The Linn o’Dee is one of the best known (and most beautiful) examples of a Linn (a Scottish geological feature, in which the course of a stream or river cuts through rock to create a narrow, turbulent valley). The Linn o’Dee cuts through the heavy rock strata outside the village of Braemar (60-odd miles west of Aberdeen city). Combine a visit to picturesque Braemar with a bracing walk through the forests to the Linn, and be sure to stop at a neighbouring hostelry for a warming whisky when you’re done! Alternatively, the Gordon’s Tearoom and Bakery serves hot drinks and homemade baked goodies for the weary traveller.
Aberdeen’s out of the way location leads many to suppose there’s not much happening in the Granite City. They’d be wrong. Move 120 miles further north from Edinburgh to the confluence of the rivers Don and Dee, and you’ll find one of the UK’s largest and most cosmopolitan cities. Beautiful public parks, extraordinary architecture made from locally quarried granite (hence the city’s nickname) and a healthy injection of cash from the all-powerful North Sea oil industry make Aberdeen a genuine contender for the crown of Britain’s best hidden gem.
Great places to visit in Aberdeen!
The good stuff doesn’t stop at the city limits. Aberdeen is perfectly located for all that’s best about a Scottish holiday: snowboarding, mountaineering, hiking, golf and ancient monuments. Where else in the country could you enjoy a day out in the remotest of glens, followed by a well-heeled night at the opera?
Aberdeen Maritime Museum
Aberdeen’s ancient Shiprow – which used to be the street leading from the harbour into the centre of the city – is home to the Aberdeen Maritime Museum. Uniquely, the Museum is composed of several buildings in the Shiprow, including the old Provost’s house (Provost Ross’ House). The displays are mainly to do with shipbuilding and the fisheries. There are also some displays and models of sailing ships. The Museum has won awards for its extraordinary collections, and for its buildings: the glass and steel Link Building connecting Provost Ross’ House to the Trinity Congregational Church netted the five star museum three architectural awards in 1997.
Tiny Johnston Gardens make it onto the list by virtue of their extraordinary beauty: proving that size doesn’t always matter! The city’s most popular wedding photography spot, Johnston Gardens have been designed brilliantly to showcase year-round crops of flowers and shrubs. The little park on Viewfield Road is surrounded by residences, and is landscaped with ponds and water features. The iron bridge at the centre of the park is its most iconic feature, and a great favourite with the brides and grooms. There’s also a children’s play area (which is ideal, as there are no grassy areas for kids to play on) and public toilets.