The hills themselves are largely open space. Housing in the area is mostly confined to detached villas, and some large terraced houses. The Braid Hills Hotel sits above Pentland Terrace and Comiston Road, overlooking the park across the road.
The area is well known for its golf course and its views of the city, and is a popular destination for families taking children sledging in the winter. There is also a riding stables and school, eastwards towards Liberton, which arranges pony trekking.