Trip Planner:   Europe  /  UK  /  Scotland  /  Edinburgh  /  Historic Sites  /  Gilmerton Cove
Gilmerton Cove, Edinburgh
(4.6/5 based on 550+ reviews on the web)
No one knows exactly what prompted the creation of Gilmerton Cove, a labyrinth of hand-carved passages and chambers operating as a secret city underneath the streets of Gilmerton. Possibilities for this soapstone structure, known locally as the Cove, include a clandestine drinking den, a smugglers’ lair, and a refuge for the persecuted. Audio tours and visual exhibits explain evidence for each theory, but much of the fun is wondering how it all came together and why. Some passageways are dark; bring a flashlight if you can. Wearing stable shoes to grip the smooth surface is a must. Tours must be booked in advance. Our Edinburgh travel itinerary planner makes visiting Gilmerton Cove and other Edinburgh attractions simple, and helps you make a travel plan personal to you.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • Impressive visit, spectacular and mysterious at the same time. The history of Scotland from its bowels narrated by Margarette is one of the best experiences that you can choose near Edinburgh.
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  • We really enjoyed our visit on the 28th November,our guide was very knowledgeable about the history of the cove and she made our imaginations flow.It was hard to believe that so much history was benea...  more »
  • Had never heard of this place, but my wife found it while searching for something a bit different to do while staying in Edinburgh. Our guide was enthusiastic and had various theories about what went ...  more »
Google
  • Fascinating tour. Great host, clearly passionate about Gilmerton Cove and its past. Don't be put off by its out-of-town location; it's easy to get to by regular buses from Princes Street or North Bridge and well worth the visit.
  • Really interesting hole in the ground. Hopefully they will get the funds to survey the surrounding grounds and hopefully see where the tunnels go. Great guide! Edit: They do have a bathroom! I was there 2016-06-19, and used it! And as someone else said, bring a flashlight.
  • Really interesting and strange underground cove. Best to book ahead for a very entertaining guided tour by a charming local lady
  • Very interesting, guide was excellent. If only we knew what they were dug out for... Lots of theories, but noone knows for sure. Worth a visit.
  • A few miles out of Edinburgh. A very interesting afternoon learning about the history about the caves.