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Exploring Edinburgh’s Natural Wonders with Kids

When it comes to family-friendly outdoor activities, Edinburgh has something for everyone. From stunning coastal views to rolling hills, the Scottish capital is home to some of the most beautiful natural wonders in the world. Whether you’re looking for a day out with the kids or a weekend of exploration, there’s no shortage of outdoor activities to enjoy. Here’s our guide to exploring Edinburgh’s natural wonders with kids.

Discover the Capital’s Coastal Views

Edinburgh is surrounded by stunning coastline, with plenty of spots to explore with the kids. Head to Portobello Beach, just east of the city, where you can enjoy a stroll along the sand and take in the spectacular views of the North Sea. The beach is also an ideal spot for a picnic, so make sure to pack some snacks and drinks for the family.

Head south of the city and you’ll find South Queensferry, a picturesque village located on the banks of the River Forth. Here you’ll find the iconic Forth Bridge, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, as well as plenty of other attractions to explore with the kids. Take a boat trip around the bay, or hop on a train and explore the villages and towns of the surrounding area.

Explore Edinburgh’s Historic Castles

No trip to Edinburgh is complete without a visit to its historic castles. Edinburgh Castle, located on Castle Rock in the heart of the city, is one of the country’s most iconic landmarks. Kids will love exploring the castle’s turrets, dungeons and secret passages. The castle also houses the world’s oldest crown jewels, the Honours of Scotland, so make sure to check these out too.

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If you’re looking for a quieter castle experience, head to Craigmillar Castle. Located just south of the city, this medieval fortress is home to a number of fascinating ruins, including a tower house and a great hall. Kids will love exploring the ruins and discovering the castle’s secrets.

Take a Hike Through the Pentland Hills

Edinburgh’s Pentland Hills offer a stunning backdrop for outdoor adventures with the kids. Take a hike through the hills and enjoy the breathtaking views of the city and the surrounding countryside. The hills are home to a number of challenging trails, so make sure to wear suitable footwear and bring plenty of snacks and drinks for the kids.

For those looking for a more leisurely walk, head to Harlaw Hill, located just north of the city. Here you’ll find a series of tranquil trails, as well as a number of scenic viewpoints. The hill is also home to a variety of wildlife, so keep your eyes peeled for some of the local animals.

Visit Edinburgh’s Wildlife Parks

Edinburgh is home to a number of wildlife parks and gardens, making it the perfect destination for nature-lovers. Edinburgh Zoo is one of the city’s most popular attractions, with a wide variety of animals to admire, including monkeys, penguins and tigers. The zoo also offers a range of family activities, such as feeding the giraffes and taking part in animal talks.

Head to the nearby Royal Botanic Garden and explore its range of exotic plants, trees and flowers. Kids will love the garden’s interactive exhibits, as well as the chance to spot some of the garden’s resident wildlife.

Explore Arthur’s Seat

Arthur’s Seat is the highest point in Edinburgh, offering stunning panoramic views of the city and beyond. Take a hike up the hill and admire the views of the city and the surrounding countryside. The summit is also home to a number of ancient ruins, making it the perfect spot for a picnic with the kids.

For those looking for a more challenging climb, head to Calton Hill. This rocky hill offers a range of trails to explore, as well as a range of historic monuments, including the National Monument and the Nelson Monument.

Take a Trip to the National Museum of Scotland

The National Museum of Scotland is one of the city’s most popular attractions, with a range of interactive exhibits to explore. Kids will love discovering the museum’s collection of natural history artefacts, as well as its collection of science and technology exhibits. There’s also a range of activities for the whole family, including interactive workshops and hands-on activities.

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Take a Boat Trip Along the Water of Leith

For a unique experience, take a boat trip along the Water of Leith. The river is home to a variety of wildlife, making it the perfect spot for a spot of wildlife-watching with the kids. Explore the riverside villages, take a stroll along the banks, or just sit back and take in the stunning views.

Go Geocaching in Holyrood Park

For an exciting outdoor activity, try geocaching in Edinburgh’s Holyrood Park. The park is home to a number of hidden caches, so make sure to bring a GPS and your sense of adventure. Kids will love the thrill of the hunt, as well as the chance to explore the park’s stunning scenery.

Visit the Royal Yacht Britannia

Take a trip to the Royal Yacht Britannia, one of Edinburgh’s most popular attractions. The yacht is a former royal residence, and kids will love exploring its royal suites and admiring its grand furnishings. There’s also a range of interactive exhibits and activities to keep them entertained.

Check Out the City’s Parks and Gardens

Edinburgh is home to a number of picturesque parks and gardens, making it the perfect destination for a day out with the kids. Princes Street Gardens is one of the city’s most popular parks, with a range of attractions to explore, including a maze, a playground and a lake. Kids will also love the chance to spot some of the park’s resident wildlife, such as ducks, swans and the occasional peacock.

Visit Edinburgh Castle Esplanade

Edinburgh Castle Esplanade is one of the city’s most iconic landmarks, and it’s the perfect spot for a day out with the kids. Take a stroll along the esplanade and admire the views of the castle, or take part in one of the many activities on offer, from archery to mini golf.

Explore the Royal Mile

Head to Edinburgh’s Royal Mile and explore the city’s cobbled streets and winding alleys. Kids will love discovering the city’s historic buildings, as well as its vibrant street performers and unique shops. The Royal Mile is also home to a number of fascinating museums and galleries, so make sure to take a detour and explore these too.

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Summary

Edinburgh is home to some of the most stunning natural wonders in the world. From stunning coastal views to historic castles, there’s plenty of outdoor activities to enjoy with the kids. Take a hike through the Pentland Hills, explore the city’s wildlife parks and gardens, or visit one of the city’s many attractions. Whether you’re looking for a day out with the kids or a weekend of exploration, Edinburgh’s natural wonders are sure to provide an unforgettable experience.