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Aberdeen – city guide





Aberdeen is Scotland’s third most populous city, one of Scotland’s 32 local government council areas and the United Kingdom’s 29th most populous city, with an official population estimate of 220,420.








When looking for luxury hotels in Aberdeen, the Aberdeen Marriott Hotel offers elegant accommodations in the thriving port known as Granite City. This Aberdeen hotel’s location puts it just two miles from the airport and six miles to the city center. Stylish Aberdeen hotel is a haven for relaxation that features air conditioning, work space, 24-hour service, complimentary car parking for registered guests and wireless Internet. Guests will find that hotel in Aberdeen is truly perfect for a relaxing weekend away or business trip. The ballroom can hold up to a maximum of 300 guests and is ideal as a wedding venue or for private functions with idyllic banqueting facilities.





Mercure Aberdeen Ardoe House Hotel and Spa is a 19th century mansion house set in 30 acres of tranquil countryside. This 4 star Aberdeen hotel is 3 miles outside the city centre, and has 109 traditionally decorated guest rooms with satellite TV and internet access throughout. Enjoy sophisticated dining in Blairs Restaurant or a nightcap in Soapie’s Lounge Bar. The spa has luxurious treatment rooms as well as an indoor heated pool and fitness room.




Thistle Aberdeen Airport is the perfect choice if you’re looking for luxury and comfort on the doorstep of Scotland’s second busiest international airport. The terminal is a short stroll away or you can take the complimentary shuttle bus door-to-door. Further afield, Aberdeen city centre is just five miles away, making the hotel an ideal choice for business travellers and holiday-makers alike.

At Thistle Aberdeen Airport have 147 bedrooms, including 39 deluxe double rooms, and some of the best business meeting and wedding facilities Aberdeen has to offer.




Aberdeen Art Gallery is one of the city’s most popular tourist attractions. A particularly attractive example of late 19th century architecture, it houses one of the finest art collections in Britain with paintings, sculpture and graphics from the 15th century to the present day. Highlights from the rich and diverse decorative arts collection combined with an exciting programme of special exhibitions ensures that there is always something new for visitors to see.








Union Square
Union Square

Union Square is a stunning shopping and entertainment destination in the heart of Aberdeen that opened in October 2009.

Built by Hammerson plc at a cost of over £275 million, Union Square combines unique new architecture with the Aberdeen train station façade built in the early 20th century.

Union Square boasts over 70 stores and restaurants, a 10 screen cinema and 203 bedroom hotel right in the centre of Aberdeen. Alongside stores such as Marks and Spencer, Zara and Apple, restaurants such as YO! Sushi, Nando’s and ASK happily reside to provide a unique offering to the city.




The Bennachie Centre, your base for the numerous hill walks available is located near Garioch. There are a number of well-signposted trails, ranging from the easy half-mile route up to the more challenging hike. The area is rich with history and along various routes you can expect to view Pictish remains, classical mansions and much of the majestic Buchan countryside. Folklore is rife too, one of the sights  is supposedly filled with the tears of a young soldier captured after the Battle of Harlaw in 1411 who, upon his arrival home, found his sweetheart married to another. Whichever trail you decide upon, you are sure to gain a satisfying insight into the rich tapestry that is the history and culture of the North East.




Restaurant is situated in the centre of Aberdeen and seats around 40 Guests.

At tho Moonfish Café it’s strive to create fresh simple food focusing on bringing the essence of our produce out in the dishes rather than creating the drama of molecular refinements.

Winner Certificate of Excellence 2012 Moon Fish Café.



The restaurant is on ground level, which can be accessed via Golden Square. Both open and bright, the dining room holds up to 60 guests and has unparalleled views over the square. The restaurant boasts a diverse and distinctive spirit and wine list and a abundant bar collection, which caters to all tastes.

Talented chefs passionately create mouth watering dishes from fresh local ingredients. The menu boasts a wide variety of dishes, pleasing to even the discerning of palates. All dishes are prepared and cooked to order; and chefs are particularly accommodating to individuals suffering allergies or food intolerances. The menu is adapted every six weeks, ensuring that only the freshest seasonal produce is adopted in our recipes.
















the Stage Door Restaurant
the Stage Door Restaurant

Located at the heart of Aberdeen’s Cultural Quarter, The Stage Door Restaurant offers a truly unique dining experience.  Their aim is to provide delicious food, served in a professional manner by efficient and courteous staff.  The Stagedoor strive to create a convivial and relaxed ambience where your only concern will be what to select from their innovative and exciting menus



In August 2003 the owners, Yusuf and Karen Iridag, relocated to Aberdeen’s West-end and opened Rendezvous @ Nargile, offering a crossroads of dining experience. As the Bosphorus Bridge connects Asia and Europe, Ren- dezvous provides a modernised menu with both Middle-Eastern and Mediterranean influences.

