A guide to the hidden gems of Aberdeen

Dolphin jumping off the coast of Aberdeen Beach

RGU alumna Marisa, shares her favourite Aberdeen hidden gems that you can easily explore by bus, showing just how easy it is to get around Aberdeen.

One of my favourite things to do in Aberdeen is to explore and discover new places. There are countless instagrammable locations, from historic buildings and parks to stunning views of the harbour; there is something for everyone. As I don’t drive, getting a First Bus day ticket and taking the bus to these locations makes things a lot easier and faster, and makes it possible to go to more than one location in a day.

Here are some of my favourite spots:

Old Aberdeen

From cobbled streets to stunning buildings, there is always something to admire in Old Aberdeen, whatever the season is. I usually take the bus 1 or 2 (easy to catch from the RGU Campus or from Aberdeen City Centre) to Linksfield Road, and then walk for about 5 minutes to Powis Gates, a beautiful archway with two towers. From there I just wander around the cobbled streets, through King’s College which makes you feel like you are in Hogwarts, past the Old Town House which is now the King’s Museum and of course past all the beautiful houses. While I’m there, I always take a walk along River Don, through Seaton Park towards Brig o’ Balgownie, one the oldest bridges in the UK.

Donmouth Local Nature Reserve

Donmouth Local Nature Reserve is a great location to escape from the busy city, for a nice relaxing walk on the beach, passing by sand dunes and beautiful sea views. You can often spot seals and other wildlife. It is also a perfect spot to watch the sunrise on a clear day. You can take bus 1 or 2 to the stop “Beach Esplanade” and it’s about a 5-minute walk from there.

Photo taken by Marisa Vogiatzi – Instagram @marisa.vogiatzi


If you have lived in Aberdeen for a while, you have probably been to the beach. At the end of Esplanade, near the harbour, lies the charming little village of Footdee or locally known as “Fittie”. There you can walk around and admire the cute cottages and gardens that are decorated by their residents. You can get bus 15 and either get off at “Beach Boulevard” and walk along the beach, or you can get off right at Footdee at the bus stop “York Street”. On the way back I love to stop for a warm drink or something to eat. Some of my favourite places are the Highlanders Bus or Roots Catering food truck, both loved by locals.

Torry Battery

This is a great place for dolphin watching and breathtaking views of the city. You can go any time of the day to Torry Battery, but I would definitely recommend going for sunset. When the dolphins jump out of the water, the golden light reflects off them and it’s one of the most beautiful scenes to witness. Fun fact: Scotland has the largest bottlenose dolphins in the world! You can take bus 12 to the stop “North Balnagask Road” and from there it’s about a 10-minute walk to the battery.

Photo taken by Marisa Vogiatzi – Instagram @marisa.vogiatzi


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