Geoscience activities near Edinburgh

If you love your degree and want to learn while being in the city, then there are lots of activities for you! Summer may have started but it doesn’t mean that the geology stops!

Here is a list of some of the fun Geoscience activities that you can do while being in or near the city.

1.Walk up Arthurs Seat and Crags:

If you are interested in geology then you’ll be amazed by all of the geological history on our doorstep. With Arthurs Seat being an extinct volcano and Salisbury Crags being an ancient dolerite sill – there is so much to see and learn. The park hosts a range of geology with evidence of ash and lava flows. There is even an unconformity which has been found my James Hutton himself between the country rock and volcanics.  Not only is there interesting geology but there are also very pretty views over the city and easy walks making it a great place to spend your afternoon.


There is also a leaflet available in Dynamic Earth which will also help with this fieldtrip.60797452_526321657897818_6034093326171373568_n

2. Fossil Hunting in the Pentland Hills:

This region not only has more extinct volcanoes with a range of geology BUT is also home to lots of fossils. The areas of the Pentlands with fossils are accessible by a half an hour bus. There are many Silurian fossils to be found from brachiopods to bivalves a keen eye should be able to find them.


3. Wandering around the city looking at glacial features:

It is quickly clear that the city of Edinburgh is built on glaciated terrain. Even just walking about the centre you can spot different features from the Royal Mile being a Crag and Tail features or The Mound being moraine deposits.

Some clues on where to look:

4. The Botanical Gardens:

For all of those ecologists there is a massive botanical garden on the edge of the city that hosts plants from all around the world. The actual glass houses aren’t free but the grounds are and you could easily spend hours wandering around the area. The gardens are also in a really nice part of the city full of cafes and charity shops making it worth the trek to Stockbridge.

More information:

5. Fossil Hunting in Fife:

More fossils but everyone loves fossils. Not far from Edinburgh at the Fife coast there are many different regions with fossils to explore. Unlike the Pentlands you cannot take most of these fossils home but they are very impressive to look at. One of the places is Kinghorn which is accessible by train from Edinburgh with many Carboniferous fossils. If you are looking for closer fossils there is also Wardie Bay which is just down at Granton with lots of fossilised poo and fishes.

Information : – Barns Nest – Kinghorn


6. Exploring forests:

There are many  wildlife spots near the city from Holyrood Park to Craigmillar Castle Park. There are also other forests found just outside of the city which are home to a range of birds and different creatures.

These forests provide a nice escape from the city with walks, wildlife and cafes.


There must be lots more other activities that you can do related to geoscience subjects. If you have any more ideas then please comment below!

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