Exploring Dundee

Dundee is officially promoted as “One City, Many Discoveries,” and since one of my mottos is to make the most of the place I am currently staying in, I took it as a challenge. Here’s a list of cool places I discovered so far:

Nature

On the first look, Dundee might not be the greenest place on earth; however, there are many spots with nature to enjoy. My favorite is the Uni’s botanical garden (pictured above). Mainly now during the autumn, with all the leaves turning into all sorts of colors, it is a place to see. Another very neat location is the Riverside Nature Park:

Due its distance from the downtown, it’s never crowded. It is calm and pretty, and once you are bored with the nature you can spot all the airplanes coming to the airport next door. Tip: There’s a birds observation deck and you can see those Scottish coos there, too.

Another rather neat place is the Balgay Park (below)

There’s nice view, it is not as windy as the Law, there’s even a cool observatory on the top! Definitely worth going. Once you are there, check out also the rose garden on its southern edge.

If you are keen about nature, I can not go without mentioning all the hills that are behind the city:

But that’s another chapter. I will write another post about them, one day.

Towers of Dundee

Dundee have loads of these. Most of them belongs to churches:

Website ScottishChurches.org has a list of them, you can check it out and plan a walk to see their architecture.

You can also find medieval castles within Dundee, towers themselves.

The most famous is the Broughty Castle, a structure with roots in 15th century.

Claypotts Castle

Dudhope Castle

Speaking of towers, did you know that there are two cool light houses?

Well, technically, this is not it Dundee anymore. However, being just on the other side of the Tay bridge towards Tayport, both are easily within a walking distance – therefore worthy to mention.

Another structures towering inside city are the oil rigs. Definitely check them out.

This brings me to..

Industrial

If it wouldn’t be factories, Dundee as we know it wouldn’t exist. And while many of them has been destroyed, there are still some grand ones to admire. Like the remains of the Camperdown Works, and its Cox stack:

It is the tallest smokestack in Scotland built in 19th century, and the factory it belongs to employed over 4000 people at its peak. If you are interested to know more about the local jute industry, visit the Verdant Works. They are under 5mins from the main campus.

Also, it is a good transition to:

Museums

VA and the Discovery, above, are just a fraction of the options. DCA, McManus, Generator, Nomas, Cooper Gallery… if you are into culture, Dundee has you covered. And if you are into old ships, there’s also the HMS Unicorn down at the City Quay:

Bridges of Dundee

..are another thing to see.

Now, Dundee, although it is the sunniest place in Scotland. isn’t always shiny and colorful. But think of all the cloudy days as an opportunity and seek things that look cool in it. Like the bridges, for example.

Rainy, cold, yeah. But also atmospheric, almost mystical environment which is cool as heck. Think how many musicians would sell their soul for having such mood on their album. And you live in it – It is exciting.

Cemeteries

..also looks good in not-so-welcoming weather.

The Howff, a burial ground from 16th century. Another cool one is the Balgay Cemetery

One thing I learned, the more cloudy it gets during the day, the more chances you have to see some cool….

sunsets.

This isn’t a place, but it should be on your list what to see in Dundee.

Alleys

Explore some back roads of Dundee, plenty of them looks like a movie set.

You can challenge yourself to stick a point to a map, somewhere you haven’t been before, and go to explore it. This way you can find unique places no tourist guide will tell you about. Last but not least, keep an eye on..

Events

They can give you access to otherwise closed buildings, and interesting sights.

Like fireworks on the bonfire night, which is coming up this Monday.


Long story short, one doesn’t have to travel miles to see cool stuff. Look what’s behind your porch, you might be surprised. And it saves a penny.

What’s your favorite place in Dundee? Let me know in the comments.

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