Arbuthnott House and Gardens

Arbuthnott House and Gardens

Conducted tours round this famous property are available on certain days while the gardens are open all the year round.

For more details visit Arbuthnott House website 

Balmoral Castle

Balmoral Castle

Balmoral Castle has been the Scottish home of the Royal Family since it was purchased for Queen Victoria by Prince Albert in 1852, having been first leased in 1848.

It is situated on Royal Deeside 66 miles from Stonehaven.Open to the public from Thursday 1st April until Monday 31st July.

Daily from 10.00 a.m. until 5.00 p.m.
(last recommended admission 4.00 p.m.)
Admission Charges
Adults - £5.00
Seniors - £4.00
Children (5 to 16) - £1.00

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Caledonian Railway

Caledonian Railway




Tel:01356 622992

Visit Website

Crathes Castle

Crathes Castle

Some 3 miles east of Banchory and 14 miles from Stonehaven, this is a real fairytale castle - a definite must if you are in the area

For more information Go To Website

Drum Castle

Drum Castle

The oldest intact building in the care of the 
National Trust for Scotland,  
Drum Castle was, from 1323 to 1975,
the home of the Irvine Family.
Situated in the world famous Castle Country
of Northeast Scotland and standing at the
gates to Royal Deeside on a ridge
overlooking the River Dee 10 miles from the heart of the Granite City, Aberdeen

Please visit our Website

How to contact us

Phone     (+44)1330 811204
Fax:        (+44)1330 811962

or by mail:

Alec Gordon
The Property Manager
Drum Castle & Gardens
AB31 5EY

Dunnottar Castle

Dunnottar Castle

Dunnottar Castle is a dramatic and evocative ruin. As you wander around the extensive buildings you are almost surrounded by sea with gulls and other seabirds wheeling and screaming around the cliffs below you. If the outline is a little familiar, this may be because Dunnottar Castle was the location for the 1990 film version of Hamlet starring Mel Gibson.

Public Transport is available from the south end of Barclay Street in Stonehaven.

A Number  113 Bus is available every 20 minutes which drops you off where the road from the Castle joins the Coastal Road from Stonehaven to Inverbervie. The castle entrance is only a few minutes walk from there.

Opening Times


10am to sunset (or 5pm whichever is earlier)

Weather Permitting

Closed Christmas and Boxing Day and 1st and 2nd January


Visit Website

Dunnottar Woods

Dunnottar Woods

Dunnottar Woods form part of the Forestry Commission holdings within the Moray & Aberdeenshire Forest District. As part of the Commission’s wider remit to develop multi- purpose forestry throughout Great Britain, it has enlisted the support of local communities to assist in the management of certain woods as a means to help secure their future as recreational woodland and wildlife habitats.

The holdings at Dunnottar are managed in this manner with the assistance of Dunnottar Woodland Park Association.

Since its formation in 1994, Dunnottar Woodland Park Association has engaged in a real working partnership with the Forestry Commission Scotland, which has seen positive and active community involvement in the management of the woods to the clear benefit of both locals and visitors to the town alike.

Membership of the Association comprises individuals and organisations that have a commitment to the development and safeguarding of the woods for the benefit of the local community both now and indeed for future generations.

To date, this commitment has seen real ‘hands-on’ involvement by individuals and groups of all ages in a number of iniatives such as litter clearance, path construction’ Gallow Hill’ Ice House restoration projects, a woodland walks leaflet, photographic record, bird survey, bird-box project, vegetation survey, signage programme, tree planting and picnic and recreation developments at Glasslaw and Quarry car park areas.

The work of the Association is ongoing and a range of works to further improve what is one of Stonehaven’s most attractive assets has been planned. These include Lady Kennedy’s Bath restoration project through the development of paths for disabled access.

For more information click here

Fettercairn Distillery

Fettercairn Distillery

Why not visit the Fettercairn Distillery which is just a few miles south of Stonehaven.

This was originally founded in 1824 and reconstructed after damage 1887 - 1890.

Guided tours available May - September.

Adults: £2  Children: Free

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Fossil Over 420 Million Years Old

Fossil Over 420 Million Years Old

Major Discovery in Stonehaven

Stonehaven featured as a main news item on the National News during the last week of January
2004, because of wee beastie found in Cowie.

An amateur fossil hunter from Kemnay,in Aberdeenshire, bus driver Michael Newman, had an amazing discovery.

He found a fossil of a millipede, which is estimated by experts to be around 420 million years old, and it is reckoned that if it had not been for the earth movement on the Highland Fault Line, he would not have found what is the oldest exposure on the globe for a terrestial ecosystem.

The Highland fault-line passes from along the Skatie Shore in Stonehaven in the east, to Helensburgh in the west, dividing Scotland into the Highlands and the Lowlands.

Mr Newman said that when he found the fossil it was fairly well preserved especially its legs.

