Scotland's Granite City

Though overcast and drizzly days are not uncommon in Aberdeen, when the sun comes out, the city sparkles. Built of the omnipresent granite for which the city is known, the buildings grey stone exteriors reflect the sunshine like millions of little prisms, and provide a handsome backdrop to the city's many parks and gardens. A booming and prosperous oil town, Aberdeen has a vibrant nightlife, (one of Scotland's largest nightclubs is here) upscale restaurants and pubs and a colorful harbor scene reminiscent of Aberdeen's maritime and fishing past.

Further a field, there are wild, unspoiled beaches, rolling dunes, and spectacular cliffs. Baronial castles and country homes, frequented by Britain's royals, are dotted throughout Royal Deeside and nearby Balmoral, and there are isolated and hauntingly beautiful lochs where you can hike and, if you can brave the temperatures, swim.

Aberdeen can seem a little more out of the way than say, Edinburgh or Glasgow, but it's only a picturesque two and half hour train ride to get to these cities and Aberdeen's airport makes getting to the south of England or Europe convenient, easy and affordable.