Around and About

Ballater Golf Club

Ballater is a real hub for many outdoor activities and cultural pursuits. People come from far and wide to enjoy many of the attractions the area has to offer. Some of the most popular are summarised below with some useful links.

Golf. Ballater has a beautiful 18 hole golf course, which hosts the ever popular Ballater golf week. 

Cycling. The scenery in Upper Deeside lends itself to wonderful off-road and on-road cycling. There are endless off-road tracks around the estates in the area and the flat roads that follow the course of the River Dee provide great opportunities for cyclists of all abilities to enjoy the countryside. Cycle hire is available at Cycle Highlands just beside the village green by Glen Muick Church.

Cycling near Balmoral with Lochnagar in the background

Hill Walking The many paths, both low and high level, that traverse the Cairngorms lead to some of the most wonderful walking that the UK has to offer. One notable hike is the Lochnagar track, leading to the summit of one of the most celebrated Munros, described by Lord Byron in 'Dark Lochnagar', HRH Prince Charles in the children's book 'The Old Man of Lochnagar' and many others. 

Climbing. The climbing fraternity are drawn to the spectacular cliffs of Lochnagar in summer and winter and can also be found enjoying testing their skills on the cliffs on the Pass o' Ballater.

Skiing. Ballater is ideally situated to take advantage of the ski stations of The Lecht (17 miles), and Glenshee (25 miles). Cairngorm Mountain is also within reach of Ballater, at around 50 miles by road via The Lecht.

Fishing. The variety of fishing available in the Upper Deeside area is very good indeed. The River Dee offers salmon and trout fishing in some of the most beautiful beats. There are also a number of natural and stocked lochs in the area. Permits are available locally.

Tullich Fishery, Braehead House, Tullich, By Ballater, Aberdeenshire. AB35 5SB 
Tel: 013397 55648

Highland Games Ballater hosts its own Highland Games on the 2nd Thursday in August. Several other well attended games occur throughout the summer months. These include Aboyne Highland Games, Tomintoul Highland Games and, of course, the Braemar Gathering, patroned and attended by the Royal Family. 

Ballater Victoria Week This ever popular festival culminates with the annual Highland Games. 

The Old Royal Station In the early days of the Royal family travelling to Balmoral, the Deeside Railway was used to transport the royal entourage from the Royal Yacht in Aberdeen to Ballater, from where they set off to their summer retreat at Balmoral. The station building now houses the tourist office, some gift shops and a Tea Room. It is well worth a visit to see the display, particularly if you intend visiting the nearby Balmoral Castle for a day out.

Balmoral Castle. The Highland Residence of the Royal Family is a visit not to be missed. The beautifully manicured estate and spectacular castle, set by the Dee and below Lochnagar are a fitting tribute to Victoria and Albert and their foresight in acquiring the estate, and also for the ongoing admiration of the Royal Family for this beautiful part of the country.

Tennis and Bowling. Three tennis courts and a bowling green are situated beside Ballater Golf Club. 

The Royal Lochnagar Distillery is situated close to Balmoral castle and can be visited for tours.
Dining out or eating in. Ballater is host not only to a selection of boutiques and Delis but also to some excellent restaurants. Of note is:

Ballater Main Street