- Type: Offbeat Activities
NileGuide Expert tip:
WARNING: The Mackenzie Poltergeist can cause genuine physical and mental distress. You join the tour at your own risk.
- The City of the Dead tour - approximately 1.5 hours long - is a walking tour that explores the gruesome past of Edinburgh's Old Town. The tour's most frightening stop is at Greyfriars Kirkyard, the site of the infamous Mackenzie Poltergeist.
George Mackenzie was a Scottish lawyer from the 17th century, who brutally murdered approximately 18,000 covenanters - individuals who revolted against the English monarchy's interference in the Church of Scotland. When he died, Mackenzie was buried in a black mausoleum in Greyfriars Kirkyard.
In 1998, a homeless man broke into Mackenzie's tomb to find shelter during a storm and supposedly disturbed the malicious lawyers' remains. Since the incident, violent paranormal activity is said to have occurred in the graveyard and visitors have reported being bruised, scratched, cut and even knocked out by some unseen force either near Mackenzie's mausoleum or in the Covenanters Prison, an area of the kirkyard where Mackenzie is said to have tortured and killed his victims.
Tourists can try their luck with the poltergeist on a nighttime ghost tour of the kirkyard. It meets in front of St. Giles Cathedral on Royal Mile at 8:30pm and 10:00pm from Easter to Halloween, and at 8:30pm from Halloween to Easter. The tour costs £9.50 or £7.50 concession.
WARNING: The Mackenzie Poltergeist can cause genuine physical and mental distress. Join the tour at your own risk. Visit the City of the Dead website to read accounts of actual/alleged attacks by the poltergeist.
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