The Royal Deeside and the Cairngorms is famed for its spectacular scenery with breathtaking mountain views and picturesque glens and lochs. The following areas are must see sites in the area:
Cairn O' Mount
This 1,500 feet hill lies some eight miles or so south of Banchory and is topped by a prehistoric round cairn. It lies on the B974 road from Banchory to Fettercairn, which is famed for often being one of the first roads in Scotland to be closed by snow when winter weather strikes. There is a car park and viewpoint at the Cairn O' Mount and views that, on a clear day, seem to stretch for ever. You can see all the way across the hills and farmlands of the Mearns to the North Sea.
Falls of Feugh
The Water of Feugh is the largest tributary of the River Dee, which it joins at Banchory. Just before it joins the river, it cascades down a series of falls and pools where you can sometimes spot leaping salmon. The Bridge of Feugh crosses the river at the falls giving great viewpoints and the Falls of Feugh Tearooms are a local landmark much favoured by the many visitors who enjoy the easy stroll out from Banchory town centre.
This is a quiet and peaceful Highland glen running to the north west of Strathdon. It is guarded by the ruins of 16th century Glenbuchat Castle. A narrow, single track road runs through the glen with side loops off to farms and small hamlets like Kirkton of Glenbuchat, where the church originally dates back to 1473. Glenbuchat Lodge lies at the head of the glen where the road swings back southwards through Glen Nochty to Bellabeg.
Linn of Dee
A series of beautiful and rugged cascades on the upper reaches of the River Dee 7 miles or so west of Braemar, the Linn of Dee is a rocky narrow neck in the river some 300 yards in length. There is a bridge over the river that was opened by Queen Victoria in 1857 and access is fairly straightforward by taking the Inverey road out of Braemar village centre.
This is a renowned spot on the B9119 road between Tarland and Lumphanan. There are panoramic views across rhe smooth rolling hills and the farmlands all the way to Lochnagar, many miles to the south.
Scolty Hill lies about a mile south of Banchory and is topped by Scolty Tower, which was built as a monument to General Burnett, who fought with the Duke of Wellington in the early 19th century. A spiral staircase leads to the top of the tower from where there are panoramic views over the surrounding countryside. There is a car park signed off the B976 road and a walk of about two miles through woodland and open hillside to the tower.