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Reviews (7,139)
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Traveler rating
5,084
1,359
356
188
152
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All reviews underground vaults ghost tour underground tour mercat cross ghosts ghouls south bridge royal mile edinburgh vaults above ground great tour story telling ghost walk a great story teller edinburgh's history highly recommend this tour old town visiting edinburgh
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Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Pales in comparison to other walking tours we've been on. We felt thorughly misled by the Mercat Tours synopsis on their webiste. Perhaps their historical tours citing facts and dates draw the tour to pay attention to the guide, and actually enjoy the experience more - but I attest that this "Ghost Tour" fell completely flat. The guide completely failed to draw the crowd into her dialogue, this tour needs someone who will put on more of a show with volume, emphasis and dramatic pause. A black cloak just aint cutting it.

Having been on a few walking tours before, we know pretty much what to expect. You know that a "Ghost Tour" with a minimum age of 5 years isn't going to be a spooky experience, you know to take the stories with a pinch of salt and no factual basis, you know that there won't be a great deal of historical accuracy at any point in the tour.
However, the Mercat Tours website advises that the experience in the subterranean bridge arches on Blair Street is a discomforting experience for anyone. This is over-egged tripe. Perhaps, on a different tour (eg one of the historical tours) you get to spend more than 20 minutes down there, shuffling in a gand from room to room, and the guide paints a picture that immerses you in the conditions that would've been endured by the people who had to live and work down there a couple of hundred years ago. Our guide failed on that score, she spoke in frustrating innuendoes to spare the audience words like: prostitutes, drunks, murdered, desecrated, blood... which meant the difficult to hear dialogue rambled on. With regard the "ghost stories" of the bridge arches, the tales were all to do with people who had allegedly previously been on Mercat Tours (funnily enough) and were all too far fetched to believe. I found this well disappointing as I've seen spooky documentaries about these arches on TV. I also intend to trawl through tourist reviews to see if there is any truth in the tale the guide told us about a person on a tour complaining of a lewd 'light show' in the Double Height Room where a man naked from the waist down was projected onto a boarded up doorway (Mercat Tours do not have special effects going on so this was an alleged spectral event).
The tales on the walking tour felt lifted from any folklore from any part of the country, so didn't enhance the experience that you were listening to things from Edinburgh.
Considering the lion's share of the ticket price is to schlepp around some cellars and disbelieve eveything the guide said (such as was the lack of conviction in the delivery) I reckon this is a massive rip off. You'd miss nothing by just loitering around the edge of a walking tour group - getting into the cellars/arches requires showing your ticket.
Perhaps if Mercat Tours marketed this as light entertainment, or a frivolous view on the subject matter I'd not feel so misled and cheated. I wouldn't recommend Mercat Tours to anyone.

Date of experience: September 2019
Thank IdleJess
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MercatToursLtd, Manager at Mercat Tours, responded to this reviewResponded 3 weeks ago

Hello There,

After reading your review you clearly did not enjoy your experience with us, which is of course disappointing. The beauty of tripadvisor is that it is a platform for many tastes and we fully understand that we cannot please everyone all of the time. Having said that we would never want any of our visitors to feel 'misled or cheated' and this is something that you state in your review.
I would like to assure you that all our tours are thoroughly researched and the information regarding the Blair Street Underground vaults have come from the research by qualified historians and archaeologists over many, many years. Information is based on the uncovered artefacts found within the site and from historical records. We do share anecdotal information gathered from visitors, and this came about directly from customer feedback. Customers wanted to know what other visitors had seen and heard over the years. We have not made up the information, we are simply retelling what our visitors have told us!
I am very surprised to read that you spent 20 minutes in the underground, all ghost tours should spend 30 minutes within the underground, I will certainly look into those timings.

I would very much like to speak with you person, if you would be happy with this please contact me directly, Shirley@mercattours.com


Until then


Shirley

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 3 weeks ago via mobile

This was a really good tour, made perfect by the absolutely hilarious Hannah. Her timing was perfect and the balance between spooky, funny and informative was just right!

1  Thank James H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MercatToursLtd, Manager at Mercat Tours, responded to this reviewResponded 3 weeks ago

Hi James

So glad you enjoyed your tour with Hannah and thank you for leaving a review.

All the best

Shirley

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Reviewed 3 weeks ago

This was a good tour very informative.We started from the old town and made our to the underground vaults with a few stories along the way. The underground vaults were very interesting and the guide was great and telling the history. What i still cannot believe and this also happen at another underground tour I was on that people left because they did not realise it was underground, still shaking my head do people not read what the tours they book are about.

Date of experience: August 2019
Thank Katrina F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MercatToursLtd, Manager at Mercat Tours, responded to this reviewResponded 3 weeks ago

Hello Katrina

I am delighted you enjoyed the underground and all the history that goes with it! You have left me smiling with our last sentence :)

All the best

Shirley

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Reviewed 3 weeks ago via mobile

Loved every minute of it !! Alun was a well informed talented guide

Had a spooky experience with someone tugging the back of my leggings

All in all x 10 out of 10

Thank slowery21
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Nicole (Nicki) did a great job with our tour. She kept a good pace, even though it was a challenge with some people lagging behind on the city streets. She was knowledgeable, and enthusiastic. I would do another tour with her leading.

Date of experience: September 2019
Thank Will J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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