He sent it to Dr Lyall Anderson at the National Museum of Scotland.
Together with experts at Yale University in USA, scientists in Edinburgh spent months examining the creature and dating it using moss spores trapped in the rock with it.

Before it could be revealed to the world, 3 years of research and review were undertaken.

A scientific paper published in January 2004 describes how this tiny creature was found to have spiracles (air breathing holes), evidence that life had crawled out of the primordial swamp to live and breathe air on dry land and this is thought to be the oldest evidence ever discovered of life on earth.

Mr Newman now has the honour of having his name included in the title of this ancient creepy crawly, now known as Pneumodesmusnewmani.

Why call it that? you ask.

Well according to Dr Lyall Anderson, curator of invertebrate paleontology at National Museum of
Scotland, 'pneumo' was from the greek word for air and 'desmus' meant millipede.
Stonehaven is also the birthplace of RW Thomson, the inventor of the pneumatic tyre and that was
why it was included and of course 'newmani' was in honour of Mr Newman.

Cowie harbour,has plenty of potential left. Newman is convinced there could be early eurypterids, or scorpion-related creatures, which may be found to possess breathing systems.

The site near Stonehaven is well known in fossil collecting circles for its abundance of arthropods, spidery animals such as sea scorpions, but all are aquatic animals as opposed to air breathing specimens like the Pneumodesmusnewmani.

Fowlsheugh RSPB Reserve

Fowlsheugh RSPB Reserve

This is one of the most exciting and largest seabird colony on mainland Britain, with something in the order of 160,000 birds.

These comprise large numbers of Kittiwake and Guillemot, with smaller numbers of Fulmar, Puffin, Razorbill, Shag, Herring Gull and the odd Great Black-backed Gull.

The best time to visit is between late April, when the birds return, to the end of July, when the chicks start to leave.

Other times of year are not productive. Getting there involves going to Crawton, a small village just south of Stonehaven, a few miles south of Aberdeen.

By Car

Taking the coast road south from Stonehaven, Crawton is signposted to a B road off to left. From the village (which has a small car park) walk north along the cliffs for about 1/2km to reach the start of the reserve. alternatively, sometimes a boat leaves from Stonehaven harbour for a short tour around the bottom of the seabird cliffs (well worth doing to see the birds close-up, and swimming underwater).

By Bus

Hourly bus services run from Stonehaven, stopping at the Crawton turn-off (one-mile walk to the reserve).

By Rail

From Stonehaven train station, take the A92 southbound for 3 miles (4.8 km), then take the turning on the left signed for Crawton. The reserve is at the end of this road.

The Grassic Gibbon Centre

The Grassic Gibbon Centre

he Grassic Gibbon Centre is located in north-east Scotland, 2 hours north of Edinburgh and 1/2 hour south of Aberdeen

The Centre is devoted to the life and times of Lewis Grassic Gibbon who grew up in Arbuthnott, Kincardineshire and was later to become one of Scotland's best known authors.

Only 10/15 minutes drive from Stonehaven and there is an excellent coffee shop.

For more information see website

Montrose Basin Wild Life Centre

Montrose Basin Wild Life Centre

Montrose Basin is the 750 hectare enclosed estuary of the South Esk river. Virtually untouched by industrial development and pollution, the Basin provides a rich feeding ground for thousands of resident and migrant birds.

It is situated approximately 25 miles south of Stonehaven on the coast.

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Radio Controlled Car Racing

Radio Controlled Car Racing

Stonehaven & Distric Radio  Car Club have a dedicated Race Track for 1/10th Scale Radio Control Cars (mostly Electric Powered), and race on the second Sunday of every month, March to October at Mineralwell Park, Stonehaven.

275m permanent outdoor on-road model racing circuit, one of biggest in Europe which has just undergone a huge revamp, thousands spent on upgrades.
All new members welcome, we are a very friendly crowd.
We run 1/10th scale electric touring cars, they reach speeds of up to 60mph and average 17 seconds per lap (VERY fast!).
We are holding an international competition on June 3rd/4th where 100's of racers will descend on Stonehaven to race.
We have a wireless network capability for wireless results where drivers can get results on their laptops at the pit table.
We have electronic digital lap timing and full PA system.

Check for calendar of events and lots of images.

The Tolbooth Museum

The Tolbooth Museum

The Stonehaven Tolbooth is thought to have been founded by George Keith, 5th Earl Marischal (c. 1553–1623), with the original purpose of the rectangular building to be used as a storehouse. In 1600, an Act of Parliament provided that the building become a tolbooth text of that act reads: "The shiref of the shiref-dome of Kincardin in all time cum sall sit and hald their courtis at Stanehyve".

