Often referred to as ‘The Granite City’, after the gleaming silver stone that makes up most of its buildings, Aberdeen is Scotland’s north-eastern powerhouse. Despite being one of the UK’s more remote cities, it’s actually one of the most historic, and it takes full advantage of its unique and beautiful coastal setting.
Match that with antiquated architecture, age-old universities and a thriving arts & culture scene, and it’s easy to see why so many are tempted up to Aberdeen.
But if you’ve only got a weekend to see the sights, where should you head first? To find out, we asked five Aberdeen experts to tell us their top picks.
Victoria, Writer at The Ayelife, says…
“Aberdeen Beach, or Queens Links as it’s also known, is the perfect place to spend a day out. The waterfront is home to Codona’s, Aberdeen’s answer to Alton Towers, as well as lots of fab restaurants, shops, a cinema and even an Art Deco style ballroom, built in the roaring 20s. Why not blow away those cobwebs with a wander along the promenade, a stop at Inversnecky Ice Cream shop, followed by a fiery Calabrese at Bella Italia? It couldn’t be easier to get to; the golden sands of Aberdeen Beach are just a 10-minute walk from the city centre.”
Sarah Forsyth, Blogger at BVE Life, says...
“A short walk from the city centre by the banks of the River Dee, you’ll find the beautiful Duthie Park. Spread across 44 acres, there’s tons to do here. For the little ones you’ll find three play parks each catering to every age – they’ll giggle for hours on the old steam tractor, race each other on the giant slides and get up to adventures in the mushroom capped play houses. At the top of the park is my favourite part, the David Welch Winter Gardens. It’s home to Arid and Tropical houses, as well as Japanese Garden to commemorate those lost at Hiroshima and Nagasaki. You’ll find yourself wandering around, looking at all the beautiful flowers and plants, koi fish and terrapins as you go.
The park is open all year round and is one of the best places to spend a day in Aberdeen no matter the weather. Remember to bring along a picnic to have by the bandstand, or enjoy a bite to eat in the newly refurbished Park Cafe.”
Hollie Berries, Blogger at Hollieberries.co.uk, says…
“Nestled away from the hustle and bustle, right at the far end of Aberdeen beach, lies the historic fishing village Footdee – or “Fittie” as it’s known to the locals.
Bursting with charm, this little settlement dates back to the early 19th century when it was originally built as a community for fishermen and their families. The village is jam packed with tiny ‘But and Ben’ style cottages and colourful doors, facing inward to protect them from storms. Each home also has an outhouse directly across from it. Once used as toilets, most of these have been converted to better use as artists’ studios and entertainment spaces, with many decorated to delight. A stroll around Footdee will take you back in time and is not to be missed on any trip to Aberdeen!”
Anastasia Fountouli, Blogger at Natbee’s, says…
“Old Aberdeen is easily the most beautiful corner of the city and is adored by tourists and locals alike. With its historic buildings, cobbled streets and quaint houses, this is a wonderful place to start your Aberdeen adventure.
The area is buzzing during the academic term as it hosts the campus of the University of Aberdeen - Scotland’s third oldest university and the fifth oldest University in the English-speaking world. Here, you’ll find quiet corners to sit and read a book in, stunning architecture to snap to your heart's desire and the best coffee spots in the city. If modern architecture’s more your thing, head over to the University library. It was listed among The Independent’s “top 10 spell-binding University libraries in the world” and offers stunning views of the city and the beach!”
Annierose Knox, Content Promotions Editor at Visit Scotland says…
“One of my first stops in Aberdeen, particularly during the summer, is the beachfront harbour. It offers the chance to catch a glimpse of one of my favourite animals – the bottlenose dolphin! The vantage point at Torry Battery is open seasonally to help visitors spot marine life. The views from up here are amazing; see the city from a unique vantage point whilst looking out for the intelligent, acrobatic dolphins, who can’t seem to get enough of the chilly North Sea waters.
The rush of excitement when you spot one rise from the water or see a pair leap playfully into the air is hard to beat, and it’s such an unusual sight in the heart of a city. You could even hit the wild waters with a boat cruise from the harbour and spot them out at sea!”
With so much to see and do, it’s about time you made the trip up to Aberdeen. Get planning your stay in Granite City with Jurys Inn Aberdeen.
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