25 Fun Things to Do in Edinburgh for Adults

Are you looking for fun things for adults to do in Edinburgh? If you enjoy spending the night out in the town without the sounds of screaming children echoing through the air, Edinburgh is the perfect place for you.

Whether you want to feel like a child again (without the presence of actual children) or listen to one of Edinburgh’s most gruesome ghost stories without it being watered down so it is family-friendly – there is an entertaining adult-only activity in Edinburgh for whatever you’re in the mood for.

Check out my list of 25 fun things to do in Edinburgh for adults to have the best child-free night of your life.

Edinburgh's skyline at night. A View of the Balmoral Hotel and Edinburgh Castle lit up. - Find fun things to do in Edinburgh for adults here.

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25 Fun Things to Do in Edinburgh for Adults

Updated 1 July 2024

1. Take an Adult-Only Ghost Tour

One of the best things to do in Edinburgh is take one of the many ghost tours the city offers. Most ghost tours are for all ages, but a handful has the darkest and most gruesome stories, which means the stories are too much for anyone under 18.

Two of my favourite ghost tours include the Night Walking Tour with Underground Vaults and the Underground Vaults & Graveyard Ghost Tour.

Check out the best ghost tours in Edinburgh for the complete list of the best ghost tours for adults.

Book here: Adults Only Edinburgh Night Walking Tour with Underground Vaults

Book here: Adults Only Edinburgh Underground Vaults & Graveyard Ghost Tour

2. Movie Night at Scotland’s Most Haunted Pub

Step inside The Banshee Labyrinth, Scotland’s most haunted pub, to watch a film inside the dark cinema deep within the vaulted rooms of the pub.

Films are shown weekly or monthly, offering several different genres, including B-list movies, zombie movies, alternative films and horror.

They have a complete list on their website if you want to request a film.

3. The Late Show @ The Comedy Attic

If you love comedy, I highly recommend spending a night out watching the hilarious The Late Show at the Comedy Attic. The show is hosted by Rick, the MC, who is funny enough as he chats between performances by some of the UK’s best comedians.

The venue is small, so it feels very intimate, but no one is safe from being abused by the comedians!

The Late Show @ The Comedy Attic is one of the best things to do in Edinburgh for young adults and couples. If you want an evening full of fun and laughter, definitely check out The Late Show.

The show is on Friday and Saturday nights and usually sells out, so I recommend booking a ticket for the night you want to go.

Book here: The Late Show @ The Comedy Attic

4. Go on a Pub Crawl in Edinburgh

Going on a pub crawl is one of the best things for adults in Edinburgh. Edinburgh has some of the most impressive historic and haunted pubs. You can explore the historic pubs or visit the best haunted pubs in Edinburgh alone, but I recommend booking a pub tour! There is no better way to experience them all than taking a pub crawl in Edinburgh.

Find out more here: Pub Crawls in Edinburgh.

5. Take a Barrel Ride at the Scotch Whisky Experience

Okay, Scotland is known for having the best whisky in the world. There are loads of whisky tours around Edinburgh (and Scotland), but they all pale compared to a tour at the Scotch Whisky Experience.

I was absolutely enamoured by the fact that the entrance into the whisky tour begins with a ride on a barrel. You become the whisky!

Anyway, the Scotch Whisky Experience also has the largest collection of whisky, which is on display in a stunningly gorgeous room. You will get to taste some of the nicest whisky you have ever had and keep the whisky glass as a souvenir.

If you are looking for a fun thing to do in Edinburgh for adults only, I recommend a trip to the Scotch Whisky Experience.

Book here: Scotch Whisky Experience

6. Enjoy a Boozy Brunch at Bar + Block Steakhouse Edinburgh

If you love brunch, head to the Bar + Block Steakhouse in Edinburgh to try their fantastic Boozy Brunch. This is one of the best things for adults to do in Edinburgh and is a perfect idea for a romantic date or late morning out with friends.

You can enjoy delicious prosecco, rockshore, or cocktails, which are available at an additional cost. If you would rather not drink, there are non-alcoholic drinks available. 

Why not head to the Bar + Block Steakhouse the next time you crave delicious food, incredible drinks, and a great time with friends? While this is a steakhouse, they have many plant-based options if you are a vegetarian.

