Best Walks in Pentlands Edinburgh Top 14 Routes

Best Walks in Pentlands Edinburgh – Top 14 Routes

Uncover the fantastic thing about the Pentlands, positioned simply exterior of Edinburgh, by these 14 distinctive walks. With beautiful landscapes and breathtaking views, this numerous vary of trails affords an unforgettable expertise for each seasoned hikers and informal walkers alike. From tranquil lochs and historical ruins to rolling hills and panoramic vistas, the Pentlands have one thing to supply everybody. So lace up your climbing boots and embark on an journey by this fascinating Scottish countryside.

Once I was staying in Edinburgh for a month, I beloved exploring the Pentland Hills Regional Park and discovering a few of the finest walks within the Pentlands that are simply exterior of town.

This hilly space is positioned to the south of Edinburgh and rapidly turned considered one of my favorite locations to discover.

What I really like most concerning the Pentlands is how accessible they’re from town centre, with quite a few public transport hyperlinks obtainable, together with bus routes and a close-by prepare station. This makes it simple to get out of town and into nature, even when you solely have a couple of hours to spare.

Throughout my time in Edinburgh, I took quite a few walks by the Pentland Hills, and I used to be continually amazed by the fantastic thing about the panorama.

The hills are coated in heather and supply beautiful panoramic views of Edinburgh and the encircling countryside.

The Pentland Hills are a preferred vacation spot for walkers, hikers, and path runners and supply every little thing from light strolls by woodland or round reservoirs to difficult hikes up steep inclines.

On this weblog put up, I’ll be sharing a few of the finest walks within the Pentland Hills, from simple routes appropriate for households with youngsters to tougher hikes for skilled walkers.

I’ll be offering particulars on a few of the finest Pentlands strolling routes, the highlights, and any tricks to benefit from your journey. So seize your strolling footwear and prepare to find the fantastic thing about the Pentland Hills!

OS Maps are superior for climbing within the UK. I’ve by no means discovered something fairly like them when in different international locations. They’ve all options like church buildings, rivers, peaks, viewpoints and extra. You will get paper maps (that are nice for locating new locations), and their app is tremendous helpful too.

Easy methods to get to the Pentlands close to Edinburgh

walks in the pentlands

Attending to the Pentland Hills from Edinburgh is comparatively simple, with a number of transport choices obtainable.

Driving to the Pentlands

You probably have entry to a automobile, you possibly can attain the Pentlands from Edinburgh by heading south on the A702 highway.

From town centre, it’s roughly a 30-minute drive to succeed in the Pentlands.

There are a number of automobile parks positioned all through the hills, together with Flotterstone, Harlaw, and Threipmuir.

Remember that parking might be restricted, particularly on weekends and holidays, so it’s finest to reach early to safe a spot.

I exploit comparability websites like DiscoverCars and RentalCars to e book my automobile leases because it’s simple to test costs and evaluate one of the best offers!

Buses from Edinburgh to the Pentlands

A number of bus routes go between Edinburgh and the Pentlands so you possibly can go for a stroll even with no automobile.

Edinburgh’s Lothian Buses 4, 15, and 44 from town centre go to numerous factors within the Pentland Hills.

The 4 and 44 routes terminate at Hillend, whereas the quantity 15 route runs from town centre to Penicuik, passing by the hills alongside the best way.

Bus timetables fluctuate, so it’s finest to test on-line for the newest schedules.

By Practice to the Pentlands

Should you want to journey by prepare, the closest station to the Pentland Hills is Wester Hailes.

You’ll be able to e book trains on-line upfront through the use of which makes it tremendous simple to plan your journey forward of time!

From right here, you possibly can catch the quantity 44 bus to succeed in Hillend, which is a well-liked place to begin for a lot of walks within the Pentlands.

Alternatively, you possibly can take the prepare to Penicuik, which is positioned on the sting of the hills, and discover the realm from there.

