Edinburgh, the capital city of Scotland, is a location rich in history, gorgeous architecture, and a thriving cultural scene. While there are many paid attractions to explore, there are also plenty of cheap things to do in Edinburgh, allowing you to experience the city under a budget. From exploring historic landmarks to enjoying beautiful parks and gardens, here are some of the best free activities, affordable activities, and cheap things to do in Edinburgh. Whether you’re a history buff, a nature lover, or just want to soak in the ambience of this wonderful city, there’s something for everyone in Edinburgh’s variety of free and low-cost activities. Discover the city’s hidden beauties without breaking the bank and maximise your budget while enjoying everything Edinburgh has to offer.
Let us take a look at some of the Cheap Things to Do in Edinburgh
1. The Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh
Edinburgh’s Royal Botanic Garden is a 70-acre botanical garden that offers cheap things to do in Edinburgh, showcasing natural beauty, horticultural exhibits, and educational activities. Located about a mile north of the city centre, it provides a peaceful respite from the bustling metropolis. The garden boasts themed areas like the Rock Garden, Woodland Garden, and Victorian Temperate Palm House, offering unique and immersive experiences for visitors. It also provides opportunities to explore plant conservation, botanical research, and biodiversity through guided tours, workshops, and special displays. Entry to the garden is free, making it an affordable and accessible destination for nature enthusiasts, families seeking outdoor activities, or anyone looking for a tranquil retreat. While some special exhibitions or events may have admission fees, the Royal Botanic Garden is a must-visit attraction in Edinburgh that offers a wealth of cheap and enjoyable experiences for all.
2. Scottish National Portrait Gallery Tours and Tickets
The Scottish National Portrait Gallery in Edinburgh offers a captivating experience for art enthusiasts and history buffs alike. The neoclassical structure on Queen Street has a vast collection of pictures of prominent persons from Scotland’s history, culture and beyond. The gallery’s wide collection of portraits celebrates Scotland’s rich legacy, ranging from historical luminaries such as Mary, Queen of Scots, and Robert Burns to current giants such as Sir Walter Scott and Ewan McGregor. Guided tours provide insights into the collection, artists, and historical context. The gallery also hosts temporary exhibitions, some of which are free of admission. The gallery also features a café and shop, offering unique gifts, books, and artwork inspired by the gallery’s collection.
3. Old Town Walking Tour History and Tales in Edinburgh
The Old Town Walking Tour History and Tales in Edinburgh is a popular guided tour through Edinburgh’s Old Town, known for its cheap things to do in Edinburgh. Led by knowledgeable guides, this affordable and accessible option offers a fascinating journey into the city’s rich history, culture, and legends. The tour explores the Royal Mile, the historic heart of the city, and highlights significant sites like St Giles’ Cathedral, Mercat Cross, and Canongate Tolbooth. Guides often dress in traditional Scottish attire, adding authenticity and charm to the experience. The tour offers a comprehensive overview of Edinburgh’s Old Town, showcasing medieval architecture, hidden courtyards, and atmospheric corners. By joining this tour, you can delve into the city’s past and discover the stories that make Edinburgh such a captivating destination, all while enjoying cheap and budget-friendly activities.
4. Edinburgh Witches and History Walking Tour
The Edinburgh Witches and History Walking Tour is an immersive experience that offers cheap things to do in Edinburgh, taking visitors through the city’s Old Town while exploring the dark history and folklore surrounding witches and witchcraft. Guided by knowledgeable experts, this affordable tour takes participants through the historic streets and closes off the Old Town, where chilling events unfolded centuries ago. The tour includes tales of witch trials, hunts, and superstitions, as well as haunted locations, ghost stories, and legends associated with certain sites. It is an ideal choice for those interested in the occult, historical mysteries, and the rich folklore that continues to captivate visitors today. By joining this tour, you can delve into Edinburgh’s eerie past and discover the intriguing stories that shroud the city, all while enjoying a budget-friendly and fascinating experience.
5. Ghost and Gore Walking Tour of Edinburgh
The Ghost and Gore Walking Tour of Edinburgh is a thrilling adventure that offers cheap things to do in Edinburgh, taking visitors through the city’s haunted streets and alleyways under the guidance of expert guides. This affordable tour explores the chilling tales of paranormal encounters, supernatural phenomena, and historical events associated with Edinburgh’s haunted sites. Participants will have the opportunity to visit locations known for their ghostly activity or connection to macabre events, such as the Blair Street Underground Vaults. The tour includes stops at notable landmarks, including the haunted Blair Street Underground Vaults, where stories of the vaults’ dark past and restless spirits are rumoured to wander. While the tour typically has a fee, the expert guides create a chilling atmosphere, making it a memorable and budget-friendly experience for those interested in Edinburgh’s supernatural stories, macabre tales, and dark history.
