Peterhead (Aberdeen), Scotland, United Kingdom
Located on the easternmost point of mainland Scotland, Peterhead has always been linked to the sea. It was founded in the late 16th century as a fishing port, and its harbor dates from 1593. The folkloric nickname for the town is the Blue Toon, supposedly because local fishermen traditionally wore blue worsted stockings. Fishing is still an important industry, although the historically important whaling trade is gone. Scottish whalers plied the seas from Greenland deep into the Antarctic, and many place names in the South Atlantic recall the Scots’ intrepid exploration of the region. Falkland, McMurdo, Weddell, the South Shetland Islands, Scotia Sea and dozens more bespeak the heritage. They sought whale oil to lubricate the Industrial revolution back home. Today petroleum from offshore wells fuels the economy of Scotland’s northeast, and supports tens of thousands of jobs in the region. The Maritime Heritage Centre recounts the story up to the present. Aberdeen, called the Granite City, is Scotland’s third largest city. It is a place of majestic stone buildings, gothic-turreted and spired, hewn from the local stone so richly laced with mica that it glitters like silver in the sunlight. The University of Aberdeen was founded in 1495 and is still one of Britain’s finest. The city’s parks and gardens have consistently secured it a place in the annual Britain in Bloom awards. Whether you choose to explore the beautiful old city, the spectacular natural splendors of Aberdeenshire or the area’s many traditional whisky distilleries, you will doubtless find plenty to enchant you on Scotland’s northeastern coast.