What to know earlier than climbing within the Pentlands

  • All the time observe go away no hint ethics and don’t go away any garbage behind. Persist with pre-existing paths in order to not erode the paths any additional than want be.
  • Pack loads of layers together with your waterproofs and your 10 necessities (see under)
  • All the time let somebody know the place you’re going and what time you’re anticipated again
  • The path maps and stats under are only a information on your inspiration. Do your personal further analysis into distances, issue and path closures.

What to pack for Pentlands hikes

walks in the pentlands
A really windy stroll within the Pentlands!

What to pack for this hike relies on what season you’re climbing in.

  • Take a look at my day hike packing record right here.
  • Should you’re climbing in summer time it’s best to pack sunscreen, sun shades, layers, water and bug spray in addition to every little thing within the 10 necessities for climbing record.
  • Right here is what to put on climbing in scorching climate
  • Take a look at this put up on one of the best leggings for climbing or what to put on climbing in summer time for extra particulars and my gear suggestions.
  • Should you’re climbing in winter after the snow has began falling you’ll want microspikes on the very least. If there may be plenty of snow you’ll most likely want snowshoes.
  • You must also take loads of layers together with a fleece layer, a puffy insulated jacket and a wind and waterproof outer layer. Hats and gloves are additionally vital in addition to a good backpack to maintain every little thing in.
  • You must also pack water and a few snacks too to maintain you going as they’re a part of the 10 necessities for climbing!
  • Planning a climbing date? Take a look at what to put on on a climbing date however nonetheless look cool.

Finest walks within the Pentlands

Beneath you’ll discover my choose of one of the best walks within the Pentlands. I’ve included a mixture of simple walks which can be nice for households and newbie walkers, in addition to some tougher hikes on a few of the highest peaks within the Pentlands.

Like climbing? Take a look at over 100 climbing guides I’ve written from hikes and walks all over the world!

Pentlands Hills maps

I exploit a mixture of each OS Maps and AllTrails to search out and map out my climbing trails and Pentlands Hills walks. I discover AllTrails is finest for inspiration, whereas. OSMaps is finest for mapping out the precise route you propose to take.

Should you’re searching for a Pentland Hills strolling map, you’ll discover path maps for every of those Pentland Hills walks linked under.

1. Harlaw Reservoir stroll

Threipmuir reservoir near Harlaw
Threipmuir Reservoir close to Harlaw

Harlow Reservoir is likely one of the best and prettiest of Pentland Hills strolling routes.

Accessed from the automobile park by the Harlaw Home Customer Centre, you possibly can take pleasure in a family-friendly stroll across the reservoir with views of the hills throughout you, seashore areas by the reservoir and a small woodland too.

From the customer centre proceed straight on and also you’ll quickly come to a wooded space which is able to take you across the southeast facet of the reservoir.

If you attain a steep grassy embankment you possibly can climb up this to a lookout level over Threipmuir reservoir. From right here, go proper to stroll alongside the sting of each reservoirs, earlier than taking one other proper over a small footbridge and strolling alongside the opposite facet of Harlaw Reservoir to the best way you got here initially.

  • Prime tip: End your stroll by visiting Carlyle’s Bar & Kitchen in Balerno for scrumptious cake and scorching sweets!

Path stats:

  • Distance: 3.5 km
  • Problem: Straightforward
  • Period: 1 hour
  • Elevation: 70 m
  • Trail map

2. Pentland 5 Peaks

scald law
From Scald Regulation

The Pentland 5 Peaks trail is likely one of the extra in style routes in Pentland Regional Hills Park however that’s as a result of it’s an incredible hike close to Edinburgh!

On this route, you’ll get wonderful views just about the entire time and see principally the entire park over the period of the stroll.

Beginning at 9 Mile Burn, you’ll stroll up over East Kip, West Kip, Carnethy Hill, Scald Regulation, and Turnhouse Hill.

There are some areas with steep climbs and descents however none depend as scrambles or are uncovered so it’s achievable when you’re somebody who’s into climbing.

  • Problem: Strenuous
  • Distance: 17.9 km
  • Elevation: 742 m
  • Period: 6-8 hours
  • Trail map

3. Allermuir Hill

Allermuir Hill begins close to the Snowsports Centre simply exterior of town on the northeastern a part of the Pentland Hills Regional Park.

