The River Dee is a beautiful waterway which passes through Aberdeenshire, Scotland. Starting out in the dramatic Cairngorm Mountains, the river flows through the magnificent Dee Valley, past Ballater, Royal Deeside and Balmoral Castle, before eventually reaching its North Sea estuary at Aberdeen. Encompassing such a fine range of attractions, both natural and cultural, a trip to the River Dee could be the best short break Scotland has to offer!
Around the source of the River Dee in the Cairngorms, visitors will find a great variety of terrains, making this a popular destination for hikers. The original name of the mountains came from an old Celtic word meaning ‘the red hills’. The name will make sense when you visit at sunset, as the white granite cliffs and screes catch the sunlight, glowing red until late into the twilight. There are many different walking paths through the mountains, or alternatively, some easier routes which follow the Dee through the river valleys of Royal Deeside.
A number of nearby towns offer some great options for accommodation, as well as a wealth of other amenities. At settlements such as Ballater and Braemar, you’ll be able to find a healthy selection of bars, restaurants and shops, as well as cultural attractions such as museums.
Check into one of the many Ballater hotels for example, and you’ll be able to enjoy a number of exciting annual events, such as Victoria Day, and the Ballater Walking Festival. The town is also within close reach of Balmoral Castle – the official Scottish residence of The British Royal Family. The Castle itself is open to visits from the public between the months of April and July, and features a beautiful 49,000-acre estate, including lochs, forests and a well-tended, landscaped garden.
So, for some truly beautiful weekend breaks in the Scottish countryside, take a trip to the River Dee; from the Cairngorms as far as the city of Aberdeen, this beautiful waterway flows through some of the country’s leading tourist attractions.