The Best Places to Live in Aberdeenshire

With a panoramic landscape of rolling green hills and towering mountains to the west and beaches of golden sands and dramatic cliffsides to the east, Aberdeen is a feast for the eyes and tonic for the soul, with plenty of adventures to be had for families of all ages.

Peppered with quaint coastal towns, rich historic villages and one of Scotland’s most exciting cities, Aberdeenshire has something on offer for everyone – spend your weekends exploring the hundreds of attractions and hidden gems sprinkled across the region, or get your adrenaline fix with the countless outdoor sports options on offer. For wildlife lovers, discover some of Scotland’s most diverse and elusive wildlife, from rare seabirds to dolphin pods and majestic stags, all only a short drive away from Aberdeenshire’s most popular locations. 

With so much to see and do in Aberdeenshire, it’s a great place to consider settling down. But where should you hang your hat? Join us as we delve into some of the region’s most attractive places to live.

Aberdeen City

Scotland’s third biggest city and one of the most architecturally distinctive places in Europe (according to The Scotsman), Aberdeen is a seaside city with a lot of character. Walk its cobbled streets and admire the city’s unique Gothic design and granite buildings before stopping at one of the countless cafes, restaurants or bars serving local cuisine and award-winning international fare. 

Once refreshed, whet your appetite for culture in the city’s many art galleries and museums commemorating its rich history and the limitless talent of Aberdonian artists. Then, as the sun sets, take the family for a stroll through Old Aberdeen before finishing the evening with a touch of live music. With a bustling student population, ample shopping opportunities and activities to keep the whole family entertained, Aberdeen is a great city to call home.

Aberdeen has fast and reliable transport links to Scotland’s other big cities, reaching Edinburgh and Glasgow by train, bus or car in under 2.5 hours. At the time of writing, the average house price in Aberdeen is £190,226.


The Victorian village of Ballater is nestled in the heart of the Royal Deeside area and sits to the east of the majestic Cairngorms National Park – making this hidden gem one of Scotland’s most scenic spots. Residents enjoy its cosy cafes, local eateries, stunning Victorian architecture and endless outdoor activities for nature lovers and adrenaline-chasers alike. 

Spend your weekend hiking, climbing, skiing and fishing on the River Dee, or tee off a quiet game at Ballater’s famous golf club. For fun day trips, bundle the whole family in the car and visit one of the Scottish Highland’s limitless attractions. With Balmoral Castle, Braemar Castle, Crathes Castle, and Craigievar Castle just a short car ride away (not to mention a number of national parks and lochs), there’s plenty to keep everyone occupied.

For those without cars, Ballater isn’t the most commutable village. Still, drivers can reach Edinburgh and Glasgow in under 3 hours by car, while Aberdeen is less than an hour away. At the time of writing, the average house price in Ballater is £247,702.


The picturesque harbour town of Stonehaven is situated just south of Aberdeen and is known for its bustling harbour of colourful leisure boats and sailing yachts, rich history (with museums and galleries aplenty) and varied wildlife. Visit the dramatic Dunnottar Castle, or take a walk to the spectacular cliffs sheltering the RSPB Fowlsheugh reserve, where 13,000 seabirds nestle in the spring and summer months.

Inject excitement into your New Year’s celebrations with Stonehaven’s famous Hogmanay ceremony, where the local community gathers to swing blazing fireballs above their heads to ward off spirits for the year ahead (and indulge in a few tipples, too). With plenty of green space, wildlife and fun activities for families of all ages, Stonehaven is a great place to settle for those looking for a life led quietly.

Reach Aberdeen by car, train or bus in less than 30 minutes, or grab a direct train to Edinburgh or Glasgow in under 3 hours for simple day trips to the big city. At the time of writing, the average house price in Stonehaven is £247,129.

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