Haunted Edinburgh

October 31, 2016

I'm a huge lover of ghost, ghoulies and things that go bump in the night. Saying that, I'm a total woose so if anything is to make a noise when I'm alone in the flat then I will almost certainly be on the phone to my family, convinced I am about to die. But that strangely hasn't stopped me from tempting my luck - watching all sorts of scary films, and even visiting Edinburgh's haunted vaults.

Edinburgh has a looooong history of hauntings, and not all of these ghosts are the friendly kind. Edinburgh has a dark and gorey past, which has created all sorts of not so pleasant characters - you must have heard of Burke and Hare, the body snatchers? Edinburgh has some spots which are particular favourites of these spirits - liminal zones (as I found out on Thursday) run down the Royal Mile, along to the Salisbury Crags, making it easy for the ghosts to appear in our world too. The Underground Vaults are one of the areas where you're most likely to encounter someone... or something. 

If you've followed me for a while, then you'll have seen that I've taken a fair few trips down to said vaults, so when I was emailed by Colleen asking if I wanted to join a bloggers tour of the vaults, organised by Yelp Edinburgh and 8 Million Stories, I couldn't resist. 

We were a small bunch - only 11 in total - making everything a bit spookier. We joined Dave, our tour guide from Underground City of the Dead Tours and headed into the Southbridge vaults to hear some scary stories about those who reside in them. It was wonderfully creepy... Dave explained a bit about the history of Edinburgh before delving into the gruesome stories of deaths and ghostly encounters. He was brilliant - creating a spooky atmosphere (although he need not try considering how scary it is in the pitch black rooms) and so great at telling us stories that made us all nervous for the walk home. Unfortunately, or fortunately,  I didn't experience any strange goings on myself - I'm one of those strange people who actually wouldn't mind encountering one of them, but nonetheless the tour was incredible. Perfect for the run up to Halloween!

As I said, its not only the vaults that are haunted in Edinburgh, in fact there are many pubs where staff and guests have experienced some strange goings on. After our tour, we headed to one of these pubs - Whistle Binkies, Whistle Binkies is hauted by two ghosts - the Witch and the Imp, and while we had a drink to calm some of the nerves, we were told stories about how these two cause trouble playing with beer taps, locking people in rooms and moving things around. What was great about Whistle Binkies is that we were able to sit in one of the vaulted rooms - although its been done up to look and feel a lot nicer than in the actual vaults themselves, its still spooky to be in a haunted pub. 

Yelp Edinburgh have created an interactive map, with six haunted pubs on it - including Whistle Binkies. By clicking on each of the bars, you're given some information about the presence that resides there and some of the haunted stories. Fancying spending your Halloween in a haunted pub? Then have a look at the map here, and take your pick! You can even check in on the app too, to let everyone know you're in for a haunting.

Yelp Edinburgh is the perfect app to go to if you're looking for some of the 'low down' on Edinburgh. It's great for recommendations of places to eat and drink, from the locals themselves. Looking to take a trip to the capital? Then you should definitely be planning your trip with the help of Yelp. 

Which pub will be your first stop this Halloween?

Happy Halloween!

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