6. Edinburgh Harry Potter Self-Guided Private Tour
The Edinburgh Harry Potter Self-Guided Private Tour offers a unique and magical experience for Harry Potter fans visiting Edinburgh, with cheap things to do in Edinburgh. This customizable tour allows visitors to explore iconic filming locations and landmarks in the city at their own pace. Participants are provided with a detailed guidebook and a map that outlines significant sites associated with the Harry Potter series, offering information about each location and J.K. Rowling’s inspiration. The tour often includes stops at notable sites like The Elephant House café, Greyfriars Kirkyard, and Victoria Street, which influenced the design of Diagon Alley. As a self-guided tour, participants are responsible for navigating the city and following the provided guidebook or map, as live guides are not typically included. This budget-friendly option allows Harry Potter enthusiasts to immerse themselves in the magical world of Harry Potter while exploring Edinburgh on their own terms.
7. Edinburgh Hidden Gems Old Town Walking Tour
The Edinburgh Hidden Gems Old Town Walking Tour is an immersive exploration of Edinburgh’s hidden treasures, offering cheap things to do in Edinburgh. Led by experienced guides, this tour provides a unique perspective on the city, unveiling lesser-known stories, architecture, and hidden corners. With knowledgeable guides leading the way, you’ll meander through winding streets, narrow closes, and hidden courtyards, while hearing fascinating anecdotes, historical facts, and insider knowledge about the city’s hidden gems. The tour typically includes stops at off-the-beaten-path locations, hidden architectural gems, and lesser-known historical sites, offering insights into their significance and intriguing stories. These hidden spots provide a different perspective on the city and create a sense of discovery and exploration. While the tour may have a fee, it offers an affordable and rewarding experience for those seeking to uncover Edinburgh’s hidden treasures. It’s recommended to check the website for pricing, availability, and any additional inclusions.
8. Haunted Edinburgh: The Bloody Past Exploration Game
The Haunted Edinburgh: The Bloody Past Exploration Game is an interactive and immersive experience that offers cheap things to do in Edinburgh. Combining elements of a scavenger hunt, city exploration, and storytelling, this affordable game provides participants with a mobile app or guidebook to navigate the city’s streets and landmarks while uncovering its dark and haunted history. The game incorporates historical facts, legends, and local folklore, allowing participants to follow clues, solve puzzles, and complete challenges along the way. As participants progress through the game, they are taken to significant locations with connections to Edinburgh’s haunted past, including atmospheric closes, ancient graveyards, and hidden corners. This engaging experience allows participants to engage with the city’s history, test their problem-solving skills, and have a memorable and spooky adventure. By joining the Haunted Edinburgh game, you can explore the city’s haunted past while enjoying a budget-friendly activity in Edinburgh.
9. The Best of Edinburgh’s Amazing Old Town
“The Best of Edinburgh’s Amazing Old Town” is a guided tour that highlights the city’s cheap things to do in Edinburgh, focusing on the Old Town’s rich history, gorgeous architecture, and vibrant culture. Led by knowledgeable guides, this affordable tour takes visitors through the captivating streets and alleys, providing insights into the city’s fascinating past and showcasing its iconic landmarks. The tour may include visits to renowned sites such as St Giles’ Cathedral, Edinburgh Castle, Grassmarket, and Victoria Street. As a UNESCO World Heritage site, the Old Town offers a wealth of history and intriguing stories about key events, influential figures, and unique characteristics that shaped Edinburgh. While the tour may have a fee, it is recommended to check the website for pricing, availability, and any additional inclusions. By joining this tour, you can experience the best of Edinburgh’s Old Town while keeping your budget intact.
10. Romantic Edinburgh True Love Exploration Game
The Romantic Edinburgh True Love Exploration Game is an interactive adventure that offers cheap things to do in Edinburgh, taking participants through the city’s streets, landmarks, and hidden corners while uncovering romantic tales and love stories. Participants engage in a series of clues, puzzles, and challenges to discover Edinburgh’s most romantic spots. This affordable game incorporates historical facts, local legends, and charming anecdotes, creating an engaging and delightful experience for participants. The game typically leads participants to locations known for their romantic significance, including picturesque viewpoints, enchanting parks, hidden gardens, and charming streets. Participants can enjoy the game at their own pace and convenience, making it suitable for individuals, couples, or groups seeking a romantic and playful experience in Edinburgh. By joining the Romantic Edinburgh True Love Exploration Game, you can immerse yourself in the city’s romantic ambience and enjoy a memorable and budget-friendly activity in Edinburgh.
Edinburgh offers a variety of cheap things to do in Edinburgh, catering to budget-conscious visitors. From affordable walking tours and self-guided explorations to exploring historic landmarks and museums, there are plenty of budget-friendly activities to enjoy. Nature lovers will enjoy the city’s parks and green areas, while art fans will find galleries, exhibitions, street performances, live music, and events that are reasonably priced. For bookworms, literary landmarks like the Writers’ Museum and the city’s storytelling and literary festivals provide opportunities to immerse oneself in the world of literature without spending a fortune. With a little planning and exploration, visitors can create a memorable and affordable experience in the charming city of Edinburgh. Visit Hermagic for more information on things to do in Edinburgh under a budget and affordable activities in Edinburgh.