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|Location||31 Market St, Edinburgh EH1 1DF|
|Public transit access||Edinburgh Waverley station|
The Edinburgh Dungeon is an underground tourist attraction in Edinburgh's city centre, on East Market Street, which uses live actor shows and interactive rides to show various historical events from Scottish history in a scary fun style, with audience interaction and special effects, theatrical sets and performance. The shows are laced with tongue in cheek, gallows humour typical of the Dungeon brand.
The Edinburgh Dungeon was founded in 2000 by Vardon Attractions (now Merlin Entertainments) founder and now CEO, Nick Varney. Based on the same principles as the London Dungeon, early characters included Vikings, William Wallace, Burke and Hare, and scenes from Edinburgh's famously plague-ridden 'closes' (alleyways).
From the early 1500s to late 2018, it has evolved to feature walkthrough theatrical shows, such as Witch Hunt (based on the witch trials of the mid-17th century, and the cannibal cave of Sawney Bean, based on the legend of the notorious cannibal family who resided in a cave in Galloway for decades.
The Edinburgh Dungeon features 11 shows, 15 actors and 2 rides. Visitors are taken on a journey through 500 years of Edinburgh's history where they meet actors performing as some of Edinburgh's most infamous characters, including Agnes Finnie, Burke & Hare, Sawney Bean and The Green Lady Elizabeth Elphinstone. The Dungeon's shows are staged on theatrical sets with special effects, including shaking floors, spinning walls, levitation gags and air jets. The show incorporates events such as The Plague, the witch trials, and includes characters such as 'The Torturer', 'The Foul Clenger' (Plague Cleaner), and 'The Judge'. Guests are encouraged to participate in all shows. The experience also includes a Drop Ride to Doom, which is a free-fall ride, staged as a public hanging.
In November 2016, the Edinburgh Dungeon underwent major construction in order to expand the offering and install new show areas. In a project worth over £500,000 they installed a steel structure that now houses their Witch Hunt show, which features Agnes Finnie and the Witch 'Pricker', charged with extracting her confession. The show also features many special effects, which, at the time of installation, was a world first combination.
The Edinburgh Dungeon is part of the Merlin Entertainments Group, and is one of eight Dungeons in Europe. The Amsterdam Dungeon, Berlin Dungeon, the Blackpool Tower Dungeon, The Castle Dungeon at Warwick Castle, Hamburg Dungeon, and the York Dungeon are also part of the Dungeon Group.