Open everyday 12pm til late, Rendezvous is a family friendly restaurant and perfect for a relaxed meal at any time of the day. The decor is warm and contemporary and weather permitting, there is the option of al fresco dining which lends itself perfectly to the Mediterranean vibe.

With over 25 years of experience in the industry and a passion for producing some of the best dishes in town, Rendezvous @ Nargile provides the perfect Aberdeen restaurant experience.




Rustico is an exuberant neighborhood restaurant driven to deliver a one-two punch of honest, robust cooking against a backdrop of amazing beer. Warm, vivacious and adamantly unpretentious, Rustico was designed with good times in mind. With a cache of over 400beers, a bustling bar scene and a passionate kitchen committed to its craft, Rustico’s a restaurant to visit with family and friends time and time again.





Aberdeen Maritime Museum tells the story of the city’s long relationship with the Sea. This award-winning museum is located on the historic Shiprow and incorporates Provost Ross’s House, which was built in 1593. The Maritime Museum houses a unique collection covering shipbuilding, fast sailing ships, fishing and port history. It is also the only place in the UK where you can see displays on the North Sea oil and gas industry. Aberdeen Maritime Museum offers visitors a spectacular viewpoint over the busy harbour.



The Tolbooth Museum is housed in the former wardhouse, or prison for Aberdeen, a unique complex of 17th and 18th century gaol cells. First opened to the public as a museum in 1995 it is currently open to the public over the summer months from July to September. At all other times tours for school and community groups can be arranged.

The Tolbooth Museum is very popular with locals and tourists alike. Featured displays deal with local history and the evolution of crime and punishment over the centuries. The museum’s unique atmosphere and gaol cells provide a striking visitor experience and a real insight into imprisonment and the treatment of prisoners and rebel Jacobites in times gone by.





A WARM Scottish welcome to the Marcliffe Hotel Spa and Restaurant – a prestigious and intimate five-star luxury hotel set on scenically ravishing Royal Deeside against a backdrop of 11 acres of beautiful wooded grounds on the western fringe of the historical City of Aberdeen which has achieved a new pre-eminence as Europe’s energy capital.

A sense of comfort and well-being  is the overriding aim of management and markedly cosmopolitan staff. Seven suites and 35 bedrooms are all exclusively designed as a restful, elegant refuge for both the businessman and leisure traveller. Antique furniture links with traditional and contemporary styles of fabric to create an atmosphere of comfort and good taste.





Ma Cameron’s is a friendly, old-school pub with a modern outlook and a small unexpected roof terrace. Serving popular Deuchars, Lia Fail and Belhaven Best ales, Ma’s remains loyal to its heritage while also offering a wine selection providing far more than just the traditional wee glass of medium dry white wine for the lady.





The Lemon Tree is a vibrant, buzzing venue providing Aberdeen with an excellent alternative entertainment scene. The Lounge offers customers the chance to rock along to their favourite bands or laugh with the funniest comedians while enjoying a drink from the wide range of beverages at the bar. The upstairs Studio is an intimate performance space showcasing the best theatre productions, dance and children’s shows. The Studio provides an opportunity to get up close and personal with the performers with entertaining shows which also have great educational values.



Located in the heart of the city centre, the Music Hall hosts a wide variety of concerts, performances, shows and events.  From classical concerts to contemporary comedy, the biggest band to fantastic folk, the venue has something for everyone.




His Majesty’s Theatre in Aberdeen is the largest theatre in north-east Scotland, seating more than 1,400. The theatre is sited on Rosemount Viaduct, opposite the city’s Union Terrace Gardens. It was designed by Frank Matcham and opened in 1906. On its centenary in 2006, the theatre was “twinned” with His Majesty’s Theatre in Perth, Western Australia.

After a National Lottery grant was awarded in 1999, the theatre was the subject of a refurbishment and extension. The new glass-fronted box office, café and restaurant was designed by City Architect Trevor Smith, who also designed the award-winning Aberdeen Maritime Museum. The auditorium was completely refurbished and new seats were installed. Backstage facilities were also upgraded.



The Cowdray Hall is one of city’s most popular concert venues accentuated by superb acoustics. It is regularly hired by cultural organisations and features a busy programme of concerts and recitals. It hosts the popular Lunchbreak Concert series run is association with the University of Aberdeen and is home to Aberdeen Chamber Music Club’s concert season.



Duthie Park is a park of 44 acres which was donated to the city by Miss Duthie in 1880 and opened to the public in 1883.

The park has many artefacts including a bandstand, fountains, ponds, and statues. Within the park is the Winter Gardens, which were rebuilt in 1970. These house many exotic plants including the largest collection of cacti in Britain. This is a park for all the family, with activities from boating in the ponds to cricket on the lawns.

The park has cricket on the lawns, bands in the park in summer, and the ponds are to be refurbished if the City receives heritage lottery funding.

There are two children’s play areas, a cafe with toilets and toilets within the Winter Gardens.





