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Leaving the city behind you, Dundee is the ideal gateway to the county of Angus
Based on the east coast of Scotland, the city of Dundee is known as Scotland’s sunniest city. This city might be smaller than some other popular destinations such as Edinburgh, but its coastal position, rich and fascinating history, and convenient proximity to some of the best beauty and wonder the county of Angus has to offer makes it a must-visit location. Named a UNESCO City of Design, Dundee is known for its modern and traditional art, as well as for being home to some spectacular museums celebrating its nautical history. It is even possible to view Captain Scott’s Antarctic ship and feel the spirit of adventure that still thrums through the Dundee streets. Strolling the city is the perfect way to take in the varied architecture, and thriving food and drink scene, and you can even visit the city’s observatory – the first purpose-built public observatory to be opened in the entirety of Britain.
Leaving the city behind you, Dundee is the ideal gateway to the county of Angus. Wild yet accessible, Angus has something to offer every visitor. From rugged coastlines to craggy mountains and sweeping glens, Angus is bursting with natural beauty, castles, and sites where some of the most important moments in Scottish history took place.
Whether you are seeking a bustling yet compact city with culture and chic bars or somewhere to hike, take in the scenery, and spot a range of wildlife, then visiting Dundee and Angus is sure to tick all your boxes.
Bringing the city and the countryside together, Dundee and Angus are known for their diversity and beauty, with the incredible V&A being one of the main attractions in Dundee itself. You can also visit historical sites like Broughty Castle Museum and the HMS Unicorn warship. Rural Angus is ideal for those who love hiking, history, nature, and even watersports.
While today Dundee is the fourth largest city in Scotland, it only became a major town around 1180 when it began to be recognised for its strong trading opportunities – though it had been occupied since ancient times. After becoming a walled city in 1545, the port city expanded during the Industrial Revolution and became widely known for jute (a kind of fibre), jam (marmalade specifically, said to have been invented in Dundee by Janet Keiller in 1797), and journalism, thanks to the publishing turned media company DC Thomson & Co. being established in 1905.
The county of Angus, meanwhile, was a province, to begin with, before becoming a sheriffdom and a county by the name of Forfarshire.
The name was changed in 1928. Bordering a range of Scottish areas such as Aberdeenshire, Perthshire, and Kincardineshire, Angus has long been considered as the birthplace of independent Scotland. This is because Arbroath Abbey was the location where the Declaration of Arbroath was signed, giving Scotland status as an independent country in 1320. This long and storied history can be seen today in iconic sites such as the Bell Rock Lighthouse and Glamis Castle, as well as the famous Abbey itself. In more modern times, Angus is known as the birthplace of Peter Pan author JM Barrie, whose childhood home in Kirriemuir can still be visited, while Dundee, the earliest official city in the whole of Scotland, became strongly associated with its maritime connections, which can be seen in ships and museums around the city today.
The Angus Coastal Route allows you to travel along the coastline of Dundee up to the Angus area. You can also use bus services around Dundee and Angus, with timetable information available on Traveline for easier exploring. The A92 or A90 roads take you to Angus, or travel to Montrose by train.
Getting to Dundee
Dundee is very well connected, and the best place to base yourself for easy access to Angus. You can travel to Dundee via train both locally and nationally, by coach from various parts of the UK, or fly into nearby Aberdeen, Glasgow and Edinburgh. Driving is also a good choice.
When to go
There is plenty to enjoy in Dundee all year round, but if you wish to explore the rich and beautiful countryside that Angus has to offer in good conditions, the summer months are generally preferred. The weather is normally at its best in July and August for outdoor activities like hiking.
Where to stay
In both the city of Dundee and the Angus area there are a lot of different places you can choose to stay. With quaint B&Bs and guesthouses overlooking the sea, historic self-catering stables, stylish quayside hotels in Dundee and a rural bothy or cottage, there is something for everyone.
Eating & drinking
The Tayberry Restaurant in Broughty Ferry serves modern Scottish cuisine, while you can enjoy similarly Scottish fare in the whitewashed Drovers Inn in Forfar. You can find flavours beyond Scotland, too, with Italian and tapas restaurants in the city. Make sure to try Dundee cake, Dundee marmalade and Angus beef!
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