Home Tour - Aberdeenshire Style

Grab your wellies and a walking stick as I traipse you around
Abberdeenshire County Scotland,
(Siorrachd Obar Dheathain in celtic)
and to the city of granite & oil, Aberdeen.
Today we are taking in the sights in the eyes of a home-buyer.

Aberdeenshire County is a quiet countryside that is home to 35 historic castles (although depending on which website you google, that number fluctuates like my bathroom scale).

According to 'Rampart Scotland" there are 5000 castles and country houses in Great Britain with 770 in Scotland.

One royal castle is picturesquely seated in what is called 'Royal Deeside'. This c1390 wee country castle named Balmoral is the summer retreat for Queen Elizabeth, her family, and her pack of Welsh Corgi's & Land Rovers. Do you recall the scene from the 2006 movie "The Queen" when Helen as Queen Elizabeth locked eyes with a huge long horned steer in a tender moment...'that' was the grounds of Balmoral.

scenes from The Queen

There is a bounty of events that take place each year in Royal Deeside including the not to be missed Braemar Gathering. Colloquially known as The Games, the c1826 competitive element is a major attraction in its own right, but when combined with the spectacle of Highland dancers and pipers and the colour and grandeur of the Scottish scenery which forms their backdrop, Highland Games become a must on any visitor's Scotland itinerary.

The Braemar Gathering is held the first Saturday in September in the highlands village of Braemar just 58 miles (93KC) west of Aberdeen. For the last 150 years the Gathering has been attended by members of the Royal Family; so all you Royal watchers would find this a titillating event. For a list of Royal Deeside events and history visit here.

While mountain biking in the highlands surrounding the Balmoral Castle, my brother in law Raymond ran into the Duchess of Cornwall (Prince Charles' wife, Camilla Parker Bowles). She was out for a brisk stroll with her dogs. She spoke kindly to him & Raymond told me she was quite "lovely". I do think he meant her personality don't you?

A few Aberdonian notables are William Dyce the artist, Thomas Blake Glover the founder of Mitsubishi, musician Annie Lennox (her father worked with my husband at the Hal Russell shipyard) & Bertie Charles Forbes of the Forbes Publishing Empire.

In my humble opinion Aberdeen and it's neighboring villages are often an over site to tourists visiting bonny Scotland. More tourists are inclined to visit the 'weegee's, (people of Glasgow) or Edinburgh or to catch a glimpse of the ever eluding Nessie of the chilly waters of Loch Ness.

As the momentum builds about our impending move to Aberdeen, so does my elation and trepidation. Once I begun researching houses and flats and delved deeper into the history about this imperial country, the country of my husbands birth, the angst subsides.

I keep in mind the one thing ya'all (that's my adoptive Texan drawl slipping in there) have taught me;

"if it's meant to happen it will happen"
Whit's fur ye'll no go by ye;

So without further a'do, let my tour-guide in black leather (Mr. Graham Milne of the Gordon Clan, a.k.a. the husband) give you a tour of the rental flats and a few ''but & a ben's" (cottages) for sale in Aberdeenshire and the city of Aberdeen, Scotland.

If you see one that takes your fancy, I just may know a savvy Realtor® (Estate Agent) to assist you with your purchase.

even living in the railcar wouldn't be half bad if he had heat?

Balgonie house - Ballater




Queens Road in Aberdeen

Mackie Place - Aberdeen

the river Don view

Dee Street - Aberdeen

Mar Castle - Midmar

1550 Pitfichie Castle - Valley of Don



So if we buy this lovely, do you think we should remodel?

I leave you with one Scottish Proverb & then I do think we all deserve a
pint after that long tour.

"Daylicht will peep throu a smaa hole."

{go forth & live responsibly}
wear a kilt -let the breezes flow

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image & research credits; findaproperty.com; panoramio.com; mendkent.dk; booking.com; wikipedia.org; mark.chambers@flickr; amk@flickr; coulombic@flickr; firstfoot.com


James said...

Very nice photos. I hope to see Scotland someday. Until then I'll just enjoy wonderful posts like yours!

Lisa Porter said...

Whaaaaat!!! I need to visit you more often. A big move? No wonder you said you can't sleep!
These are all charming....well ok, a few are a bit questionable, like the one with no roof.
I leave you now as I have much reading to do here to catch up with my dear Deb.

Karena said...

Fascinating background, history of these too too wonderful properties. It was a great tour!

Art by Karena

Julie@beingRUBY said...

FAbulous post Deb
Looks like the move is still on the cards.. I must say... those homes in the last half are just so charming... beautiful homes and scenery.. definitely a plus!!! .. Good luck with the search..... glad it is starting to feel exciting and less angst.. and the good thing for all of us is... you can blog no matter where you are.... perhaps we'll get to see some fabs pics too.... Take care Deb and good luck.. xxx Julie

debra@dustjacket said...

Fabulous post, I loved reading it and seeing the pic's.

