New Town

Guided Architecture Walking Tour

Guided Tour for the lovers of classical order

3-hour tour of New Town, just north of Princes Street. Learn about principles and details of Georgian Neoclassical planning and architecture during the walk through rational, ordered, symmetrical grid of streets of extravagant townhouses and romantic landscapes of private gardens. 

2.5-3h

English | French | Russian | Lithuanian

Start next to Register House
Finish in Charlotte Square

In Small Group

up to 8 persons
£ 27
pp
  • Tours will depart with minimum 2 people. If you are by yourself, pick a tour that already has customers signed up, or select a private tour option.
Popular

Private

starting from
£ 106
per tour
  • Minimum payment for a private tour equals 4 persons's fee. If you require a tour outside of our regular schedule, email for a specific date and time.​

Large Groups

from 9 persons
CUSTOM
PRICES
  • Great prices for study trips, and corporate visits. We can accommodate groups of up to 50 people (Max 25 per guide). Special theme requests welcome.

Full Description of the New Town Tour

This guided walk offers a good insight into city expansion, social segregation, accommodation typology, infrastructure, conservation and adaptation to the times.

The tour will start near Register House with an introduction of Edinburgh history that influenced the development of the New Town. As we approach the main axis of the area, the group will discover the principles behind the masterplan of the New Town, designed to chime with enlightenment ideas in a graphical form, and glorify the union between Scotland and England. 
Your guide will compare the villas by Robert Adam and William Chambers and surprise you with an unexpected ensemble in Thistle Court. 
To escape the hustle and bustle of the streets, we will enter the private Queen street gardens to admire the Georgian landscapes. 
Around the corner you will discover the allegedly oldest Masonic lodge in the world. 
Your guide will explain the typical elements of the New Town such as sunken basements, underground vaults, prolific chimneys, and fanlight windows. As we get up and close with the townhouses, various stone finishes will also be introduced.
Once out of the main boulevard, George street, the group will admire the magnificent palatial facades of Robert Adam’s Charlotte Square and appreciate beautiful ironwork such as streetlights, railings and bootscrapers.
Having explored the gridiron network of the first New Town, the group will enter the Greek Revival crescents of the Moray Estate and learn the true reason behind blind windows in Georgian architecture. 
We will complete our itinerary in the most photographed lane in Edinburgh, Circus Mews, previously a service street used only to keep horses and coaches. 

Things you can do before and after the New Town Tour

The sign outside Tourist information Centre

Edinburgh iCentre

If you get to our meeting point early, why not plan the rest of your visit to Edinburgh or Scotland by visiting the tourist information centre.

Rotunda and Dome with records - visit before guided tour

Register House

The guided tour starts just outside, so if you have time - wander inside this public building, marvel at Adam's beautiful rotunda and explore a secret Archivists' garden.

Birch tree art gallery Edinburgh logo - visit after guided tour

Birch Tree Gallery

Dundas Street in the New Town is filled with small cosy galleries, our favourite is Birch Tree which focusses on applied arts. The gallery has an original Georgian shopfront.