Categories > Guides and Tips
- Stay at a hostel
- Throw an axe for fun
- Go on a comedy walking tour
- Do yoga at the park
- Book a whisky and chocolate tasting
- Join a beer-tasting tour
- Participate in a Potter Trail walking tour
- Experience the Edinburgh Festival Fringe
- Hang out at lovely Leith
- Discover the charms of the Royal Mile
- Visit the Scottish National Gallery
In the world of solo travel, getting lost isn’t a mishap – it’s a character-building experience. But, if you’d rather know your bearings at all times, then check out our list of the best things to do in Edinburgh for solo travellers.
From its vibrant cultural offerings to its quirky one-of-a-kind activities, Scotland’s capital has a plethora of attractions that cater to the intrepid solo traveller. If you’re ready to embrace the enchantment of Edinburgh solo, then bookmark this list, and let’s begin!
Stay at a hostel
Hostel Name: Royal Mile Backpackers
Address: 105 High St, Edinburgh EH1 1SG, United Kingdom
Reception Hours: 8 AM-11 AM, 3 PM-11 PM
Contact Details: +44 131 557 6120
Price: From £24/night
Like I always say, you can’t call yourself a backpacker unless you’ve stayed in a hostel. For solo adventurers, we recommend booking a room at Royal Mile Backpackers, a mere 5-minute stroll from the Edinburgh train station.
You can swap stories with fellow solo adventurers around the hostel’s communal lounges and a shared kitchen. Plus, their enthusiastic receptionists are readily available to aid you in organising walking tours, day trips, or just a day of pure exploration!
They welcome everyone aged 18 and above. Do note that their hostel is accessible by stairs only, so this is not the best choice for those with mobility issues.
If you don’t have plans that are set in stone, you can join the cool backpackers’ events they arrange 7 days a week, from vibrant pub crawls to traditional Scottish dancing.
Throw an axe for fun
Venue: Black Axe Throwing Co
Address: Unit 2, 27 Beaverhall Rd, Edinburgh EH7 4JE, United Kingdom
Operating Hours: Monday: 3 PM–6 PM
Wed-Fri: 3 PM–8:30 PM
Saturday: 12:30 PM–8:30 PM
Sunday: 12 PM–6 PM
Contact Details: +44 7751 193063
If you’ve been wanting to tap into your inner Viking but were worried about your friends’ reactions, now’s your opportunity to book a solo session! Go axe throwing at Black Axe Throwing Co, a premier urban axe-throwing destination in Edinburgh.
Their friendly and skilled instructors will lead you through the fundamental techniques of axe throwing. An average session might involve dual axe throws, laser-target practice, impressive trick shots, a high-paced round, and more.
For those captivated by the magic of Game of Thrones or enraptured by the realm of The Witcher, then we think this solo adventure is ideal for you.
Remember to arrive 10-15 minutes early because late arrivals won’t be able to join, and refunds won’t be issued.
Go on a comedy walking tour
Event Name: Mountebank Comedy Walk of Edinburgh
Meeting Point: Monkey Barrel Comed, 9-12 Blair St, Edinburgh EH1 1QR, UK
Contact Details: [email protected]
Price: £19/person, age 16+ only
Inclusions: 2-hour walking tour
For those who love to laugh but are too shy to laugh alone, then join the Mountebank Comedy Walk of Edinburgh. The host, Daniel, isn’t just a local comedian; he’s your guide to learning about the city in the most entertaining way imaginable.
This adult-oriented tour guarantees a cascade of laughter alongside adult themes and spirited language, all delivered in Daniel’s signature Scottish accent. He’ll unveil captivating stories about the city, and even give a few glimpses into his own life.
Bring your sense of humour and be prepared for a tour filled with laughter and lively banter!
For those allergic to dogs, make sure to bring your anti-allergy medication since the host brings his adorable dog, Brahan aka ‘The Bonnie Prince,’ on these walks.
Do yoga at the park
Address: Inverleith Park, Arboretum Pl, Edinburgh EH3 5NY, United Kingdom
Operating Hours: Summer Months (April to August), 9:30 AM- 10:30 AM
Duration: 1 hour
Organised by Amanda M, go for a serene solo yoga experience at Inverleith Park during the summer months. This is the ideal solo activity for meditation enthusiasts, fitness aficionados, or eager beginners who’d like to give yoga a try.
Here, you can follow a guided yoga session in the tranquil Sundial Garden, leaving you remarkably refreshed. Plus, for solo travellers in Edinburgh, it’s an excellent opportunity to connect with fellow participants post-class.
Don’t forget to wear appropriate yoga clothing, bring your own yoga mat or towel, and donate some cash to the organisers!
Book a whisky and chocolate tasting
Address: 4-7 N Bank St, Edinburgh EH1 2LP, United Kingdom
Contact details: +44 131 225 7224
Operating hours: Mon-Sun: 10 AM–1 AM
Duration: 1 hour
Inclusions: Four types of premium whiskies
Local Edinburgh-made chocolates
For solo travelling foodies, we suggest booking a whisky and chocolate tasting at Whiski Rooms. This indulgent experience combines carefully curated whiskies with premium Edinburgh-made chocolates.
In this session, priced at only £35 per person, you can savour their artful whiskey and chocolate pairings. Their instructor will lead you through these delectable combinations while unravelling the intriguing backstories of both the treats and the tipples.
If you found their whisky and chocolate tasting a delight, do try their whisky and cheese tasting experience as well. This is another flavour-packed solo adventure that you wouldn’t want to miss!