Find out more here: Boozy Brunch

7. Enjoy Geeky Themed Cocktails

Head down to The Cocktail Geeks for delicious themed cocktails in a pub with a rotating theme. The experiences last four months; the next is a Super Mario Brothers theme. Enjoy drinks inspired by Mario and the Magic Kingdom until 9 June.

8. Watch a Classic Film at The Scotsman Picturehouse

Head down to the Scotsman Picturehouse for a night of classic masterpiece films to modern cult classics. The art deco style cinema holds a maximum of 48 people, offering an intimate film and entertainment style.

The Scotsman Picturehouse also offers alcoholic drinks to enjoy while watching a film. Where else can you nibble on retro-style sweets and have your choice of delicious cocktails?

Most films are intended for adults only. However, a few screenings allow children who are accompanied by adults.

So, while most film screenings are great for people looking for things to do in Edinburgh for adults, be sure to check that your film is geared only for adults before booking your ticket.

Check out what films are currently playing here: The Scotsman Picturehouse

9. Listen to live music at the Brewhemia

One of the best things for adults to do in Edinburgh is, hands down, to spend the night listening to live music at Brewhemia.

They have live music nights and stellar food, and the location has a great atmosphere.

10. Enjoy a Concert by Candlelight at St. Mary’s Episcopal Cathedral

Spend the evening surrounded by the flicker of candlelight dancing off the walls as you enjoy listening to live music performed by a local string quartet.

The concerts are all different themes, including shows like 100 Years of Warner Bros, where you will hear songs from Scooby Doo, The Exorcist, Batman, Harry Potter, and Casablanca (plus many more!)

Technically, this isn’t an adult-only event in Edinburgh, as children over 8 can go if accompanied by an adult. However, I have been to a few of these concerts and haven’t encountered anyone under 25 years old.

Book here: Candlelight Concert in Edinburgh

11. Play in an Adults-only Ball Pit

Spend the night jumping in the ball pit without accidentally punching a child in the face at Ballie Ballerson in Edinburgh. This adult-only ball pit is one of the most fun things to do in Edinburgh for adults.

Ballie Ballerson is more than just ball pits and delicious drinks – they also have boozy brunch day parties, cocktail trips and karaoke nights.

So, if you are looking for one of the best days out in Edinburgh for adults – why not spend it jumping into a ball pit?

Book in advance, as tickets to the ball pit go quickly.

Book here: Ballie Ballerson

12. Take a Potions Class at the Cauldron Magical Experience

Want to make potions like the witch or wizard you’ve always been? Take a potions class at the Cauldron Magical Experience. You will get to brew your own themed cocktail or mocktail. Plus, you get a welcoming drink you pour yourself, which is cooler than it sounds. The potions are magical as they are colour-changing, filled with dry ice, and much more.

Also, if you want to spend Halloween in Edinburgh, they always have special Halloween-themed potions for you to make during the spooky season.

Book here: Potions Class

13. Fun things to do in Edinburgh for Adults – Fayre Play

Step back into the world of nostalgia by visiting Fayre Play in Edinburgh. Fayre Play is the first fun fair game experience for adults only.

Some of the games include Skee-Baw, Slam Drunk, Duck Hunt (you better bring home a duck!), Cal-Tin Hill, Glass Market and every other game you remember from days out at the local fair.

If you are looking for fun things to do in Edinburgh for adults, I highly recommend a visit to Fayre Play. However, it is much more fun with larger groups of friends, so I don’t recommend it for solo nights out or with another friend.

Find more here: Fayre Play

14. Go Stargazing at the Royal Observatory

If you love stargazing and astronomy, you must spend an evening at the Royal Observatory. They offer tours where you can explore the stunningly beautiful Victorian telescope dome. And (depending on the weather), you will end the tour with a chance to stargaze on the roof.

15. Beer Tasting Session @ The Lost Close

Head deep into one of Edinburgh’s historic closes and enjoy some beer while listening to the history of beer brewing in Edinburgh. You will get to taste several different types of beers – everything from light to golden to darker beers. Plus, you will learn how to taste beer like a pro, which will definitely impress your friends.

This is an adult-only activity in Edinburgh, as it involves drinking beer. Take all your adult friends out on the town and learn about Edinburgh’s rich beer history.

Book here: Beer Tasting Session @ The Lost Close

16. Go to Edinburgh’s Underground with Mary King’s Close

Technically, Mary King’s Close doesn’t have any adult-only tours. However, I’ve been there at least 40 times, and no children were on my tours. So, while I can’t guarantee you will have an adult-only tour when visiting the historic close, chances are high that it will be you and several other adults.

