Edinburgh with Kids Blackford Pond

{Edinburgh} Blackford Pond with Kids

We feel blessed to live in a city that is not only beautiful and steeped in history, but is also surrounded by lots of nature. It means my city kids get a bit of the best of both worlds. I have written before about the Hermitage of Braid and Blackford Hill Nature Reserve, which is within half an hour on foot from our house, and somewhere we visit often. But I don’t think I have mentioned Blackford Pond before, which is part of the nature reserve area.  It’s not your average garden pond, but actually quite big and inhabited by a variety of bird including lots of ducks and a family of swans, so we always take a tub of bird seed with us to feed them which the boys never seem to tire of (we regularly buy big bags of custom bird seed specifically for trips to the pond, as it’s the best food for the birds).

We last visited Blackford Pond for our New Year’s Day walk, and we made a little video to show you how lovely it is there:

The area around Blackford Pond is fenced in, and the gates actually have birds set in to them – another fun thing for kids to spot!

Blackford Pond Gate

There’s also a small play area for younger kids, which includes a small climbing net and swing, a wobble board, and a noughts & crosses game. And a covered gazebo provides shelter for picnics or from sudden rain showers.

Blackford Pond Play Area
Blackford Pond Play Area
Blackford Pond Play Area
Blackford Pond Play Area

Blackford Pond is a great place to visit with kids in the South of Edinburgh, and is more accessible if you have very young kids or a pushchair, than some of the other more hilly terrain in the nature reserve. Don’t forget to bring some bird food! 

Playground Stats

Name: Blackford Pond Play Area
Location: Hermitage of Braid and Blackford Hill Nature Reserve, Edinburgh
Map coordinates: 55.92573, -3.1941
Best for: Toddlers
Ground cover: Wood chip
Rating: Thumbs up

Play Equipment

  • Swing
  • Climbing net
  • Spring board
  • Noughts & crosses game


  • Benches
  • Shelter
  • Pond with wildlife 

How to Get Here:

Blackford Pond is situated in the South of Edinburgh, and is part of the Hermitage of Braid and Blackford Hill Nature Reserve. It can be accessed via road on the north side of the pond, and via the nature reserve itself on the south side of the pond. The main entrance is at the junction of Cluny Gardens/ Charterhall Road/ Oswald Road (turn right after passing through the gates), but you can also access via Midmar Drive or via a small path that leads off Cluny Gardens next to the tennis club.

The No.38 bus passes Blackford Pond. The closest stops to the main entrance are either Blackford Pond or Oswald Road, depending which direction you are coming from.

[Post edited April 2021 to add photos]

Comments: 5

  • reply
    7 January 2021

    That looks so peaceful. The swans at our local duck pond are savage. They chase you for the food! The poor ducks don’t get a look in!

  • reply
    8 January 2021

    There is something about feeding the ducks/swans that resonates with everyone. Such an important part of childhood.

  • reply
    8 January 2021

    Aw we love feeding the birds and this looks like the perfect spot to do so! Such a nice nature spot to appreciate during these times.

  • reply
    11 January 2021

    We fell in love with Edinburgh when we visited a few years ago. Blackford Pond looks like a lovely place to visit with kids

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