Lothian Recommends: The best ways to enjoy Halloween in Edinburgh

With its looming examples of Gothic architecture, gruesome past and reputation for cultivating a chilling array of myths and legends, there are few better places to be on the scariest day of the year than Edinburgh.

Samhuinn Fire Festival, Edinburgh
Samhuinn Fire Festival, Edinburgh

The city comes alive on Hallowe’en as locals and visitors alike get the opportunity to explore the Capital in a totally different way – experiencing the frightful tales that have made Edinburgh one of the most haunting cities in the country.

Here are our recommendations on the best ways to see Edinburgh this Hallowe’en.

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For a truly immersive and unique experience, join the procession of drums, fire and characters from Celtic lore as the Samhuinn Fire Festival makes its way through the dark streets of Edinburgh. This year’s celebrations are even bigger and better than before, with the festival taking place on Calton Hill, giving hundreds of locals and visitors alike the chance to witness this once-a-year spectacular event.

he Real Mary Kings Close is a unique five star tour experience, inviting guests to discover the intriguing real stories of Edinburghs past residents.

The Edinburgh Dungeon is renowned for its innovative Hallowe’en celebrations and this year is no different as it takes guests on a journey into the Capital’s dark and disturbing past to perform a seance to contact the spirit of Madgy Docherty – the last person killed by Burke and Hare on the night of Hallowe’en in 1828.

The perfect Hallowe’en adventure for younger children, the Botanics allows them to explore a spooky trail through the gardens while learning about some of the most disgusting flora and fauna in the natural world. Kids who successfully complete the trail can also earn themselves a magical gift at the end of the route through the gardens.

Already known as one of the most haunted locations in the Capital – with tales of paranormal activity dating back to the 17th century – Mary King’s Close pulls out all the stops this Hallowe’en to take guests below Edinburgh’s surface and into the history of misadventure, myth and legend with tales of witch hunts from the city’s past.

Exploring the inside of an old mill already sounds like the start of a horror film, but at Almond Valley, you can live it in a series of events running across the month. For the full experience, grab a trail map and solve the disappearance of paranormal investigator Dr Weebit Fiat, who was last seen entering the old mill at nightfall.