Q: Are Edinburgh Expert Walking Tours public or private events?
A: All my tours are guaranteed private to you, but I run combination of fixed route options and fully customised tour packages. During August my Beyond the World's End tour will be offered with both a private and a public tour option.
Q: How much are your private tours?
A: I price my tours by the number of people and the length of the tour, and all tour pricing can be found here.
Q: How long are your private tours?
A: All customised tours are tailored to your needs, from two hours up to a full day. In terms of distance, we'll cover a minimum of 1 mile per hour walked. There are some sample tour itineraries here.
For the fixed route options, the Royal Mile tour is 3 hours in length, while the New Town and Old and New Towns tours can be either 2 or 3 hours in length - the longer tour options cover a greater distance, and have different content, although they all start and finish at the same points.
Q: Are tours suitable for children and families?
A: I generally suggest tour content is suitable for ages 12 and up, and is probably most likely to engage teens and older children with an interest in history. For family groups, bringing my French bulldog Monty along for the walk can help to keep children engaged on the tour!
Q: Do you offer driving tours instead of walking tours?
A: No - all my tours are on-foot around Edinburgh's city centre. Edinburgh is best explored on foot, and it's small enough to be able to do so relatively easy. But when you book a private tour with me, you'll get an exclusive discount off an out-of-town tour with our driving tour partners Monarch Tours!
Q: Can you take us into Edinburgh Castle?
A: I don't take tours into any of the paid entry attractions - Edinburgh Castle in particular limits where guides can operate, with only six points around the grounds (and not inside any of the buildings) where guides can stop with groups. I don't feel I can add much value to a visit on that basis - far better to take advantage of their free introductory tours, and/or their great audio guide option, and plenty of staff who are always happy to answer your questions!
I'd prefer to use our tour to show you areas of the city you wouldn't necessarily find or explore by yourselves.
Q: What happens if our travel plans change at short notice?
A: My terms and conditions have full details of my refund and data protection policies, but broadly I am happy to be as a flexible as possible in offering you the opportunity to rearrange private tours if your plans alter. Contact me as soon as possible to discuss the options.
Q: What languages are your tours available in?
A: I have some rudimentary French and very basic German, but all my tours are conducted in English.
Q: Are you able to advise on things to see and do in Edinburgh?
A: Absolutely! All bespoke private tour packages include exclusive access to my Edinburgh Essentials information directory, with over 50 pages of links, tips and advice to help you plan your visit, with information about attractions and special events, and general travel advice.
Q: What about restaurant recommendations?
A: Food is such a personal thing that I'm wary of recommending the 'best' places to eat, but I'm happy to give you details for places that I enjoy eating at - all independent restaurants and cafes - and some less familiar local eateries that you may not otherwise find.
Q: What happens if we get bad weather?
A: In Scotland, they say there's no such thing as bad weather, just the wrong clothes! Rain, snow, thunder and lightning, or zombie apocalypse... all tours run as usual.
Q: Can you help us book our accommodation?
A: I generally suggest that you need to have your accommodation confirmed before planning your tour with me. Harper's Concierge have a great range of holiday apartments for let across the city, likewise Dickins, who also offer dog-friendly accommodation.
I'm also happy to recommend friendly and professional Airbnb providers Gillian, Irene and Patrick, or to stay in the heart of Old Town, check out the Old Town Chambers.
For self-catering just a short walk from the Royal Mile, Marchmont Self Catering have two properties available to let.
Q: How fit do I need to be to take a walking tour?
A: Because of Edinburgh's steps, hills and cobbles, it can be a challenging city to explore, so my tours are not generally suitable for people with below average levels of mobility. I usually suggest we'll cover a minimum of 1 mile of distance for each hour we walk, so longer tours cover greater distance.
Q: I'm only in Edinburgh for one day - is that enough?
Longer A: No, but... check out my suggested itinerary for a cramming as many of the iconic highlights of the city into a single marathon visit. (I don't actually suggest you attempt to plan any such day - broadly my advice is to do less in order to enjoy it more!)
© COPYRIGHT GARETH DAVIES 2014-20