You can download PDF versions of these leaflets for free from the links below, or by opening the interactive map on the right. The leaflets are handy to have for reference on your phone or tablet when you are visiting the sites. Where printed versions are available, you can order these within the UK for a nominal charge to cover postage.
City of Edinburgh
Edinburgh’s Local Geodiversity Sites
Around Castle Rock
Building Stones of Edinburgh’s South Side
Craiglockhart and Edinburgh’s Seven Hills
Cramond – Geological History
Stones of Scotland
Water of Leith
Water of Leith – Redhall
Water of Leith – Stockbridge
City of Edinburgh
Edinburgh’s Local Geodiversity SitesIn Edinburgh, 20 sites of local geological interest have been designated as Local Nature Conservation Sites by City of Edinburgh Council in partnership with Lothian and Borders GeoConservation and included in the City Local Development Plan.
Around Castle RockEdinburgh Castle Rock developed as part of a volcano hundreds of millions of years before human occupation. Today it provides a spectacular backdrop to the centre of the City of Edinburgh. This booklet describes the geological processes which created the landscape of the city centre and a selection of stone-constructed buildings and monuments which form part of the city’s built heritage.
Blackford HillBlackford Hill is one of Edinburgh’s Seven Hills. It is a Local Nature Reserve, the site of the Royal Observatory and a great vantage point. The geology walk described in this leaflet follows a circular route around Blackford Hill, through the Hermitage of Braid and to the summit of the hill, taking in important geological sites including Agassiz Rock.
Calton HillCalton Hill, central Edinburgh – A fragment of the Arthur’s Seat volcano, just beyond the east end of Princes Street. In addition to the extensive views around the city, the leaflet pinpoints interesting buildings and monuments in the surrounding area.
Cramond - Geological HistoryCramond village is located near the mouth of the River Almond in northwest Edinburgh. The village is well known for its rich history dating back to prehistoric times. Less well known is Cramond’s geological history which has shaped the landscape we see today. Written by Lisa Randall, as an outreach project while a student in the School of GeoSciences, University of Edinburgh.
James HuttonJames Hutton, a man ahead of his time. James Hutton’s life (1726-1797) spanned the period of the Scottish Enlightenment and he made a considerable contribution to our understanding of Earth processes and of the immensity of ‘deep time’. Explore sites in and around Edinburgh associated with Hutton and his legacy.
Joppa ShoreThe rocks at Joppa Shore, Edinburgh, were laid down as soft sediment 300-320 million years ago, and include sandstone, mudstone, coal and limestone. Written by Lindsay Wilson as a final year project of her geology degree at Edinburgh University.
Ravelston WoodsRavelston Woods, Edinburgh.
East Lothian & Scottish Borders
North Berwick Volcanoes
St Abbs HeadSt Abb’s Head is a National Nature Reserve managed by the National Trust for Scotland, with spectacular cliffs, a small loch and many nesting seabirds during the summer. The headland is formed mostly of volcanic rock, erupted about 400 million years ago.
West Lothian & Midlothian
Binny CraigBinny Craig, West Lothian – A prominent landmark, and an example of landform shaping , a legacy from the last Ice Age. This is a crag and tail landform with many surrounding features associated with glacial retreat. Published by West Lothian Council.
Bathgate HillsThe Bathgate Hills are rich in geological and cultural history, situated between the towns of Bathgate and Linlithgow. Over the millennia, the region has been home to many communities of people as far back as Neolithic times. Many of the nearby towns were once mining communities who exploited the opportunity provided by the area’s rich geological history. Published by West Lothian Council.
East Kirkton Quarry
A small, disused limestone quarry and a SSSI near Bathgate. Unusual in that the deposit favoured fossilisation of land animals rather than those that lived in water. Collecting not allowed without permission. Published by West Lothian Council.
Hopetoun Foreshore. This walk from Society Point to Abercorn Point explores two very different stories: the original formation of the rocks during the Carboniferous Period and changes that have happened during the current Quaternary Ice Age. Written by Tom FitzPatrick, as an outreach project while a student in the School of GeoSciences, University of Edinburgh. Published by West Lothian Council.
Esk ValleyThis leaflet introduces the story of coal and volcanoes, the varied rocks exposed along the River Esk and how the bedrock has been modified by ice and meltwater. Written by Nicola Coffin, as an outreach project while a student in the School of GeoSciences, University of Edinburgh.
See also Cycling around the geology and geomorphology of Midlothian prepared by Dr Mikaël Attal, School of GeoSciences, University of Edinburgh
Callander Geodiversity Trail
Callander Geodiversity Trail – Stories in the Landscape, produced by Callander’s Countryside, an associated organisation of Callander Community Development Trust.
Wolf’s Hole Quarry and Mine Woods, Bridge of Allan