Experience Outdoors is an innovative service operated by The City of Edinburgh Council’s Sport and Outdoor Learning Unit. Experience Outdoors offer specialised provision for outdoor learning, including adventurous activities, technical advice and training, teaching and learning support, and advice about outdoor learning awards. Our highly skilled teams have the knowledge and expertise to provide high-quality awards and achievements.


We own three outdoor centres and deliver a wide range of Outdoor Learning provision and services.

Benmore Outdoor Centre in Benmore Botanic Gardens, near Dunoon, and Lagganlia Outdoor Centre in Glen Feshie, near Aviemore, are residential centres in unique locations within Scotland’s two National Parks. They provide outstanding opportunities for children, young people and others to experience inspirational Outdoor Learning in wild surroundings.

Bangholm Outdoor Learning Centre is a non-residential centre located in North Edinburgh. Bangholm staff focus on excursion approval, UK and overseas, specialist technical advice, achievement awards, Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, John Muir Award and Junior Award Scheme for Schools, Curriculum for Excellence advice and support, outdoor learning partnership working, delivering training and specialist courses, equipment loans and direct delivery to children, young people and others.

We deliver commercial activities, including self-catering, where any surplus is invested straight back into our core purpose. Explore our purpose.


Our specialist Outdoor Learning team has significant expertise, experience and qualifications across Outdoor Learning, allowing us to deliver an innovative and first-class service to our users and clients.

Our Outdoor Learning offers

  • Direct residential and day provision across a vast range of adventurous and educational activities; ranging from local environments to some of the most beautiful and remote parts of the UK
  • Teaching and learning advice, support and training
  • Specialist technical and safety advice
  • Organising and delivering specialist large-scale events
  • Maintaining and developing an off-site employer guidance policy framework
  • Specialist and general equipment hire
  • Bespoke commissioned services.

Our experiences include

  • Scottish and English curricula delivery at all ages
  • Youth work
  • Wider achievement, including the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award
  • Significant adventurous activity instruction and activity - supported by National Governing Body qualifications and wide-ranging experiences
  • Senior school leadership
  • School improvement provision
  • Designing, developing and delivering teacher training programmes - Primary and Secondary
  • Planning and delivering UK and overseas excursions
  • Designing and delivering training to various user groups
  • Organising large-scale conferences and educational delivery days
  • Liaising with Outdoor Learning stakeholders
  • Developing and delivering sustainable traded services
  • Approving and monitoring 1000s of excursions across the UK and overseas
  • Policy review and renewal, including off-site employer guidance and resources
  • Commercial operations
  • Championing Outdoor Learning within a range of political and strategic contexts.

Our staff and service are active members of the Scottish Advisory Panel for Outdoor Education, SAPOE, Scottish Association of Heads of Outdoor Education Centres, AHOEC, the Institute of Outdoor Learning and The Scottish Adventure Activities forum.

Recent clients include

  • The City of Edinburgh Council schools
  • The City of Edinburgh Council non-school groups
  • Local authority schools and groups from across Scotland
  • Independent schools
  • Academies from England
  • Third sector organisations
  • The British Broadcasting Corporation – Raven TV series
  • Specific-interest groups
  • Families and friends
  • Individuals requiring advice and support for specialist challenges.

Don’t just take our word for it, contact our centres to ask for the latest clients who have agreed to provide testimonials about provision and service.

Enjoy the Outdoors with Experience Outdoors.