Join a beer-tasting tour
Host: ScotBeer Tours
Event: Edinburgh Beer Tour
Contact Details: +44 2039 620237
Meeting Point: Old Town, Edinburgh
Duration: 2 hours
Price: £40 per adult
If you’re a history buff and a beer aficionado, then join the Edinburgh Beer Tour. Here, you’ll visit three charming local pubs in Edinburgh’s Old Town, and also uncover how Scotland earned its reputation as the globe’s largest bottled beer exporter.
This tour will quench your thirst for knowledge – and beer! – with local brewery beer tastings. As a keepsake, you can take home their local pub guide, ensuring you’re ready for more adventures.
For only £40, everything is included – from the pub pints to the camaraderie shared with fellow enthusiasts. We really enjoyed this tour, so we know you would, too!
If you tried this adventure solo and would like to go again with friends or family, you can book a private tour with them. For this group tour, you only need a minimum of 6 people and a deposit of £100.
Participate in a Potter Trail walking tour
Host: Potter Trail
Event: Free Potter Trail Public Tour
Meeting Point: The statue of Greyfriars Bobby
Operating Hours: Mon-Sun: 12 PM–1:30 PM
Contact Details: The Potter Trail (@pottertrail)
Admission Prices: Free
For solo adventurers and devoted Harry Potter enthusiasts, we recommend going on a free 75 to 90-minute Potter trail public tour. From humble beginnings, the Potter Trail has grown into an extraordinary experience with 10 guides and 3 tours per day.
This original walking tour consistently ranks among the top 5 highest-rated tours on TripAdvisor. This magical adventure brings the city’s mystical aspects to life, showing walkers the real-life Diagon Alley and even Lord Voldemort’s grave!
The tour guides are trained comic performers, infusing each tour with an unparalleled level of enthusiasm and theatrical flair. Be prepared to be swept away by their infectious energy, ensuring an unforgettable experience that you won’t want to miss.
Even though the tour is free, donations are highly encouraged – £15 to £20 will do. Some of the proceeds will help support the Scottish Trans Alliance, a group that strives to improve gender identity and gender reassignment equality and rights.
Experience the Edinburgh Festival Fringe
Contact Details: https://www.edfringe.com/contact
Duration: Three weeks in August
If you want to attend a huge cultural event in Edinburgh, then mark your calendars for the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Every August, Edinburgh comes alive with creative energy, from comedy and cabaret shows to circus acts, musicals, and even the opera.
Fringe Festivals are all about helping independent artists and giving different communities a chance to enjoy unique theatre and live shows. Plus, you can enjoy these shows without spending too much – definitely backpacker-friendly!
There are more than 300 official Fringe venues, scattered across various spots in Edinburgh from street corners and cafes to bigger theatres with classic layouts. These places offer a diverse range of performances for everyone to enjoy.
To make the most of this art festival, make a personalised schedule of shows you want to see, but also leave some room for spontaneity. You might stumble upon hidden gems you hadn’t planned for!
Hang out at lovely Leith
Another beautiful Edinburgh spot we recommend for solo travellers is Leith. This vibrant maritime district is a haven for those seeking unique experiences; you can wander through its colourful streets that boast history, modern art, and diverse culinary delights.
You can visit the iconic Royal Yacht Britannia, offering a glimpse into royal life at sea. Leith’s lively waterfront hosts, bustling markets, and charming cafes also provide perfect settings to interact with locals.
From historic docks to creative spaces, Leith offers solo travellers a dynamic blend of authenticity, culture, and community.
Join a local workshop or event in Leith – whether it’s a cooking class, art exhibit, or community gathering. It’s a fantastic way for solo travellers to engage with the neighbourhood’s creative spirit!
Discover the charms of the Royal Mile
Address: The Royal Mile, 549 Castlehill, Edinburgh EH1 2ND, United Kingdom
Operating hours: Open 24 hours
For solo travellers, the Royal Mile in Edinburgh is a captivating area waiting to be explored. This iconic stretch of cobblestone streets is adorned with charming architecture, quirky boutiques, and inviting cafes.
As you stroll along – snapping Insta-worthy pics as you go – you’ll see vibrant street performers, captivating museums, and historic landmarks like Edinburgh Castle. Its bustling atmosphere offers a chance to mingle with locals and fellow travellers.
Engage with the lively street performers and artisans along the Royal Mile. Chat with them, ask questions, and get a glimpse into the local culture – it’s a cool way to make your solo journey even more interactive and memorable.
Visit the Scottish National Gallery
Address: The Mound, Edinburgh EH2 2EL, United Kingdom
Contact details: +44 131 624 6200
Operating hours: Mon-Sun: 10:00 AM–5:00 PM
Facilities: Hearing Loop, Accessible Parking, Accessible Toilets, Cafe, Wifi
Admission Price: Free
Solo globetrotters seeking artistic inspiration will find their sanctuary at the Scottish National Gallery. This cultural gem houses an extensive collection of European masterpieces, including works by Van Gogh, Rembrandt, and Turner.
Wander through the gallery’s halls adorned with timeless classics and groundbreaking modern pieces, each brushstroke narrating a unique story. The gallery’s strategic location near Princes Street offers panoramic views of the iconic Edinburgh Castle.
With its tranquil ambiance and diverse artistry, the Scottish National Gallery promises an immersive solo experience, where you can lose yourself in the world of art.
Book one of the gallery’s guided tours to gain deeper insights into the artworks and their historical context. This is an excellent way for solo travellers to enhance their experience.