The silver city
Aberdeen, Scotland’s third-largest city, is a town with sparkle. Its glittering granite skyline, famous the world over, is matched by an impressive line-up of culture, shopping and nightlife from world-class restaurants to first-rate museums.
“Aberdeen is so friendly, we felt really welcome. We spent a day exploring the town and than headed out to some of the most beautiful countryside I have ever seen. There are so many amazing castles, we couldn’t keep track.”
Julia Li, Hong Kong
Aberdeen, Scotland’s third-largest city, is a town with sparkle. Its glittering granite skyline, famous the world over, is matched by an impressive line-up of culture, shopping and nightlife from world-class restaurants to first-rate museums. It’s one of the only cities in Britain with a proper sandy beach and there’s some of Scotland’s most seductive scenery just outside the city in Royal Deeside, the The Cairngorms National Park and along the coast. You’ll leave intoxicated by rich maritime history, eye-catching architecture and some of the world’s finest whiskies.
Aberdeen has long and close ties with the ocean - it’s a bustling port where ferries dock and depart, fishing boats bring home the day’s catch and oil workers leave town for the offshore rigs. On land, Aberdeen boasts a lively cultural scene with several great venues hosting gigs, comedy and theatre.
You’ll find all your favourite high street shops on Union Street, Belmont Street and George Street. For something more special try the boutique shops on The Green and in the West End. The Union Square development and Bon Accord Centre are good options if you want all your shops under one roof.
Take your pick from some excellent museums, have a day at the beach or tour one of Aberdeenshire’s famous whisky distilleries. The award-winning Maritime Museum is a must-see as is Aberdeen’s old town with its cobbled streets and graceful granite buildings.
Experience what it’s like to sleep on an oil rig at the Maritime Museum
Catch a gig at the Lemontree, the mainstay of Aberdeen’s live music and performance scene
Visit Aberdeen Art Gallery with its fine collection of art from the 15th century to the present day
Take in a play or a show at the Music Hall, His Majesty’s Theatre
Venture out of the city to discover Grampian’s great castles
Savour a whisky in a traditional Scottish pub – try Ma Cameron’s on Little Belmont Street or the Prince of Wales on St Nicholas Lane
Get out of town and explore the spectacular coastline around the city
Explore the past at the 16th-century Provost Skene’s House with period furniture and costumes
Aberdeenshire is home to over 50 golf courses including the prestigious Royal Aberdeen, Cruden Bay and Murcar Links. And if you’re into your fishing you can’t go wrong with the salmon-stuffed River Dee and the River Don known as one of the finest wild brown trout rivers in Europe.
With a busy harbour and huge fish market, Aberdeen is the place to head for great seafood. Seek out the Silver Darling for super sea views and even better fish or the Ashvale which stakes a claim as the best fish and chip shop in Scotland. Visit in June for the Taste of Grampian Food Festival.
See a band at the Lemon Tree or hit local pubs for live Scottish music and local entertainment. You’ll also find bars and clubs to suit most tastes clustered around Union and Belmont Streets.
There’s so much to see and do in Aberdeen, so don’t waste time in queues, buy your travel passes and attraction tickets online! With the BritRail GB Flexi Pass you can hop on a train wherever and whenever you like, and explore Britain at your own pace. For more great offers, go to VisitBritain Shop.