Harry Potter Walk in Edinburgh / Edinburgh Castle
Harry Potter Walk in Edinburgh
Harry Potter Walk in Edinburgh / Graveyard Duel
Harry Potter Walk in Edinburgh / Graveyard Duel

Harry Potter Walk in Edinburgh

Discover the city where the magic began with the Harry Potter Walk in Edinburgh. See the places that inspired an icon, as you stroll through the streets of this amazing city!

Before JK Rowling was a world-renowned author, she was just a struggling writer, dreaming up a magical world from her Edinburgh home. It was the sites and characteristics of the city that helped her create that world, and its influence is on show for all to see.

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Harry Potter Walk in Edinburgh (01)
Harry Potter Walk in Edinburgh

On the Harry Potter Walk in Edinburgh tour, your guide will take you through all of the sites that were important and instrumental in Rowling’s writing process. And, to keep you on your toes, they’ll also regularly quiz you with fun Harry Potter trivia questions!

You’ll get to see where it all began: Spoon Café, formerly called Nicholson’s Café, and run by Rowling’s brother-in-law. It was here in the big window seat that Rowling wrote the earliest Harry Potter chapters. Helped, at least in part, by endless cups of free coffee. Little did anybody know what this friendly gesture would lead to.

You’ll also visit The Elephant House Café. This again was a favourite writing spot of Rowling’s. Looking out the window you get an amazing view of Edinburgh, and some of the historic sites that influenced the story.

These influences include Victoria Street and Candlemaker Row. These hilly, cobbled streets gave Rowling the inspiration for Diagon Alley. From the Elephant House window you can also see George Heriot’s School. This looming, castle-like building helped Rowling to come up with the idea for another castle-like school: Hogwarts!

Harry Potter Walk in Edinburgh / Graveyard Duel
Harry Potter Walk in Edinburgh / Graveyard Duel

From Elephant House you will go to Greyfriar’s Kirkyard. This 16th century churchyard played a pivotal role in creating characters for the Harry Potter books. Rowling used to walk through this churchyard, reading the names on the gravestones for inspiration.

While you stroll between the grave markers, make sure to keep an eye out for Tom Ridell (who in the books became Tom Riddle, otherwise known as Lord Voldemort). You may also stumble upon a William McGonagall, whose name was used to create Professor McGonagall.

Lastly, make sure to see where it all ended. It was in Edinburgh’s Balmoral Hotel that Rowling locked herself away to finish the last pages of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows in 2007. She marked the occasion by scribbling a message on one of the busts decorating her room. The room in question is now officially named The Rowling Suite, and costs £1000 a night!

Edinburgh is the birthplace of Harry Potter and a must-see city for any Potter fan. The Harry Potter Walk in Edinburgh tour is the perfect way to explore its streets and learn how it all began!

Tour details

  • Meeting Point

    Outside the Museum on the Mound
    The Mound, Edinburgh EH1 1YZ

  • Tour departs

    Wednesdays at 12:00hrs
    Saturdays at 12:00hrs & 14:30hrs
    Sundays at 12:00hrs

  • Duration (approx)

  • Live guide speaks

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