Mary King’s Close is a portion of a close buried deep below Edinburgh after the plague hit Scotland. If you love dark history in Scotland, you will love visiting the underground city.

17. Whisky and Folklore in Edinburgh

If you love folklore and whisky, this tour is one of the best things to do in Edinburgh for adults. Visit the bespoke whisky lounge Hot Toddy and enjoy four single malt whiskies from different regions in Scotland.

During the tour, you will hear about the history of whisky and storytelling as you sip on tasty, sweet, citrussy and smoky alcohol. The storytelling is hilarious, fun, historic and all about Scottish Folklore. This is one of the best whisky tours in Edinburgh, too!

Book here: Whisky and Folklore in Edinburgh

18. Attend an Adult Only Event at the Botanics

If you are looking for fun things for adults to do in Edinburgh, head down to the Royal Botanic Garden. The Botanic Gardens run adult-only events throughout the year but only at specific times. I recommend watching their website for future adult-only events in Edinburgh.

More information: Adult-Only Events at the RBGE

Chris playing the Simpsons Arcade Game at NQ64
My friend Chris was shocked that they had our favourite retro Simpsons arcade game at NQ64

19. Play Arcade Games at NQ64 Edinburgh

If you want to spend the night playing nostalgic arcade games from your youth, head down to NQ64 on Lothian Road.

Walking into the quirky bar brought me back to nights spent playing games all night at the arcade in the 90s. What makes this even better? You can drink the best cocktails and craft beer in Edinburgh while playing your favourite retro games.

So, if you are looking for fun things to do in Edinburgh for adults that will take you back in time – head down to NQ64 and play the Simpsons arcade game all night long.

20. Adult-Only Bowling in Edinburgh

Head down to Rose Street for some Booze, Ball Games and Bowling at Roxy Lanes. This is one of the best things to do in Edinburgh for adults if you love bowling, billiards, batting cages, and much more.

Until 5 to 7 p.m., people under 18 are allowed with adult supervision. If you want a kid-free experience, head down later in the evening.

21. Enjoy Edinburgh’s Stand Up Comedians

Edinburgh has some of the best comedy clubs and is the perfect place to spend a child-free evening.

Several different comedy clubs host stand-up comedians nearly every night of the week. I recommend visiting Monkey Barrel Comedy, Just the Tonic at The Caves, The Comedy Attic, and the Stand Comedy Club.

22. Dance the Night Away at a Ceilidh at Ghillie Dhu

Experience Scottish food and a live ceilidh band at Gillie Dhu in Edinburgh. If you’ve ever wanted to enjoy a real ceilidh, I recommend the dinner and ceilidh at the Burly Ceilidh Club.

The Ceilidh is 18+ only, making it perfect for people looking for fun things for adults to do in Edinburgh.

The event takes place on various different dates. Be sure to check their website so you can attend the next ceilidh!

Find out more here: Burly Ceilidh Club – Dinner And Ceilidh

23. Take a Cocktail Masterclass at The Alchemist

Enjoy mixing up cocktails at The Alchemist in Edinburgh. With three different packages, it is the perfect way to spend a night in Edinburgh. You can choose lighter spirits, including a colour-changing drink you can drink when you first arrive. You can enjoy more mature cocktail flavours. There is even an alcohol-free package for people who want to enjoy making drinks without alcohol.

Find out more information here: The Alchemist 

24. Try Drinks from Around the World at Ruma

Head to Ruma in Edinburgh to try some delicious rum cocktails from around the globe. Not only does it feature drinks from places including Barbados and Fiji – but it also has loads of Scottish drinks to try. So, if you are interested in trying new rum cocktails and want to spend a night doing things for adults in Edinburgh, head to Ruma for a fun night.

25. Enjoy Rooftop Drinks in Edinburgh

You must get drinks (and food) at one of Edinburgh’s rooftop bars to see stunning city views. I recommend the Nor Loft, Chaophraya Thai Restaurant, Johnnie Walker Princes Street, Cask Smugglers, or The Lookout by Gardener’s Cottage.

Adults playing retro games at NQ64 in Edinburgh. This is one of the most fun things to do in Edinburgh for adults.
Spend the night at NQ64 on Lothian Road playing retro arcade games

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