From the small automobile park right here comply with indicators for ‘Capital View’ till you attain some steps.

On the steps, flip left and take a steep uphill path going diagonally throughout the slope.

Carry on this path till you attain a bench which is a good spot to absorb some wonderful views of Edinburgh.

Then, once you attain a gate within the fence, undergo it and proceed uphill.

Carry on strolling uphill till you attain a big cairn which marks Caerketton Hill. From right here you possibly can see a few of the bigger summits within the Pentlands and the views actually begin to get good.

You’ll go downhill a little bit bit earlier than your last ascent as much as Allermuir Hill marked by a trig level on the summit.

Benefit from the sweeping views then retrace your steps all the best way again to the automobile park.

  • Problem: Average
  • Distance: 5.9 km
  • Elevation: 440 m
  • Period: 3-4 hours
  • Trail map
walks in the pentlands

4. Capelaw Hill and Allermuir Hill

If you wish to stroll up Allermuir Hill however make it a bit longer, an incredible variation is so as to add Capelaw Hill and switch the stroll right into a loop path – which I all the time assume makes a hike extra fascinating.

Whereas you can begin the Allermuir and Capelaw Hill walk from the ski centre simply exterior of Edinburgh, including on Capelaw Hill means it makes a bit extra sense to start out from Bonaly.

From the parking zone on the far finish of the highway, you’ll head uphill barely by a brief part of forest earlier than popping out by the Bonaly Reservoir.

On the reservoir, proceed straight by some extra woodland after which flip barely left to go up the by the sector to the highest of Capelaw Hill.

Once I hiked up right here the climate was simply beginning to flip but it surely held out lengthy sufficient to stand up to Allermuir Hill which isn’t an excessive amount of additional away.

Nevertheless, getting there does require a slight descent from Capelaw Hill after which one other last, fairly steep climb as much as Allermuir Hill the place you possibly can take pleasure in some wonderful views again in direction of Edinburgh and the ocean.

  • Period: 2-4 hours
  • Distance 7.5 km
  • Elevation: 393 m
  • Problem: Average
  • Trail map
walks in the pentlands

5. Allermuir Hill and Castlelaw Hill

It is a nice Pentlands Walks Flotterstone path and will also be finished as one of many Pentland Hills walks from Swanston.

This model of the Allermuir Hill and Castlelaw Hill walk begins from the Flotterstone automobile park close to Glencorse and follows the paved monitor for about 1 km.

After you go a wooded space, maintain your eyes open for a path to your proper which fits uphill, take this and also you’ll stroll it for round 10-Quarter-hour till you come out in the back of a farm, a carpark and a capturing vary.

The capturing vary is immediately underneath Castlelaw Hill and strolling right here is mostly protected however do abide by any warning indicators, no entry indicators and ensure the pink flags, which point out troops are capturing, aren’t up.

From right here, comply with the signal to Castlelaw Hill across the farm and shortly you’ll come to an historical fort. It’s a fairly cool fort which you’ll have a look inside and I like to recommend you do!

From the fort, there’s a large path that goes uphill to Castlelaw Hill. It begins fairly steep however then ranges off a bit and there are quite a few paths you possibly can take to stand up to the highest of Castlelaw Hill itself.

The views from listed below are pretty restricted since some are fenced off as a part of the capturing vary, so that you doubtless received’t spend an excessive amount of time up right here, as an alternative persevering with on to Allermuir Hill.

Allermuir Hill has a few of the finest views of Edinburgh and it’s not notably steep or arduous to get to.

After having fun with the views at Allermuir Hill, take the trail downhill after which again up once more to Capelaw Hill which has a big plateau-type summit and a few fairly views.

From right here, stroll downhill once more right into a glen after which take the trail operating by the glen till you attain the paved monitor you began on. Then, simply comply with this again to your automobile.

  • Distance: 6.1 km
  • Problem: Average
  • Period: 2- 4 hours
  • Elevation: 268 m
  • Trail map
walks in the pentlands

6. Balerno to Glencorse

For an extended stroll within the Pentlands with some superior views, the stroll from Balerno to Glencorse is an effective choice.

