The enabling legislation for Regional Parks is the Countryside (Scotland) Act 1967, section 48A. In it, Regional Parks are defined as:
large areas of countryside, parts of which are available for informal countryside recreation.
It should be noted that following the introduction of the Scottish Outdoor Access Code, most of the Regional Park is now available for recreation, as long as guidance from land managers is followed.
In a policy statement on the Regional Parks of Scotland by Scottish Natural Heritage, they state that the aims of Regional Parks should:
"all refer to the wider wish to facilitate both the appropriate understandings and enjoyment of the countryside and the integration of this with the other uses of the area, such as farming, forestry and other development, with the context of maintaining and enhancing a quality natural heritage setting. This type of approach is fully consistent with thinking about countryside management, as it has developed over the last 20 years. Regional Parks have indeed been to the fore in applying this more integrated approach in Scotland."
The Pentland Hills Regional Park was designated in 1986.