Exploring the coastal route in Aberdeenshire is filled with stops at traditional fishing villages and busy market towns dotted beside the North Sea.
We are talking with David McCubbin who is passionate about supporting smaller villages along the North East Coastal Route to become thriving communities for residents and visitors alike.
David moved up to Aberdeenshire from Sommerset several years ago and chose the special coastal village of Cullen to become his family home. David wears multiple hats in his work life, having spent several years working within tourism and currently as Project Officer for the town center development project.
David shares with us the many challenges coastal communities face and the efforts to support each community to be a great place to live. David reveals some of his favourite places to visit in the North East of Scotland.
Peterhead & Cullen
In the podcast we speak largely about Peterhead & Cullen although there are several coastal villages mentioned in the episode. Cullen is famous for a couple of things, the infamous Cullen Skink soup which is loved by many, and the unique rail viaduct which runs directly through the village. Cullen is positioned on the side of a hill overlooking the settlement of Seatown which is a conservation area and sits next to the harbour and Cullen bay.
The voluntary Tourist Information Centre in Cullen provides visitors with lots of handy information. Along with pretty beaches, walks and charming village with plenty of independent shops and places to eat and enjoy the picturesque setting. Cullen makes a great stop on the coastal route. In the colder months of the year, this is also a good spot to try and see the Northern Lights.
The Peterhead Town Trail is a historic walking trail through the harbour town of Peterhead. The town has an interesting history with the busy fishing harbour and the Peterhead Prison which is now a 5* tourist attraction. The trail takes you through the development of the town and explains the lost stories, villages and heritage of this part of the North East of Scotland. Below is the link to a video commissioned by Aberdeenshire Council and made by Kim Grant who takes you on a virtual tour of some of the highlights of the Trail.
Aberdeenshire Coastal Route
The coastal route is a 165 km route which starts from Buckie in the north of Aberdeenshire and runs through to Stonehaven, or visa versa.
Visit Scotland has a 4 day itinerary if you fancy taking a driving holiday which will take you along the most scenic parts of the county. There is a handy downloadable map that shows great places for your to stop and explore. We recommend visitors take their time on this route as there are some lovely beaches, walks and places to visit.
Some of the key places we can recommend are: the village and harbour of Portsoy, the picturesque sea arch “Bowfiddle Rock” at Portknockie, Findochtry Castle or Findlater Castle (Both ruins but interesting stops), Tarlair Lido, Duff House, MacDuff Aquarium, Crovie, Aberlour Beach and Rattray Lighthouse to name but a few.
There are a collection of walking trails so if you like stretching your legs in between your drives, visit the details on the Walk Highlands website to see where you can go.
Coastal Route perfect for Photography
There are several nature reserves in the North East which are perfect locations for spotting wildlife and practicing your photography skills. There are also a number of atmospheric lighthouses, harbours and architectural gems if this is more your object of choice. Whether you are a professional or amateur there are locations galore for you to chose from. If you would like to learn more about the art of Photography consider taking a workshop while visiting the North East.
We saw in the video of Peterhead Town Trail, Kim Grant who is a talented photographer and offers workshops and inspiration. Visit her Youtube channel for ideas of where you can take your next award winning photo and those little unknown places you can get away from it all.