There sometimes aren’t that many individuals on these trails when you’ve obtained a couple of km previous roads and automobile parks so it’s a pleasant strategy to get out and benefit from the peace and quiet within the Pentland Hills.

You’ll begin by Harlaw Reservoir, head previous Threipmuir Reservoir after which proceed on a well-marked path within the valley between Harbour Hill and Bell’s Hill till you attain Glencorse Reservoir.

It’s a fantastic space and will also be mixed with a walk-up Black Hill when you want to get some extra elevation in.

  • Problem: Average
  • Period: 2-4 hours
  • Elevation: 206 m
  • Distance: 9.7 km
  • Trail map
walks in the pentlands

7. North Esk Reservoir

The North Esk Valley route is likely one of the walks within the Pentlands that’s in style with birdwatchers since there are numerous birds residing across the reservoir.

This Pentland stroll takes round 2 hours and takes you on a round route by the North Esk Reservoir. It will probably get fairly muddy although so that you’ll need some wellies or good climbing boots.

There’s a small parking space at 9 Mile Burn and from there stroll up the remainder of the highway till you get to a path in your proper.

Take this path as you undergo Spittal Farm and up and over a hill. Proceed on the identical path till you attain a fork within the path at which level you are taking the left, heading downhill in direction of North Esk Reservoir.

There’s a small boat home right here with a picnic bench which makes an incredible level for a snack and a drink, or a extra drawn-out picnic when you’ve packed for that!

From right here, keep it up going downhill in direction of a home the place there’s an data board about all of the birds within the space.

Proceed clockwise across the reservoir the place you’ll come to Dulverton Disguise which is a small hut you possibly can disguise in to observe the birds after which head again alongside the trail to the place you parked up.

  • Problem: Average
  • Period: 2-4 hours
  • Elevation: 269 m
  • Distance: 5.9 km
  • Trail map

8. Harlaw Reservoir + Black Hill

walks in the pentlands
From Black Hill

I did this as a solo stroll and the views have been so fairly when you get to the highest of Black Hill, plus you get a pleasant simple part by Harlaw Reservoir.

Ranging from the customer centre at Harlaw Reservoir, selected a path to go across the reservoir till you get to Threipmuir Reservoir. From right here, flip left and hike alongside the sting of Threipmuir Reservoir till you attain a bridge going over the water.

From right here, flip left and comply with the trail because it goes across the nook and into the valley (this is similar route on the Balerno – Glencorse stroll).

Not lengthy after you not far away, search for a path to your proper that goes uphill and take this.

It turns into extra of a monitor at some factors and will get fairly muddy and boggy in locations but it surely’s not tremendous steep.

Comply with this all the best way till you come out to a plateaued space and also you’ve reached the highest of Black Hill.

To get again, retrace your steps and once you attain Harlaw Reservoir, you possibly can select to go the other method round it.

  • Problem: Average
  • Period: 3-4 hours
  • Elevation: 251 m
  • Distance: 11 km
  • Trail map

9. Bonaly Reservoir

walks in the pentlands
Bonaly Reservoir

The round stroll round Bonaly Reservoir is comparatively simple and appropriate for many talents, though some components of the trail might be uneven and muddy, particularly after rainfall.

Ranging from the automobile park at Bonaly Nation Park, the route follows a path across the reservoir, passing by woodland and open fields. The path is well-marked and affords implausible views of the Pentland Hills and town of Edinburgh within the distance.

Alongside the best way, you may see swans, geese, and geese.

This simple stroll within the Pentlands close to Edinburgh round Bonaly Reservoir is a good way to flee the hustle and bustle of town and benefit from the peace and tranquillity of the countryside. Whether or not you’re a seasoned walker or simply searching for a soothing stroll, this stroll is certainly value testing.

  • Problem: Average
  • Period: 1 – 2 hours
  • Elevation: 158 m
  • Distance: 2.5 km
  • Trail map
walks in the pentlands

10. Carnethy Hill

Carnethy Hill is likely one of the highest peaks within the Pentland Hills, positioned to the south of Edinburgh, Scotland. It’s a in style vacation spot for hillwalkers and affords beautiful panoramic views of the encircling countryside.

