Happy almost Halloween my ghouls! I thought the last spooky location I should take y’all through should be really creepy, but also awesome. So, today I bring you Greyfriars Kirkyard in Edinburgh, Scotland!
When planning our trip to Scotland I did a lot of research on things to do/see. Edinburgh was a little bit harder than other places because we wanted to see a ton of stuff. It is an incredible historic city, and we wanted to hit the highlights! One place that we kept seeing over and over (for different reasons) was Greyfriars Kirkyard. So, we added it to the list!
Greyfriars Kirkyard, like many places in Edinburgh, is tucked behind some old buildings and you would absolutely miss it if you weren’t paying attention. The easiest way I suggest finding it, is to find Greyfriars Bobby’s Pub. First of all, the outside is adorable and you can see a statue of Bobby, the sky terrier who supposedly guarded his owners grave until his own death 14 years later. (You can find Bobby’s headstone right in the entrance of Greyfriars Kirkyard.) Once you find Greyfriars Bobby, look to your immediate left and go down the dark spooky alley and you will walk straight into Greyfriars Kirkyard.
This cemetery has been around since the 1560s. Yes, you read that correctly, 1560. Many Scots have been buried in Greyfriars throughout the ages, but one has been said to still be hanging around after his death. George Mackenzie was a persecutor of the Presbyterian church back in the 17th century, and his ghost is supposedly haunting the kirkyard to this day. The Mackenzie Poltergeist is said to be pretty aggressive because people have been scratched, bruised, and pushed often in the kirkyard at night.
It’s kind of incredible just to see all the old headstones and mausoleums. Even during the day it’s a little creepy. If you’re looking for a really creepy time, try going in the kirkyard at night! As far as I know, it stays open all the time, so you can go in anytime of the day or night! Jackson and I found the kirkyard for the first time at around 11pm and we wandered around in the dark for awhile. Not going to lie, you are going to want someone to hold onto.
Ok, where are all my Potterheads? I have something exciting to tell you! Did you know that J.K. Rowling wrote Harry Potter in Edinburgh (more on that in another post) and more specifically, found some of her character’s names in Greyfriars Cemetery?!? Buried in the cemetery is a man named Tom Riddle. There is also a Scottish poet with the last name McGonagall. I’m not going to tell you where they are because honestly finding them is half the fun! I will tell you they are closer to the back, but that’s it!
Greyfriars Kirkyard is an unbelievable place in one of the most beautifully magical cities in the world. If you are ever in Scotland, you must visit Greyfriars Kirkyard and Edinburgh. Say hello to Bobby for me and make sure to be on your guard!