Hiring a car in Aberdeen

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Hiring a car in Aberdeen

Pick up your hire car at Aberdeen Airport and get ready for coastal splendour and ski-slope fun.

60-second guide to Aberdeen

in its own head

"Take the best bits of Edinburgh, a hint of Barcelona, Scotland's largest national park and even our own beach - all without the tourist hordes."

but more realistically

There may be a beach but only seals or the insane actually go for a swim. Still, there's plenty in this lively city to keep you busy when it isn't bikini weather.

the vibe

Outdoorsy - taking a walk in the city's numerous award-winning gardens and parks, not to mention along its coastline, is more refreshing than dunking your head in a bucket of cold beer on a hot day.

the natives

If they're speaking in heavy Doric, the local dialect, you may have no idea what they're saying. They are, though, happy to speak slowly and loudly for tourists.

the weather

It's not the place to go for a suntan but isn't as wet as you might expect. When the temperature nudges into the 20s, it's your cue to jump into the North Sea.

the local speciality

Due to the oil money that has flooded into the city in the last 30 years, there are plenty of high-quality restaurants. Wherever you go, eat the seafood - it's probably been caught that morning.

the celebrity

Songstress Annie Lennox was born in Aberdeen. Sweet dreams are obviously made of fresh North Sea air and buildings made of granite.

did you know?

Aberdeen has won the Royal Horticultural Society's Britain in Bloom Best City award a record 10 times.

they say

"Fusing striking granite architecture, a rich and inspiring history, a dynamic modern arts scene and a strong industrial heritage; Aberdeen offers a host of treasures." - www.visitscotland.com

5 to see in town...

1. The Maritime Museum

Aberdeen and the sea go way back - the locals have been riding its waves and pilfering its treasures for hundreds of years. Get up to speed on their intimate relationship by visiting this museum.

where to park?

Park your hire car at the Virginia Street car park, which costs £1.30 for up to two hours.

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2. Johnston Gardens

It may not be the city's largest open space but these gardens prove that some of the best things come in small, floral packages.

where to park?

There's a free car park by the entrance to the gardens.

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3. Aberdeen Beach

There are few things better than strolling along a stretch of golden sand after a long lunch. So it's lucky Aberdeen has a beach on its doorstep - just watch out for the kite-surfers.

where to park?

There's free parking next to the beach.

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4. Aberdeen Art Gallery

Once you tire of the bracing sea air on the city's beach, why not head to this gallery and take in some Scottish artwork while standing by a radiator?

where to park?

Park your hire car at the multi-storey car park in Denburn Road. It costs 70p an hour.

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5. Benholm's Tower

Scotland does castles better than most, so it'd be a shame - nae a crime - not to visit one while in Aberdeen. This little number may be small but it's still worth searching out.

where to park?

There's street parking in the Tillydrone area of town, starting at 30p an hour.

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and 4 to drive to...

1. Glenshee Ski Centre

Glenshee boasts the most extensive slopes and snowboard runs in the UK. Don your woolly hat and slick shades, and join some of Scotland's bravest hearts.

how to get there?

Expect a two-hour car journey to Glenshee. Head southwest on A9013/Union St toward St Catherine's Wynd. Pick up the A93 and follow this all the way to the resort.

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2. Cairngorm Ski Resort

The spectacular setting of this ski resort makes it tempting to visit even if you're not a fan of the slopes. Unfortunately, you'll need to be on skis to access the stunning vista.

how to get there?

It will take a good two and a half hours to reach Cairngorm. Head southwest and follow the A944. Pick up the A939 and look out for signs for the B970. Join the B970 and follow signs for the resort.

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3. The Lecht Ski Centre

The Lecht ski centre is just over 50 miles from the centre of Aberdeen and a favourite among snowboarding beginners. It's the perfect day away to test out your ski-slope skills.

how to get there?

Follow the B9119, then continue on the A944 following signs to the ski centre. The journey may take up to an hour and a half, depending on traffic.

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4. Banchory

Twenty miles outside Aberdeen is the beautiful bustling town of Banchory, home to a host of art galleries and foodie shops, many of whom supply goodies to the queen.

how to get there?

It's only a half-hour drive to Banchory from Aberdeen. Head southwest on A9013/Union St toward St Catherine's Wynd and pick up the A93. Follow this for around 17 miles straight to the town centre.

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