The ascent up Carnethy Hill is a difficult stroll that entails some steeper climbing sections and patches of rocky terrain.

The stroll begins on the automobile park at Flotterstons. From right here, follows the trail because it goes pretty steeply uphill to the jap facet of Carnethy Hill, passing by heather moorland and rocky outcrops.

As you ascend, you’ll be rewarded with implausible views of Edinburgh and the Firth of Forth. On clear days, you possibly can see so far as Bass Rock in North Berwick and the encircling hills.

When you attain the summit of Carnethy Hill, you’ll get even higher views of the encircling hills and countryside.

The summit is marked by a trig level, which is a well-liked spot for taking images and having fun with a well-deserved relaxation.

On your descent down Carnethy Hill, you possibly can both retrace your steps or comply with a unique route.

  • Problem: Average
  • Period: 2.5 – 3.5 hours
  • Elevation: 519 m
  • Distance: 6.5 km
  • Trail map
walks in the pentlands

11. Capital View Stroll

The Pentlands Capital View Walk is a good choice if you wish to take within the beautiful Edinburgh skyline.

Beginning at Hillend Nation Park, the stroll begins with a steep ascent up Hillend Hill however you possibly can take a relaxation on the bench on the prime of this part when you like.

From right here, both proceed up Caerketton Hill or take the trail alongside the ski slope’s prime.

As you make your method again down the hill, the stroll provides you wonderful 180-degree views of Edinburgh, stretching from the Bridges within the west close to South Queensferry, previous the Citadel and Arthur’s Seat, and all the best way out to North Berwick regulation within the far west.

When you attain the valley, the trail leads previous the lovable village of Swanston earlier than returning to Hillend’s dry ski slope.

Though there are some steeper components, they aren’t overly difficult or uncovered, making the stroll manageable for most individuals.

  • Problem: Straightforward-moderate
  • Size: 4.5 km
  • Elevation: 196 m
  • Period: 1-2 hours
  • Trail map

12. Scald Regulation

walks in the pentlands
walks in the pentlands

Scald Law is the very best peak within the Pentland Hills and is a well-liked stroll for these searching for extra of a difficult hike close to Edinburgh with implausible views.

There are some steep sections to the Scald Regulation stroll, however nothing uncovered or scrambly.

You can begin the Scald Regulation hike from a number of locations however once I hiked it we parked within the small village of Silverburn.

There’s a large path/highway that takes you in direction of the hills and by a few quarries. If you come to a fork within the path, head left and comply with the faint path by the grassy banks on the best way as much as South Black Hill.

From the highest of South Black Hill, head north, going downhill barely earlier than climbing once more up the western facet of Scald Regulation.

At this level throughout our hike it obtained tremendous windy making it arduous to stroll up the steeper sections to the summit of Scald Regulation but it surely all added to the enjoyable and thankfully, it wasn’t raining an excessive amount of!

On the summit of Scald Regulation (579 m), you get wonderful views of the encircling hills and the remainder of the Pentlands. There’s a trig level up right here and it’s an incredible place to have a snack earlier than making your descent.

We selected to go down a unique method, crossing the highest of Scald Regulation and coming down on the jap facet of it.

As you descend into the valley you’ll come to a crossroads, go proper and comply with the path till you attain the highway once more. The final part is on the pavement alongside the highway till you attain your automobile.

Or, comply with the path map under to take a route which avoids strolling alongside the highway.

  • Distance: 6 km
  • Elevation: 353 m
  • Period: 2-4 hours
  • Problem: Average
  • Trail map

13. West Kip, East Kip & Scald Regulation

walks in the pentlands
Scad Regulation hike

This half-day hike by the Pentland Hills takes you over three summits alongside the principle ridge: West Kip (551 meters), East Kip (534 meters), and Scald Law (the very best level within the Pentlands, at 579 meters).

To start this stunning hike by the Pentland Hills, head to the Threipmuir automobile park and comply with the tarmac highway that crosses the reservoir and heads uphill, flanked by timber.

