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Aberdeen in the sunlight is absolutely striking. During its expansion era between the 18th-20th centuries, many of the buildings incorporated local gray granite as part of their structure.
The local stone has a high mica content in it, which makes the city sparkle when rays of light hit the structures. The city is also a 10x winner of the Britain in Bloom contest. Here is a taste of what else to expect during your visit.
Take A Tour Of The Aberdeen Maritime Museum
You’ll find this museum down on Shiprow. It tells the tales of days gone by in regards to the shipping industry links that Aberdeen has always had. You’ll also find technology exhibits that show oil and gas exploration efforts that have originated in the city. Although much of the original Shiprow has been neglected over the years, it’s still a nice walk to take as well.
Enjoy An Evening On Belmont Street
Live music can often be found here in Aberdeen, making it a central hub of life in the city. You’ll find that most of the establishments on Belmont will be packed to catch local and international concerts, so consider arriving early to get a good vantage point. Some big names have played here in the past, including Annie Lennox.
Stand In Line At The Bakery
If you’ve never had an Aberdeen buttery, then a stay in the city demands you have one at least once. You can find them at grocers, but go to a baker for the best experience. Imagine a croissant crossed with a pancake that had batter mixed together with salted butter. It’s heavy, sweet, and perfect with some jam. Eat them hot or cold.
Aberdeen offers visitors a fun time no matter what season it may be. From the annual festivals to its championship sports teams, there is something that caters to everyone here. You’ll find yourself with a sparkle in your eye because of the joy – a sparkle the city will happily reflect.
Join The Party
The city’s most popular festivals and events include Aberdeen International Youth Festival, with around 1000 young people from the world’s finest youth orchestras, bands, dance and theatre groups coming together; Aberdeen Jazz Festival; Aberdour Festival, music, dance and creativity from around the world including bellydancing, henna painting, tabla drumming etc; Aberdeen Highland Games, competitions showcasing the skills of sportspeople, dancers and musicians from all over Scotland; Devron Festival, celebrating years of musical fireworks; and the Spirit of Speyside Whiskey Festival.
Our recommendations for the most interesting and some of the best sights in Aberdeen
The Marischal College and Museum
is one of the top destinations in Aberdeen. This place is founded way back in the year of 1593. This is built with the leadership of 5th Earl Marischal which has been merged with King’s College, which is founded in 1495, in the year of 1860 in order to produce University of Aberdeen which is considered to be modern back then. It has a huge and amazing façade that is structured to possess a Perpendicular Gothic Style. This historical trademark of Aberdeen is also recognized to be the world’s second structure made from granite.
The Aberdeen Art Gallery
Has all the art concepts that will surely make you amaze. You can see here the works of famous European and British artists and painters. There is a great chance for you also to be amaze about the presence of popular and extremely recognized landscapes around the globe. You can also feel fascinated since there are artworks and paintings here that are made from natural oil. Concepts that cover slum children also exist in this huge Aberdeen Art Gallery. Religious works are also presented at the upper floor of this art gallery establishment.
Is a popular place when summer time comes. This has seashore that is maintained in terms of cleanliness and well-organized structures and facilities. It is also proven that has sands that exist in this beach is near-to-gold color which is relaxing and truly beneficial when tourists want to unwind and experience refreshing sea surroundings.
Scottish Dolphin Centre
in the beautiful Spey Bay on the Moray Firth. This is a must-visit destination for everyone heading to Scotland. Experience the land-based dolphin watching, free tours and interactive visitors centre, and you may even spot some of the world’s largest bottle-nosed dolphins. Find out more about dolphin watching here.
Satrosphere Science Centre
Is Scotland’s first science and discovery centre. The interactive, hands-on exhibits and live science shows appeal to visitors of all ages who are interested in everything science and technology.
Aberdeen is a port town. So, visit Aberdeen Harbour and take a 45 minute boat cruise around the commercial harbour.
Aberdeen Maritime Museum
The award-winning museum is intact with views that are legitimately considered to be fascinating and indeed powerful. The museum houses a unique collection of exhibits covering shipbuilding, fishing and port history, this is for the reason that the North Sea Oil Production Replica is here.
The structure of this replica will definitely make you knowledgeable about the different operation that is being conducted in this particular factory. The oldest building in the city can also be visited by tourists, which is the Provost Ross’s House, in this museum. It covers ship-buildings including the fishing and whaling industries which are commonly worked out here in Aberdeen.
The Gordon Highlanders Museum
This museum celebrates the history and culture of over two centuries of one of Scotland’s greatest kilted regiments, the Gordon Highlanders.