So there are fun times ahead....sounds interesting!

Where's that pint....
xxxx DJ
ps mmm I'm thinkin' remodelling may be on the cards for that last one honey ;)

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

Oh my Lord, you're killing me!
It's painful to feel envy this early in the morning.

AJ at OFLBlog said...

First and foremost, Mr. Milne - hubba hubba..............back to my reality - that last place in Inverurie is THE place - I know that it needs "a little work" but you could make it your own, I know you could, and the name of the place is just super - I love the way it gives my tongue a workout! Just kidding but then, with 770 castles in Scotland, you should be able to find SOMETHING!!! oxoxoxox AJ

A Gift Wrapped Life said...

So exciting to be looking for a house in Scotland......I think this a your great adventure. Enjoy!

Anonymous said...

ha, you live in Aberdeen? wow, my cousin lives there with his wife now since 2 years or so, hehe! he had a photography exhibition someplace there as well! dearest greets!


A Perfect Gray said...

a fantastic look...

Ciara Brehony said...

Oh my. What a post! I know it's all very familiar and similar to where I am sitting right now, but I think I'm going to have to visit Scotland soon...

Barbara said...

My daughter and I drove all over Scotland a few years ago, but you're right, we didn't go to Aberdeen. Mostly, it rained when we were there, but we stayed in several castles and felt quite elegant.

I adored some of your houses (barring the railroad car and a couple other dubious offerings) and one of the kitchens (Banff)was divine. Mackie Place was charming as was the one in Aberdeen.
Hope you are now looking forward to your adventure!

Averill said...

Ah now you have me itching to make a detour to Aberdeenshire when Dave and I go to Scotland next month (plan was to split time between Inverness/highlands and Edinburgh -- one trip to Glasgow in 2002 was enough for me!). Spent a week in Perth in '02 also and it's a lovely and quaint town. There's just something haunting and magical about Scotland...and the people...well they're probably the Texans of the UK, so I think you'll fit in just fine Deb. :)

Red Boots said...

You're moving to Aberdeenshire? How exciting! I went to university in Aberdeen, and all in all spent about 8/9 years living there (I loved it so much). Boyfriend's parents live in Aberdeenshire, and all my best friends live in Aberdeen, so I'm up there frequently. Was just there at the weekend. It's wonderful - you'll love it. If you need any help or advice on places then just let me know!

ps: the second photo isn't in Aberdeenshire. It's in Aberdeen city, on the university campus. A truly beautiful part of the city.

BonjourRomance said...

SO many choices...no worries you and the tour guide/husband will find the perfect place. Enjoy the adventure, there's nothing quite like it. Besides as long as the two of you are together the rest is icing on the cake!!
And that is my pep talk of the day!! :)
Take care and bonne chance,

Brabourne Farm said...

How fabulous to be house hunting in this gorgeous part of the world - there's something so very special about Scotland. Thank you for this lovely tour and good luck with the search. Leigh

Anonymous said...

Dreamy, dreamy, dreamy! This is exactly why I want to go to Scotland! Stop by, Deb, I'm giving away a gold mirror. :)

annechovie said...

Wow, it looks beautiful there, Deb. I wish you all the best with your move and I hope you will continue to blog. xo

Renée Finberg said...

get the one with the red stove....
and don't forget to KEEP the one dressed in black leather.
oh yeah.

you two must be quite a hot couple!!!


North of 25A said...

What an interesting post and how exciting for you!

Gwen Driscoll said...

How fun to contemplate a move to such a gorgeous place! I had so much fun looking at all these wonderful and beautiful images. Thank you for your kind remarks on RHS. You're just the best!

Lisa Borgnes Giramonti said...

Balgonie House is beyond gorge. I'm late to this party, but wow...you're moving to Scotland? I'll be there this summer -- we are renting a country house in Gargunnock (v. near Stirling) for a week in August.
It's our 4th time staying there -- as a result, Scotland has become quite close to my heart. Loving your blog as well...will add you to my sidebar asap! xxx

Punctuation Mark said...

Those castles are amazing... I can only imagine how difficult it would be to maintain them... have a great weekend!

My Dog-Eared Pages said...

How great to move to Scotland!! I stayed for ten days once in a wonderful castle - Birkhill Castle in Cupar Fife, when a friend rented it for his birthday. It was incredible!! ox

Anonymous said...

Dahling, you know what I am thinking? Can you imagine what the heating bill is going to be???????????? Ahhhhhgh! I dont live that far north, but let me tell you, it gets freakin cold in scottland!
Have a fabulous weekend my dear!
*kisses* HH

lisa golightly said...

This is beyond exciting ! You should definitely take whatever space and give it the dumbwit treatment. Take me with you ! I would be happy in a closet in any one of those choices ! kisses, lisa

BonBon Rose Girls Kristin said...

Why do you always have to make me want to travel?

Millie said...

