious fire, and only one bus survived.

Edinburgh: 24-Hour Family-Friendly Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour

5. Edinburgh: 24-Hour Family-Friendly Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour

Explore Edinburgh at your own pace with a hop-on and hop-off open-top bus tour. Enjoy the onboard commentary that describes the history behind the city. Stop at locations like St Andrew Square, Johnstone Terrace, the Royal Mile. See sights like Edinburgh Castle and Grassmarket. Board the bus and begin your city adventure. Compare Edinburgh's Old Town, where families lived in cramped conditions and rubbish was thrown out of the windows, to the elegant Georgian New Town, with its 3 main streets and square at either end. Hear about the hangings that took place in the Grassmarket as you marvel at the impenetrable Castle Rock above you, and hear about historic attempts to capture Edinburgh Castle. Drive along the Royal Mile, which joins Edinburgh Castle to the Palace of Holyroodhouse. Use the 24-hour ticket to hop on and off as you please. With great visitor attractions, museums, galleries, and restaurants to suit every taste and budget, Edinburgh's got it all! Buses run every 30 minutes, making the following loop: Tour Stops: 1. St Andrew Square - Northside 2. Lothian Road - Waldorf Astoria 3. Grassmarket 4. Lauriston Place 5. Johnstone Terrace - Edinburgh Castle, The Scottish Whiskey Experience 6. Lawnmarket - Gladstone's End, The Real Mary King's Close 7. Chambers Street - National Museum of Scotland 8. St Mary's Street West 9. Canongate - John Knox House 10. Royal Mile - Scottish Parliament, Palace of Holyrood House 11. Dynamic Earth 12. Regent Road - Burns Monument

Edinburgh: Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Pass with 3 City Tours

6. Edinburgh: Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Pass with 3 City Tours

Save money and explore Edinburgh at your own pace with a 3-route hop-on hop-off bus tour ticket. Pick from a ticket that lasts for 24 or 48 hours. Explore the city with stop options like Grassmarket, Edinburgh Castle, National Museum of Scotland, and the Royal Botanic Gardens. Hop aboard and embark on your city adventure. Contrast the Old and New Towns, see the royal attractions of Edinburgh Castle and the Royal Yacht Britannia (entrances not included). Live guides provide English commentary on the Edinburgh Tour, while audio guides are available in up to 9 languages on the City Sightseeing Tour and the Majestic Tour. Hop on and off as often as you like at dozens of attractions, and enjoy unique, scenic views from the open-top upper decks. City Sightseeing Tour: Hear about the people and events that shaped Edinburgh, from the cramped conditions of the Old Town to spacious Holyrood Park, on a classic sightseeing tour in 9 languages. Enjoy Terry Deary’s Horrible Histories with the on board Horrible Histories Children’s Channel - history with all the gory bits left in! • Hanover Street • Princes Street Gardens • St. John’s Church • Grassmarket • Johnston Terrace • Edinburgh Castle • National Museum of Scotland • Museum of Childhood • Scottish Parliament • Our Dynamic Earth • Palace of Holyrood House • Burns Monument Edinburgh Tour: Enjoy the best views aboard an open-top bus, as live commentary in English brings Edinburgh’s history to life. Explore the Old Town and Georgian New Town, hopping off at 9 strategic stops. • Hanover Street • George Street • Charlotte Square • The Mound • Lawnmarket • Grassmarket • Our Dynamic Earth • Scottish Parliament • Canongate Kirk Majestic Tour: Leave the city center and head to the coast at Newhaven, with stops for the Royal Botanic Garden and Royal Yacht Britannia. This multi-language tour offers commentary through headphones in English, Gaelic, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Japanese, Mandarin Chinese and Russian. Return via the Palace of Holyrood House and the Canongate section of the Royal Mile. • Hanover Street • George Street • Royal Botanic Gardens • Ferry Road • Newhaven Harbour • Cruise Terminal • Ocean Terminal (Royal Yacht Britannia) • Leith Mills • Elm Row • Queen Mary’s Bath House • Queensberry House • Canongate Kirk

From Glasgow or Edinburgh: Scottish Whisky Tour

7. From Glasgow or Edinburgh: Scottish Whisky Tour

Discover the ultimate tour for whisky lovers and get a real taste of life in the Highlands and Scottish countryside. Your driver, a Scottish whisky ambassador, will share their knowledge and stories with you along the way, and may even stop for an extra dram or 2 along the way. Begin your adventure by heading across the Forth River and heading up to the Highlands where you will stop at your first distillery, the world-famous Dalwhinnie Distillery, which was built in 1897 and is Scotland's highest distillery. Break for lunch at the famous House of Braur, where you can also pick up gifts and souvenirs from your time in Scotland. Afterward, head to your second distillery, Blair Atholl, which is the oldest working distillery in Scotland and was founded in 1798. If time permits, stop at one more distillery on the way back to your hotel for one final tasting.

