Longer Day Trips
We would strongly recommend the following options:-
In deepest Aberdeenshire head out past Huntly (1 hour 10) and there is a huge choice of distilleries to choose from. Take your pick from Balvennie, Glenfiddich, Craigellachie, Glenfarclas, Glen Grant, Aberlour, Dufftown or Glendronach to name but a few. Simply nominate the non-partaking driver and you’re good to go!
North-eastern coastal tour
Taking the Northern Coastal route out of Aberdeen on the way to Cruden Bay (1hr 10) be sure to visit the sand dunes of Balmedie, Newburgh Seal Beach, Forvie Nature Reserve, Collieston Harbour, Slains Castle and Cruden Bay, now famed for its glorious kite-surfing and world-class golf course and rocky outcrop way out to sea.
Northern coastal tour
There is a great wee section of coastline between Pennan and Cullen Bay stopping off at Crovie and Portsoy along the way.
Angus Glens (1hr 10) – Glen Esk, Glen Clova, Glen Isla and Glen Prosen all offer wonderful walking, cycling and hiking opportunities.
Take the train from Laurencekirk to either Dundee (40 mins) or Aberdeen (30 mins)
Aberdeen, the Granite City, renowned for its granite buildings throughout, has a wonderful vibe and centres around the Union Terrace Gardens, but there are many other gardens to enjoy. Be sure to visit Provost Skene’s House and the Art Gallery. There’s a real treat to be had at Old Aberdeen in the north of the city – 11 acres of garden grounds and buildings steeped in history dating back to medieval times. Make a stop at Footdee, pronounced ‘Fittie’ which is an old fishing village at the east end of the harbour.
Dundee, a city famed for jute, jam and journalism, sat on mouth of the River Tay, has been regenerated down by the waterfront and has the V and A museum, the Discovery Ship, the Verdant Works and the excellent MacManus Gallery.
The nearby thriving little satellite town of Broughty Ferry, also served by occasional trains, has some wonderful bespoke little shops, a lifeboat station and a lively feel, certainly well worth a visit.
Arbroath and Montrose are both of significant historical interest. The Declaration of Arbroath was signed in 1320 and was intended to assert Scotland’s status as an independent sovereign state. There is an exhibition to re-tell the story in the newly refurbished visitor centre in the grounds of Arbroath Abbey.
Explore all that Big Tree Country has to offer. This is all about rivers, lochs, woodland and pretty little towns along the way. A day trip from Kair to Pitlochry to be used as the central touring base takes 1hr30.
In under 1hr10 Fife is a hidden gem with thriving St. Andrews at its centre, it has an abundance of pretty, small coastal villages from Crail down to Anstruther, Cellardyke, St. Monans, Pittenweem and Elie and Earlsferry. Enjoy a coastal walk on one of the smaller sections and you really will experience all that Fife has to offer.
The great sea light results in this being a haven for artists and fish restaurants and eateries abound.