Oh this is so SPOOKY Deb! Our little village here in the Adelaide Hills was named Stirling after Sir Edward Stirling who came from Braemar. Our house has Braemar Terrace running along the tennis court side & our property is actually called 'Invercauld' after the valley Royal Deeside & Balmoral sit in!! So this post is right up my alley albeit on the other side of the world! Three degrees & all that!
Millie ^_^

Splenderosa said...

Deb, this post is just wonderful. Home is where ever your family is, and you have a beautiful family, beginning with YOU. Your husband is as gorgeous as Sean Connery...so you & the kids go where his work takes him and smile. I owe you a long long email, which I'll work on. Love you, Marsha

La Petite Gallery said...

Question the last house with no roof? In Ireland, I was told if the roof is off you don't pay taxes. Is that true in England?
A fellow Texan
I liked the AberDeen house with Garage.

Janet said...

I love the blue doors and trim. What great photos, beautiful. Great kitchens too.

Bumpkin on a Swing said...

Okay the bumpkin must keep it real here because you are such a darling. Someone like myself, can only dream of places so grand. Although I spent time in Europe 20 years ago, these experiences are few and far between. However, because of you today, and others who I have come to adore, there are times that I feel so wordly, knowledged and wise. Today is one of those days. I read every word, at least twice, and I studied each image for the character behind them. I feel that I truly know Aberdeen/Aberdeenshire. I have a million questions but will do my own private research. The meadows are certainly dream like. I can see myself running my own dogs amongst them. I often tell my international blog friends to show me their world. My friend, thank you for sharing with me from the bottom of my bumpkin heart, for you have done exactly that!

Bumpkin on a Swing said...

Tell me on your sidebar. Who are two of your most favorite you have listed here. I want to explore even more. Do you love Nate Berkus or what, so much more than Oprah's designer to his man. Have you ever seen the Joshua Tree in the entrance of his home. I find it amazing as far as art is concerned. His underwear drawers are the tidiest ever, I try this with the Captain, and he destroys it in a day. I would almost say he stirs it.

Julia Christie said...

Lovely to meet you and already excited about following you...So funny, I grew up in Stanwood and have an ex that was from Snohomish - bit of a sports star in his day...Can't believe you are moving to scotland! I am that envious! Yes, we are waiting with baited breath to see if our flight will go or be cancelled, but at this point I have no problem waiting. I don't want to fly into that mess particularly.

Thanks again for stopping by and S M I L E S!

Julia Christie said...

It was a long time ago, but his name was Mark Ceruti...Probably never heard of him, but he was quite the thing I understand in High School there...
I see a lot of gaelic? in your posts...I will be needing a few quotes for the chapters of my book that are set in Ireland...Any interest? I was planning on a little research while there, but that will likely have to wait. Sigh.


Charlotta Ward said...

Scotland lovely Scotland!
I used to live in Dundee - a bit further south of Aberdeen, but have been to quite a few of the castles in the area. There are many!
I was lucky enough to get private guided tours by some of the owners of the castles as I called 'out of season'.
Many fantastic tales and stories about great families, tragic events and scary ghosts.. :)

Thanks for bringing back the memories.

xx Charlotta

Acanthus and Acorn said...

Scotland....men in kilts...often?! An amazing post and some amazing news!!! I have always wanted to visit this country. Any pictures of it's countryside make me swoon. Promise you will post on every detail possible!

Haven and Home said...

Oh this is doing nothing for my desire to go somewhere fabulous soon!

Jacqueline @ HOME said...

Dear Deb,
Just back from Edinburgh and loved every minute. Fabulous city, wonderful things to see and such lovely people. You have been, so you know, but, I know that you will love living in Scotland if you go and will have no trouble settling in.
I love ALL of the houses that you have shown....even the one without a roof...perfect for renovation !
Lots of love to you Deb. XXXX

Marsi @ The Cottage Cheese said...

It's settled, I'm moving to Aberdeen too :) We can tour the countryside and castles and visit the pubs for a pint. I'll take up painting and growing vegetables for market and live in a tiny stone cottage. Seriously though, it is so beautiful there! The landscape reminds me a lot of the Cumberland Plateau (in fact, I've heard that Scotland looks a lot like East Tennessee). Thanks so much for taking us on a castle and house tour with you. Oh, and your husband is a hottie!

Haute World said...

So tell me... which castle will you be getting now? ;-) And no, I don't believe you'd pick the last one...

I know that if you end up moving there, you'll love it. Sometimes a change is a good thing and being Queen Deb dressed in tartan sounds like a good idea to me!

SpryOnTheWall said...

Lovely, lovely, lovely! I'm so excited about your move, what an adventure! So happy for you all. My textile design professor in college was Scottish, I can still hear him say my name "Jennifer" and "plaid" in his accent :o)

Sanity Fair said...

LOVE Scotland! These are such great pics - heart the kelts most of all.
-Sanity Fair