After 1624, the town business functions were conducted on the upper level of the Stonehaven Tolbooth, with the ground floor was used as the prison. By 1685, there are further accounts of the Stonehaven Tolbooth functioning as the seat of justice for all of Kincardineshire (the former shire of this district that was eventually subsumed into Aberdeenshire). When new county government facilities were built in the year 1767, the Stonehaven tolbooth reverted to its earlier humble use as a storehouse.

In 1963, the Tolbooth was in need of restoration, which resulted in the present day use configuration of a local history museum on the ground floor and a destination restaurant on the above level. The museum holds relics dating to the Iron Age, as well as memorabilia from the eras defined by the Tolbooth’s existence.

It was closed by Aberdeenshire Council officials in March 2011 and all the artefacts were removed as the authority needed to cut £58million from its budget over the next two years.

A group of volunteers from Stonehaven Town Partnership, Stonehaven and District Community Council and the local heritage society revived the facility however and it reopened in May 2011

Pat Deans, of Findon, was the 1000th visitor to pass through the door on 25th June 2011

Despite reaching this milestone the visitor numbers will fall short of 2010 unless more volunteers come forward.

Tolbooth committee member Phil Mills-Bishop said: “We marked it with a certificate and it was good and yes it’s an achievement but we want to do better than that. We want to open at least six days a week and need to double our volunteer force.

“Like in all things there are some issues we have to address. Nothing is as a simple as it appears. It’s only through the work of a small group that things are progressing. That small group can’t carry the burden all the time and we have to get more volunteers in the museum.

“We’re committed to opening three days a week, but that’s not good enough. Look at all the people we are missing when the doors are closed.

“Although we’re doing well on footfall on days we’re open, we’re still going to fall well short of the total that went through the door last year under Aberdeenshire Council and if we’re trying to prove we can run the facility better than they can we have to do better.

“We have to improve the accessibility of the museum and that comes back to staffing and the volunteers.

“We have had a lot of feedback about the fantastic job we’re doing but when we ask people to come and get involved for three hours on an afternoon that’s much more difficult.

“There must be people out there - particularly the young - who find themselves unemployed in the current climate or they are possibly not sure what they want to do, have the summer free, and want to put something on their CV. We can give them that opportunity. Also people who are retired have time and professional skills we can use.”

Mr Mills-Bishop explained volunteers would have the opportunity to gain experience in till work, artefact handling, health and safety practices and interacting with visitors.

“Volunteers with language skills would be particularly useful,” he added.

The museum currently opens from 1.30-4.30pm Friday to Sunday.

Check out Summer Residencies at the Tolbooth

Anyone interested in volunteering at the museum should contact Gordon Ritchie at Connons of Stonehaven on 01569 762971.

Stonehaven Recreation Grounds Club

Stonehaven Recreation Grounds Club

Recreation Grounds,



AB39 2RD

Tel: 01569 765470


The Stonehaven Recreation Grounds are situated close to the Beach front on North East side of the town just off Beach Road.

The grounds incorporate

  • 5 Tennis Courts
  • 2 Outdoor Bowling Greens
  • Putting Green
  • Indoor Bowling Stadium cafe
  • Meeting Hall
  • Two Club Bars
  • Caravan Park

The grounds are open to the public and equipment can be hired for pay and play tennis, bowling and putting.

All major payment cards are accepted.

There are four clubs incorporated within the grounds. You can apply for membership which would include the following;

The Stonehaven Tennis Club

  • Five floodlit all weather artificial courts (prebookable)
  • Professional LTA qualified coaching team (All Levels)
  • Male & Female changing rooms

For more information vist

Direct Email -


Stonehaven Men's Bowling Club

The outdoor bowling greens are open from April through to September from

  • 10am to noon
  • 2pm to 4pm
  • 6pm to 9pm (weather permitting)

You can come an play with friemds  as the outdoor green is open to the public( Most of the time).

The team competitions are for our members but there is a HAT night (organised bounce game) on a Monday night at 6.15pm and most weekdat mornings at 10am. Non members are welcome to join in with these.

If you wish to become a member, you can play bowls as competively as you like or you can play "friendlies".

The ladies club meet on a Tuesday and Thursday afternoon at 1.45pm. Ladies and girls of all ages are most welcome.

Equipment and coaching is available for all new members.

Members are eligible to play in all competitions, friendly games and Aberdeen and District games.

Some Club members have represented Stonehaven at National level.

Please visit our website for Frequently Asked Questions on

Email Direct -


Indoor Bowling Club

The indoor bowling green is open all year round from 9am to 9pm

From October through to March there are quite a few league games on but there are usually spare rinks


The Premises

With its cafe meeting hall and two bars, we can with prior notice cater for private functions and coach parties (club restrictions apply)

Please note there will be an exhibition of work from local artists on display in the meeting hall from Thursday 14th Aug 2014.

For more information on Stonehaven Recreation Grounds

Please Call 01569 765470

or visit any of the web links above

We look forward to meeting you