Known as the “jewel in the crown” of the city’s fantastic parks, The David Welch Winter Gardens boasts a Tropical House featuring flora from South and Central America, an Acrid House which creates desert conditions for exotic cacti to flourish, and a Corridor of Perfumes which celebrates the variety of perfumes from different plant species.
NorthEast Falconry Centre
Offers a uniquely close experience with Scotland’s birds of prey. Introduction to Falconry, outside demonstrations and walks with hawks are just some of the exciting and educational activities on offer.
Eat and drink in Anberdeen
Well know for Aberdeen Angus Beef and, obviously, Scottish whisky, there are plenty of different types of cuisines to try in Aberdeen. As Aberdeen has a lot of oil worker form all over the world, there are many restaurants to enjoy whether you’re on a budget or would like to splash out.
With over 135 bars and pubs dotted around Aberdeen there’s plenty to choose from. Aberdeen has a great selection of traditional pubs to trendy bars. Here’s a selection you don’t want to miss out on:
The Grill – this bar has been an Aberdeen institution for the last 100 years. Choose from over 600 whiskys from all over the world.
Brewdog – visit the flagship of the world renowned Brewdog bars brand and sample some of the best craft beers available from around the world. bmi regional tip – try the food as well!
Stay well in Aberdeen
Rest assured that there are plenty of places to stay in the city
If you’re looking for somewhere to meet colleagues, the Atholl Hotel is ideally placed in the centre of Aberdeen. The four-star residence offers two conference rooms, free Wi-Fi internet access in all bedrooms and function rooms and a large private car park. This is an ideal hotel for the business traveller, whether they are in Aberdeen for a day of meetings or an overnight stay.
Set on Royal Deeside against 11 acres of beautiful woodland, the five-star Marcliffe Hotel and Spa provides luxury in an intimate setting. Individually designed rooms are comfortable and elegant and cater for both business and leisure guests. www.marcliffe.com
Malmaison Aberdeen has everything we’ve come to expect from the boutique chain – comfortable and relaxing rooms with quirky designs. There is a low-lit bar with deep sofas and a whisky snug as well as a cavernous brasserie with open kitchen, intimate booths and its own butchery. www.malmaison.com
A taste of home in the city
For a longer stay in Aberdeen, you may want to consider the Magellan Apartments. These short stay apartments have everything you need for home from home comfort, including a fully functional kitchen, relaxing living area and comfortable bedrooms and bathrooms.
The luxury Skene House Whitehall in Rosemount Village offers a truly residential feel with private gardens. As part of the Skene House portfolio of hotels, the Whitehall’s interiors are full of grandeur, while the HotelSuites are designed in a range of styles from country house comfort to modern and minimalistic. Skene House is perfect for a couple’s retreat or even a family break. Choose from a range of bmi regional flights to Aberdeen and start planning your trip!
If you want to stay in the centre of Aberdeen, the Hilton Garden Inn is a comfortable base for exploring the city centre’s shops, restaurants and nightlife.
Remember, Aberdeen’s biggest business is oil. There are always oil workers coming to and from the city – and the influx of people means that the hotels get full very quickly. Make sure you book your hotel well in advance.
Outside the City
Outside of the Granite City, Aberdeenshire is a lovely unspoilt countryside, dramatic coastline and crumbling castles. An area rich in history that offers visitors everything from world-class golf courses, amazing wildlife and some of the country’s oldest whisky distilleries, all set against the backdrop of Scotland’s most stunning scenery.
+ information for history buffs
Aberdeen grew up as two separate burghs – Old Aberdeen at the mouth of the Don and New Aberdeen, a fishing and trading settlement where the Denburn entered the Dee estuary. The earliest charter was granted by King William the Lion about 1179, confirming the corporate rights granted by David I. The city received other royal charters later.
In 1319, the Great Charter of Robert the Bruce transformed Aberdeen into a property owning and financially independent community. The city was burned by Edward III of England in 1336, but was soon rebuilt and extended, and called New Aberdeen. For many centuries the city was subject to attacks by the neighbouring lords, and was strongly fortified, but the gates were all removed by 1770.
In the 18th century a new Town Hall was built, elegantly furnished with a marble fireplace from Holland and a set of fine crystal chandeliers and sconces. The 19th century was a time of considerable expansion.
By 1901 the population was 153,000 and the city covered more than 6,000 acres (24 km²). In the late 18th century, the council embarked on a scheme of road improvements, and by 1805 George Street, King Street and Union Street were open, the latter a feat of extraordinary engineering skill involving the partial levelling of St Catherine’s Hill and the building of arches to carry the street over Putachieside. The increasing economic importance of Aberdeen and the development of the shipbuilding and fishing industries brought a need for improved harbour facilities. During this century much of the harbour as it exists today was built including Victoria Dock, the South Breakwater and the extension to the North Pier.