A one-hectare park whose garden, surrounded by private housing, has streams, waterfalls, ponds, rockeries and rustic bridge that help to make this one of the most charming areas in the city. The garden is planted with rhododendrons, spring bulbs, heathers and alpines; the ponds are full of irises, aylesbury, mallard and muscovy ducks. This garden is well loved by bridal couples for photographs of their day.

The gardens is a large rockery with a pond and waterfall. There is a children’s play area. There are also toilets on site.



The small fishing village of Footdee can be found at the mouth of Aberdeen harbour and can be accessed via the Beach Esplanade of Aberdeen City, Scotland.

The village of Footdee comprises of two areas of fishing cottages built in two squares. In olden days the cottages would have housed fishermen and their fisherfolk families.






Dating from 1545, Provost Skene’s House now houses an attractive series of period rooms, furnished to show how people lived in the 17th, 18th and early 19th centuries. The house is named after one of Aberdeen’s most famous residents, Lord Provost George Skene, who is thought to have commissioned the carved plaster ceilings. Visitors can admire an unusual series of religious paintings in the Painted Gallery and enjoy changing displays of dress in the Costume Gallery.





Celebrating its 40th successful year, the Festival continues its commitment to nurturing and developing artistic and creative talent by providing world class venues for young people to perform to welcoming audiences.

AIYF began its life as a classical music festival in the 1960s in Switzerland and moved to Aberdeen in 1973, where orchestras and chamber musicians from across Europe gathered to perform and collaborate in a festival environment.  Forty years later and the festival has now grown, modernised and includes even more genres of the youth arts movement including dance, theatre, opera and world music.



Taste of Grampian, the one-day food and drink festival – a great day out for all the family. This popular annual event allows visitors to discover and sample the wide range of high quality food and drink products from Grampian in the north east of Scotland.

Local producers invite you to taste and buy the finest smoked salmon, mouth-watering shortbread, delicious ice-cream, sumptuous prime roast beef, creamy fudge and maybe a dram or two of the best Scottish whiskies from local distilleries and much more.

The festival programme also includes music, children’s entertainment, arts & crafts, cookery competitions and demonstrations.





the Green
the Green

Aberdeen’s historic Green and surroundings are amongst the oldest known parts of the city. The Green is one of four administrative medieval quarters recorded by 1399 and an important point of entry to the city. Religious and mercantile activity has underpinned the life and economics of the area over a 750 year period. The Green remains an important architectural and historic area reminding us of Aberdeen’s medieval urban origins through to its nineteenth century expansion.


Britain’s highest and most massive mountain range; its biggest native forests; spectacularly clean rivers and lochs; moorland and farmland and a stronghold for Britain’s wildlife – this special place offers the warmest of welcomes from people who live and work here. Whatever your interest, this website tells you everything you want to know about the National Park and the work of the Park Authority and its partners.

Three things help make the National Park stand out as a great place to visit:

There’s a load of different things to do. We’ve counted over 100 different activities taking place in one bit of the Park alone! Nowhere else in Britain has the range of landscapes all in one place that we have here, and its a big place; so there’s plenty of opporunity to find something different…

The setting. Britain’s highest and most massive mountain range, its biggest and best ancient forests, vast moorlands, fields and villages, rivers and lochs, red squirrels, reindeer, ospreys, eagles, wildcats in the woods…

It’s easy. There are nine visitor information centres, ten ranger bases and lots more attractions and centres to help you find what’s right for you. There are literally hundreds of miles of paths and trails, maps and leaflets, hire shops, expert guides, cafes and car parks.



Pitmedden is a breath-taking 17th century garden featuring over 5 miles of box hedging arranged in intricate patterns to form six parterres, filled with some 40,000 plants bursting with colour in the summer months – especially fine when viewed from the high grass terraces or the beautiful stone pavilion. Honeysuckle, jasmine and roses create a succession of fragrances, and fountains, topiary, sundials and a herb garden add to the sense of discovery. With over 80 varieties of apple trees there is a spectacular show of blossom and scent in the spring.



Duthie Park is a park of 44 acres which was donated to the city by Miss Duthie in 1880 and opened to the public in 1883.

The park has many artefacts including a bandstand, fountains, ponds, and statues. Within the park is the Winter Gardens, which were rebuilt in 1970. These house many exotic plants including the largest collection of cacti in Britain. This is a park for all the family, with activities from boating in the ponds to cricket on the lawns.

The park has cricket on the lawns, bands in the park in summer, and the ponds are to be refurbished if the City receives heritage lottery funding.

There are two children’s play areas, a cafe with toilets and toilets within the Winter Gardens.



A pub since 1850, the Prince of Wales is known for its beer not its décor, although it features a locally renowned fitting: one of the longest bars in Aberdeen. Boasting its own brew, it also has an impressive selection of Scottish and English ales and over 500 guest beers have been supped here in the last four years. The mix of customers is truly eclectic. Little old ladies sip port and lemon alongside bearded beer bores. The bar food is down to earth but tasty with macaroni cheese or steak pie for under a fiver.

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