If you like to be spooked on your holidays, then you’ve come to the right place. Below the streets of Edinburgh’s gothic Old Town you will find The Edinburgh Vaults. The Vaults are a a series of chambers formed in the nineteen arches of the South Bridge.
The Vaults are shrouded in mystery, horror and gore. Read on to see how you can ‘enjoy’ The Vaults when you come to visit us in Edinburgh.
Completed in 1788, the Vaults were used as taverns, and business premises for Edinburgh’s fine tradesmen. However it soon became apparent that the damp, poor air quality and filth of The Vaults were not suited to successful commerce.
The Vaults then became the home of the poor, diseased and disturbed of Edinburgh.
The Vaults are where the bodies of people killed by serial killers Burke and Hare were stored before being sold to the medical department of the University for experimentation. ‘Ladies of the night’ used The Vaults as their place of work, and The Vaults were used as stores for illict wares.
Things became so bad that even the very poor refused to live here and by the early 19th Century the Vaults had become abandoned, sealed off with rubble and quickly forgotten about.
Only recently (1985) during an excavation, when old toys, medicine bottles, and plates were found were the previous horrors of The Vaults rediscovered by the people of Edinburgh.
Today The Vaults are a major tourist attraction with informative and entertaining tours being held day and night. To enjoy The Vaults head to the Mercat Tours website. Mercat Tours is the only tour company with access to the original Vaults. The varied spaces available in the Vaults make them ideal for banquets, exhibitions and parties.
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