Well... what can I say about Stonehaven? I know the town inside out as I have lived here for more than 20 years.
Stonehaven is an expanding town with a population of roughly 10, 247 in 2006 and is located 16 miles south of Aberdeen city. Stonehaven has been a tourist town ever since the 1930s and today attracts tourist's from all over the world. There are a number of attractions in Stonehaven which I will mention later in the review. These attractions include Dunnottar Castle, Stonehaven Heated Outdoor Pool, Harbour etc.
Many resident's in Stonehaven commute daily to neighbouring towns and cities such as Aberdeen for work and social activities. Aberdeen hosts a number of Oil and Gas companies as it is the Oil Capital in Europe.
* Accommodation *
There are a number of places for Tourist's and Visitor's to stay when visiting Stonehaven. Some of the hotels in Stonehaven include Station Hotel and Heugh Hotel etc and there is a wide variety of Bed and Breakfast's too. As well as this, there is a Caravan park open during the summer months.
* Attractions / Shops *
There are other attractions in Stonehaven such as the many Pubs that line Stonehaven harbour and the town centre. There are also two clubs in Stonehaven which are open during the weekend and can be quite popular. There is a Golf Club in Stonehaven which is popular with Locals and Visitor's to Stonehaven.
Every Summer, Stonehaven has a Fee 'n' Market which hosts many stalls from bakery to clothing. This is a fun day out for many locals. There is also a fireworks display around about Bonfire time and of course the world famous Fire Ball display which attracts thousands of Visitor's every year.
There are many shops in Stonehaven too, however, only one clothing outlet. Most of the shops include bakeries and convenience stores.
Outdoor Swimming Pool
Stonehaven Outdoor Swimming Pool is located by the beach in Stonehaven and is the only art deco, Olympic sized, fully filtrated sea water, open aired swimming pool with a lovely temperature of 29 degrees! The pool opens at the beginning of June each year and closes towards the end of summer. The pool also has catering facilities, sun lounges for those that are brave, a stage for swimming event's, inflatable slide, big slide in the deep end and a range of floats and inflatables. As well as this, the outdoor pool is situated next to the two local caravan parks, café, amusement centre, park, beach, putting course, paddling pool and is a 5 minute walk in to the town centre. There are also male and female changing rooms with lockers and showers.
The pool often does "midnight swim" sessions once a week which is held from roughly 10pm. This is extremely popular with young people and tends to be very busy.
The price varies but roughly costs £3.50 per adult, £2.00 per child / concession and £9.00 for a family ticket. The midnight swim tends to be a pound or two more expensive than a normal swim.
Dunnottar Castle is less than two miles south of Stonehaven on the east coast of Scotland. The historic ruin was used in Mel Gibson's film version of Hamlet in 1990 and also to the Earls Marischals family who were one of the most powerful families around at the time.
The castle is extremely popular with tourist's and locals every year. The castle was built in the 14th century and is damaged from Cromwell's canons but still intact. You can view the castle from outside and inside. Unfortunately access for disabled people is limited due to the footpaths and there are toilets on site.
It is advisable that you check the opening times before wondering up to the castle if you want a tour inside as different seasons have different times. However, you can still access the castle grounds when the castle is closed.
Price: £5.00 per Adult and £1.00 per Child under 16
* Schools / Housing *
There are three local primary schools, many nurseries and one high school in Stonehaven.
The housing in Stonehaven is constantly being developed, with new flats and houses being developed rapidly.
After living here for many years, I don't think I'd like to stay anywhere else unless it was locally. The people are friendly and the atmosphere in Stonehaven is nice. There are things to do not only in Stonehaven, but around Stonehaven too. Travelling to nearby cities such as Aberdeen and Dundee doesn't take too long and both are great for shopping. Stonehaven also has a railway and bus service, so if you haven't got your own transport, travelling is still easy to do. Many tourist's enjoy their stay in Stonehaven and the surroundings. One thing I would change though is the weather!!
I hope this review has been useful for those ever interested in visiting Stonehaven.