Moving to Aberdeen
Aberdeen is the third largest city in Scotland. Lovingly named the 'Silver City' after its buildings made from granite. It is home to one of the oldest universities in the English speaking world, famous for its Highland Cattle and for nurturing unique Scottish past-times such a caber tossing.
Sandwiched between the rivers Dee and Don, Aberdeen boasts breathtaking, windswept coastlines. Golden sandy beaches alternate with dramatic granite outcrops, which are revered by local climbing enthusiasts. The area is also a mountain biker and hill walker’s paradise, and it won’t be long before you are coaxed into tackling a Munro (a Scottish mountain higher than 3,000 feet).
A micro-economy, owing to its oil reserves, Aberdeen is a bustling, cosmopolitan city and the growth engine of the North East. When it comes to dining out, Aberdeen spoils you with choice; along its cobblestone streets you can find Michelin star restaurants, trendy loft-style bistros and pubs serving hearty Irish stew, and champ.
The harsh North Sea climate drives locals indoors in the cold, dark winter months, giving rise to a thriving pub culture and a vibrant local music scene. The winter blues are easily chased away by the roaring open-hearth fires in traditional pubs with flagstone floors, where locals nurse a Glenfiddich (Whiskey) and tap their feet to lively Ceilidh bands. Whether moving here alone, in a couple or as a family, Aberdeen will not fail to please. Aberdonians are, warm, witty and genuinely interested individuals. The city’s vibrant arts scene, passion for the outdoors, strong urban infrastructure and excellent schools make this a very easy city in which to integrate.
What is special or unique about Aberdeen?
The famous Scottish Highlands - including Braemar Highland Games and Balmoral Castle - are easily accessible. Many other spectacular castles are close by.
What are a newcomer's first impressions when arriving in Aberdeen?
Expat residents of Aberdeen often comment on how friendly the local people are. The city itself has no congestion and is free of high rise buildings.
In addition to having a breathtaking coastal beach area, Aberdeen is surrounded by the renowned Scottish scenery.
Aberdeen has many shopping malls, a wide variety of entertainment, sport and leisure activities. In addition, the city has a vibrant music and arts scene. There is always something to do, a place to visit and a group to be part of
What is the local language?
English is most commonly used, although Gaelic is spoken in the north and west of Scotland (including the highlands and islands), as well as Scots, which is spoken in the lowlands.
How easily could I live in Aberdeen without knowing English?
It is strongly recommended that newcomers know at least some conversational English.
What are good things to remember in order to avoid offending the other residents of the city?
Scottish people have a fantastic sense of humour, and are not easily offended. However, keep in mind that a resident with a keen sense of Scottish pride will not be pleased if you refer to him or her as an Englishman or Englishwoman!
Overall, you will find Scottish people quick to befriend visitors from overseas, making them feel at home and a part of the community.
How might the local weather affect my daily life?
Aberdeen enjoys the four seasons. From May to October, warm weather arrives bringing along sunshine. From November to April, it is cooler with moderate rainfall -- which is necessary for the beautiful green countryside.
Apart from infrequent gales and strong winds, the country does not suffer from extreme weather or natural disasters.
Is there anything else I should know about the overall character of Aberdeen or its people?
Scottish people are very proud of their heritage -- often to the point of being very passionate about it.
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