Take a proper flip onto a monitor and proceed till reaching the left flip. After passing by, the monitor takes you throughout open moorland that may be a bit boggy.

On the foot of West Kip, take a left flip to start the steep, grassy climb.

Maintain placing one foot in entrance of the opposite till you attain the summit, the place you’ll be rewarded with glorious views throughout.

After the descent and a few sheltered spots for a snack, the trail leads you to East Kip, providing implausible panoramic views and is extra outstanding than Scald Regulation, which is the ultimate and highest summit within the Pentlands.

From the summit of Scald Regulation, descend on the opposite facet, becoming a member of a path that leads right down to The Howe.

Right here, go left flip and comply with the path, passing a small waterfall earlier than persevering with alongside the glen.

The trail finally leads you again to the tarmac highway and Threipmuir automobile park.

  • Distance: 16.5 km
  • Problem: Strenuous
  • Period: 5-6 hours
  • Elevation: 582 m
  • Trail map

14. The Pentlands Skyline

walks in the pentlands

Should you’re searching for a difficult hike close to Edinburgh within the Pentlands, try the Pentland Skyline walk, which entails finishing a full circuit of the 2 ridge strains.

Beginning on the Hillend Ski Centre automobile park, the Pentland Skyline route takes you up Caerketton, Allemuir, and Castlelaw Hill earlier than descending to Flotterstone.

From there, it’s up and over the 5 peaks within the Pentlands – Turnhouse Hill, Carnethy Hill, Scald Regulation, South Black Hill, and East and West Kip – earlier than descending again right down to the valley.

When you cross to the opposite facet, put together for a tough and boggy path over Hare Hill, Black Hill, Bell’s Hill, Harbour Hill, and Capemuir Hill, earlier than returning over Allemuir and again to Hillend.

  • Elevation: 2000 m climbing complete
  • Period: 10-12 hours
  • Distance: 33 km
  • Problem: Strenuous
  • Trail map: Please word. this can be a very tough trial map to indicate you the overall route, extra analysis will probably be wanted in your half.

Closing ideas on these finest walks in Pentlands Hills

walking in the pentlands

The Pentland Hills, positioned simply exterior of Edinburgh, supply light strolls by wooded glens to difficult hikes up steep inclines so there may be actually a stroll in within the Pentlands for everybody.

With a number of entry factors obtainable, together with by automobile, bus, and prepare, it’s simple to get out of town and discover this stunning space.

Throughout your walks within the Pentlands, you’ll get to take pleasure in beautiful panoramic views of Edinburgh and the countryside.

With a lot to discover, a Pentlands day journey is a good outside factor to do in Edinburgh for lively travellers.

FAQs about strolling within the Pentland Hills Edinburgh

What’s the finest hill within the Pentlands?

Many individuals think about Scald Regulation to be one of the best hill within the Pentlands attributable to its standing as the very best peak within the vary and the beautiful views from its summit.

The place do you park to stroll the Pentlands?

There are a number of parking choices obtainable for these seeking to stroll within the Pentland Hills. Some in style choices embrace Flotterstone Customer Centre, Harlaw Reservoir, and Threipmuir Reservoir Automobile Park. Nevertheless, parking might be restricted, so it’s finest to reach early, particularly on weekends and holidays.

What are the three peaks in Pentland?

The three tallest peaks within the Pentland Hills are Scald Regulation (579 m) (1,900 ft); Carnethy Hill (573 m) (1,880 ft); East Cairn Hill (567 m) (1,860 ft).

What are the 5 Peaks Problem Pentlands?

The 5 Peaks problem within the Pentlands entails climbing the 5 highest peaks within the vary: Scald Regulation, South Black Hill, East and West Kip, and Carnethy Hill. It’s a difficult hike that takes round 6-8 hours to finish.

This text highlights 14 of one of the best walks within the Pentlands Edinburgh. These walks supply a various vary of surroundings, together with beautiful viewpoints, rolling hills, and serene reservoirs. Every stroll varies in issue, offering choices for each informal strollers and skilled hikers. Whether or not one is searching for a leisurely stroll or a difficult journey, the Pentlands Edinburgh has one thing to supply for everybody.

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