Discover Adventure with the Borders Railway

Adventure is easy to find along the route of the Borders Railway - starting with the walks on Arthur’s Seat in the heart of Edinburgh, then further out via the year-round ski-slopes on the edge of the city. The Pentland Hills are the back-drop to other leisure and adventure options - and also the introduction to the classic landscapes of Midlothian and the Scottish Borders. Hill-slopes mean mountain biking, woodlands are for laser combat, the lovely river valleys of the Scottish Borders are for angling, while the quiet roads and hill-tracks attract cyclists - in short there’s plenty of choice within easy reach of the railheads. 

Adventure travel trade itinerary 

Day 1

In the morning, orientate your adventure clients with a brisk walk up Arthur’s Seat. The afternoon could be spent exploring the Water of Leith - downstream on foot or upstream by bike. (Other options here could be to book a session at the Edinburgh International Climbing Arena for some of the group, while the rest cycle along the canal path and meet at the centre.) Overnight Edinburgh

Day 2

Explore the Pentland Hills either walking in Regional Park or taking advantage of the facilities at Midlothian Snowsports Centre. Afterwards take the Borders Railway south. Overnight Galashiels or Tweedbank area.

Day 3

While cycle clients can be taken to 7Stanes Glentress or Innerleithen, the nearby River Tweed makes for a great angling day. Overnight Galashiels or Tweedbank area.

Day 4

Return by rail to challenge yourself with a fun day of laser combat at Edinburgh Combat Challenge within easy reach of Eskbank Station.

Adventure Listings

Arthur’s Seat.

At 250.5 m (822 ft) Edinburgh’s own mini-mountain easily gives the very best views of the city. An any-time short excursion suggestion for your clients, but especially rewarding on a summer evening for a walk or run. Popularity of the route means some polished rock underfoot - so care advised.

Further information More serious scramblers can be directed to the Holyrood Park climbing guide.

Distance from station: 0.8 mile / 1.3km (15 mins) walk via Royal Mile from Edinburgh Waverley

Suitable for G & FIT

Water of Leith Walkway:

A very flexible walking (or cycling) option for clients, can be tailored to suit time available. Full of historic interest, the Water of Leith walkway runs from Balerno in the western suburbs to Edinburgh’s ancient port of Leith. Historic railway track bed and tunnels add interest for cyclists and walkers on the western portion, while areas close to the city centre run past areas such as the picturesque Dean Village and Stockbridge with access to the nearby Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art

Further information Water of Leith Visitor Centre, Water of Leith: Balerno to Slateford

Distance from station: 1 mile / 1.6km (20 mins) walk to nearest access point – in the attractive suburb of Stockbridge.

Suitable for G & FIT

Edinburgh International Climbing Arena:

The world’s largest indoor climbing wall is just one statistic from this unique venue constructed from a former quarry. More than 11,000 bolt-on holds form 300+ different climbing routes, an aerial assault course and lots more; this hi-tech family-friend adventure centre is unique and offers an all-weather adventure alternative to fit clients of practically any age. The EICA also makes a great venue for a team-building challenge.

Further Information Edinburgh International Climbing Arena

Distance from station: 11.5 miles / 18 km from Edinburgh Waverley.

Suitable for G & FIT

Pentland Hills Regional Park:

The rolling uplands of the Pentland Hills are Edinburgh’s southern backdrop, easily accessible and providing a range of adventure and recreational opportunities. Riding and trekking, mountain biking and walking are the main leisure activities in the Pentlands. The Regional Park - the portion closest to Edinburgh - was designated in 1986 and covers an area of 90 sq. km / 35 sq miles.

Further Information Pentland Hills Regional Park

Distance from stations:  6.6 miles / 11 km from Eskbank, 6.3 miles / 10 km from Edinburgh Waverley.

Suitable for G & FIT

Midlothian Snowsports Centre Hillend:

The longest artificial ski slope in Europe situated on the north facing slope of the Pentland Hills, overlooking the city of Edinburgh. This long-established and well-resourced facility offers chairlift access to the Pentland Hills, as well as skiing, snowboarding, tubing. Fully qualified instructors are available to look after your clients.

Further information Midlothian Snowsports Centre

Distance from stations:  6.6 miles / 11 km from Eskbank, 6.3 miles / 10 km from Edinburgh Waverley.

Suitable for G & FIT

Edinburgh Combat Challenge:

This is the place to thrill your clients with a laser combat game using state of the art authentic infra-red weapons. They can experience being part of a real life computer game set in natural Midlothian woodland. It’s completely safe and a great fun day out for families or groups.

Further information Edinburgh Combat Challenge

Distance from station: Eskbank 1.7 miles / 2.7 km

Suitable for G & FIT

Tweed Valley Mountain Biking and Go Ape:

In recent years, this part of the Tweed Valley has developed a reputation for offering the best mountain biking in the UK. It is award-winning, well-resourced and very popular - with ‘on-the-ground’ cycling expertise to ensure a great day out for clients. The variety of rides, trails and challenges at Glentress will satisfy the most demanding rider. Tuition is available - plus a helpful state-of-the-art visitor centre. Go Ape nearby further widens the choice here – this is a truly adventurous way to enjoy the forest, with spectacular zip slides, rope bridges, Tarzan swings - all high above the forest floor. Forest segway tours offer clients a more down-to-earth experience.

Distance from station: 17 miles / 27 km from Galashiels.

Further information

7Stanes Mountain Biking: Glentress & Innerleithen


Visit Tweed Valley

Suitable for G & FIT

River Tweed Angling:

Internationally renowned for the quality of its salmon angling, the River Tweed will certainly have cachet with your clients. There is a huge range of fishing available throughout the salmon season (1st February to 30th November)  - and it is worth noting that, though salmon fishing is so closely associated with the river, the Tweed system also offers good brown trout and sea trout sport.

Distance from station: Tweedbank Station gives access to the river within minutes by road - actual distance depends on river beat booked.

Further information:

Fish Tweed

Tweed Fishing Instructor

Suitable for G & FIT