Edinburgh Private Tour

8. Edinburgh Private Tour

This eight-hour tour will include all of the most popular and main tourist attractions that Edinburgh has to offer, including some spots you will not find in any guide or tourist book. This tour is extremely popular with visitors who have plenty of time and want to see what Edinburgh and the Lothian's has to offer. You will take in Leith Links, The Scottish Parliament, The Palace of Holyrood House, St Giles, The Royal Mile and of course Edinburgh Castle. You will also be driven around Arthur Seat and the Crags for some of the most breathtaking views the city has to offer. Discover mystery and intrigue at the world famous Rosslyn Chapel. Dan Brown's Da Vinci Code put Rosslyn Chapel on the map, and visitors like you come from all over the world to see where the Da Vinci Code was filmed. This beautiful and mysterious building is known for its cryptic carvings and captivating legends about the Holy Grail, the Knights Templar, and Freemasonry.

Private Scottish Lowlands Countryside Tour

9. Private Scottish Lowlands Countryside Tour

Get picked up from your accommodation by your knowledgeable local guide. Drive to Trossachs National Park to take in some of the most breathtaking views in Scotland. See the famous Loch Venachar backed by low, rugged mountains and plenty of sheep. Stop in at the picturesque village of Callander and indulge your fantasies of Scottish countryside life.  Drive on to Blackness Castle, recently featured in the Mary Queen of Scots movie, or Linlithgow Palace, Queen Mary's actual birthplace. Check out Doune Castle (featured in Game of Thrones, Outlander, and Monty Python and the Holy Grail) or visit Stirling Castle, the historic site of the Battle of Banockburn where Robert the Bruce defeated King Edward's army. From there, it's a quick journey to the impressive monument built in memory of Sir William Wallace, a 13th-century Scottish hero. Last but not least, a stop at Deanston Distillery to sample the world-famous 18-year-old single malt is not to be missed. Let your guide know what interests you most and be sure to get the most out of your time in Scotland. 

Edinburgh: Mary, Queen of Scots Private Day Tour

10. Edinburgh: Mary, Queen of Scots Private Day Tour

Begin your tour with a visit to Mary's birthplace, Linlithgow Palace. Head to Holyrood Palace to see where Mary lived and used to hunt and ride in the adjacent park. See the extinct volcano, Arthur’s Seat, and enjoy some of the most breathtaking views the city has to offer. Afterwards, head to John Knox's House where John Knox planned and schemed to overthrow the queen. Notice that just underneath the house was where Mary’s favourite jeweller lived. Visit another location of tumultuous history where the queen's husband, Lord Darnley was murdered, now the New College if Edinburgh. Depending on the time of year, visit Falkland Palace to see where Mary used to play tennis. Go to Craigmillar Castle, where the queen was housed when she was unwell and may have plotted to have her husband murdered. Visit Blackness Castle and learn how it was used as a filming location. During your tour, take the opportunity to have lunch at a pub that dates back to 1316.

  • Guided tours
  • Hop-on hop-off tours
  • Private tours
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Frequently asked questions about Edinburgh

What top attractions are a must-see in Edinburgh?

What are the best day trips and excursions from Edinburgh?

The best day trips and excursions from Edinburgh are:

St Andrews

Other Sightseeing Options in Edinburgh

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What people are saying about Edinburgh

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 13,351 reviews

Definitely worth doing. Very informative and friendly staff. We booked the 48 hour ticket as we were in Edinburgh for 3 days. We actually lost our ticket on day 2 but Alan was very helpful and ensured it didn't stop us using the bus.

It was simply fantastic. A great start to my trip and a great look into the area's rich and creepy history. The tour guide was extremely charismatic and witty and really amplified the experience. Would definitely do it again.

This is my first visit to Edinburgh, and I must say that this service has greatly aided my exploration of the city. A single 24-hour ticket is simply insufficient for me. Instead, I should have gotten 48 hours.

Gaining tickets from one place made the whole visiting experience so much easier. The hop on hop off bus ticket saved our feet too!

Such a smooth process, regular and very friendly. Great way to see the city!