Aberdeen is a port city in northeast Scotland and the third most populous city in the country. The city is 150 km northeast of Edinburgh and 641 km north of London. This is actually the point where the Don and Dee rivers meet the North Sea.
Aberdeen is a city that has earned itself the name ‘Granite City’ for being home to numerous enduring grey-stone buildings that mushroomed majorly during the 18th to mid-20th centuries. The buildings incorporated locally quarried grey granite which somehow sparkled like silver due to its high content of mica.
As the northernmost major city in the United Kingdom, there is so much you can see and do here during your vacation. Therefore, read on and discover the attractions you need to include in your itinerary during your trip to Aberdeen.
Johnston Gardens is a tiny garden in Aberdeen accessed from Viewfield Road near the Gordon Highlanders Museum in the Rubislaw district of central Aberdeen. Though the park was gifted to the city in 1936, it was initially part of the Johnston House estate.
The park is the smallest public space in Aberdeen covering only a hectare, but its small size is not a hindrance to its beauty. In fact, this is one place the newlyweds swear by when it comes to capturing those fairly tales and unforgettable pictures.
The peaceful Johnston Garden is one place you’re guaranteed to find impressive Japanese culture, blooming flowers, and simply gorgeous colours. The garden equally features breathtaking waterfalls, ponds, rockeries, a delightful oasis, and stunning streams to help you relax and forget all your troubles.
The rustic bridge also makes this place a perfect hideout for friends and family members who want to spend time together when vacationing. No wonder these gardens have won the prestigious Britain in Bloom Award severally similar to the city itself which won the same award for 9 years consecutively until it was banned to allow other cities a chance.
City of Aberdeen Gin Distillery and Gin School
This is the first distillery in Aberdeen and has been in existence for nearly 80 years. It is located in the heart of the Scottish City of Aberdeen within a historic railway arch. In fact, its location is enough attraction to most travellers. Or is it the fact that people enjoy the rambling of the trains overhead?
The city of Aberdeen Gin Distillery is also home to the Aberdeen Gin School. Visitors are welcome to sample the gins produced here as well as take a distillery tour. For more adventure, take a chance to distill your very own 70cl bottle of gin at the Gin School. There is also a shop you can purchase your best gins for your consumption or gifts to take back home to your loved ones.
Books and beans
This is a Fair Trade Coffee shop, café, and quirky second-hand bookshop located at 22 Belmont Street. It is specialized in selling fair trade coffee, tea, and soft drinks. They also offer café menus for breakfast options such as toasties, omelettes, homemade soups, sandwiches, paninis, burgers, fries, pancakes, and an excellent selection of cakes. They also have gluten-free and vegan options so you don’t have to worry if you can’t do meats and dairy products.
With more than 10,000 books on the first floor and a space to showcase artistic works of various artists, this place is the top spot for book buyers and art enthusiasts. The most impressive this about this place is the fact that they offer the best environment to read and enjoy a meal.
It is a perfect spot when you simply want to enjoy some quiet moments alone. You can take advantage of the cool environment to take your imagination to a higher level and write a story. You can as well catch up on some readings you haven’t been able to due to your busy schedules or get lost in a new book. Do whatever you find meaningful to do here but don’t forget to indulge in the tasty lunch delicacy being served here.
St Machar Cathedral
Aberdeen is home to incredible architecture and St Machar Cathedral is a good example. This church’s striking beauty will definitely wow you. A lot of travellers who frequent Aberdeen each year do so intending to visit this site. They just want to confirm what they see in pictures or hear from different people is true.
Popularly known as Old Machar, St Machar Cathedral is a church of Scotland Church in Aberdeen. It is situated to the north of the city center at the former burgh of Old Aberdeen.
However, its name may be confusing to some people who think it’s a church but technically it’s not. The cathedral church of St Machar is actually a high kirk because, since 1690, it has not been a seat of a Catholic Church bishop in Scotland or the Scottish Episcopal.
Another reason which draws visitors to this cathedral is the fact that tales have it that William Wallace’s arm is still buried within the walls to this date. William Wallace was executed in 1305. His body was cut up into pieces and sent to a different part of the country to warn other dissenters. That’s how his arm ended in Aberdeen and got buried in the walls of the cathedral.
Although Bishop Henry Cheyne wanted to extend the church, his work was disrupted by the Scottish Wars of Independence. But even without any expansion, this building full of misery and interesting history is worth a visit.
Best known for receiving the Resort Seaside Award in 2013, Aberdeen beach is a popular recreational space in Aberdeen. Located a short distance from Aberdeen city center, this is the first beach visitors think about every time they want to spend time near the waters.
The beach attracts many visitors throughout the year thanks to its stunning beauty and the water sports that take place here. Among the things you’ll enjoy at the beach in addition to water sports are a range of cafes, restaurants, a family fun fair, a cinema, Retail Park, and a fitness gym.
You can also come down here just to enjoy a leisurely stroll along the gorgeous stretch of Aberdeen beach. The surroundings offer an incredible way to distress and reenergize during your vacation.
A trip to the Seaton Park is the way to go when you want to drift away from the modern world for a while. It’s actually one of the best hideaways in Aberdeen a visitor can think about.
The park is also among the biggest parks in Aberdeen. Though it was originally owned by Major J M Hay, it was bought by the city in 1947 to be used as a public park. It has ample parking space, good facilities for relaxing, and nice kids’ play areas making it the perfect place for family outings in Aberdeen.
Tour Aberdeen today
Aberdeen may be an ancient city but there is a lot to see and do here that one visit isn’t enough. You need to come back a few more times to at least exhaust the top attractions. Also, get an opportunity to speak a little Doric; an old Scottish dialect still spoken here, or watch a dolphin swim in the nearby waters. Indeed there is a lot that can be said about this magical city but it would be best to come and get the experience at first hand.