The industries of Aberdeen City and Shire

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  • Looking across to the harbour and dock of Aberdeen City
    Aberdeen Harbour – the heart of the energy industry's marine operations in north west Europe
  • A display case containing a model tall ship in Aberdeen Maritime Museum
    Aberdeen Maritime Museum
  • The interior of Aberdeen Maritime Museum
    Some of the fascinating exhibits on display in Aberdeen Maritime Museum
  • Looking along a farm track across fields with bales of hay to Corgarff Castle
    Discover how innovations in agriculture have changed rural life in Aberdeenshire

Aberdeen City and Shire is world-renowned for its thriving North Sea oil and gas industries. But it also boasts a proud maritime and agricultural heritage that stretches back hundreds of years.

Aberdeen City and Shire’s industrial growth has long played an influential role in not just Scotland’s economic development, but the UK's as a whole. Even the granite quarried at Rubislaw Quarry for over 300 years to construct Aberdeen city's distinctive grey buildings was the same used to build London’s Houses of Parliament and Waterloo Bridge.

Owing to its burgeoning oil and gas industry, Aberdeen ranks as one of the most prosperous cities in Scotland. Frequently hailed as the heart of Europe’s petroleum industry, the city boasts one of the busiest commercial heliports in the world and Aberdeen Harbour, a  state-of-the-art port which serves a myriad of offshore oil and gas facilities stationed in the North Sea.

You can learn more about this fascinating and rapidly evolving industry at the award-winning Aberdeen Maritime Museum. The museum’s Energy Exploration galleries feature educational and interactive displays that shine a light on everything from the events leading up to the discovery of oil deposits in the North Sea during the 1970s and 80s to what life is like for oil workers offshore.

Exploring the city’s relationship with the sea, the Aberdeen Maritime Museum also charts the development of the region’s other key industries – fishing and shipbuilding. Located on the city’s historic Shiprow, the museum’s unique collections brings to life the age of the fast sailing clippers, the development of Aberdeen Harbour from its earliest origins to the present day, the rise and decline of whaling and much more.

In addition to its flourishing oil and gas industries, the region is also renowned for the quality and variety of its local produce. Discover just how much the region’s agricultural life has evolved at the Aberdeenshire Farming Museum located in Aden Country Park.

Housed within a 19th century semi-circular farm steading, costumed guides, audio-visual displays and exhibitions vividly illustrate how agriculture in Aberdeenshire has dramatically changed over the course of the 20th century.