Arts and culture in Aberdeen City and Shire

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From the striking architecture of the Granite City to stunning art collections and riveting Highland games, Aberdeen City and Shire offers a breadth and quality of arts and culture attractions and events that is simply world-class.

Famed for its iconic granite buildings and unmistakable skyline, Aberdeen city is home to one of the most important art collections in the world. At Aberdeen Art Gallery view paintings by Impressionist masters such as Monet and Renoir alongside avant-garde works by Damian Hirst.

There are plenty of arts venues spread across the city offering fantastic live entertainment. His Majesty’s Theatre, an impressive Edwardian venue offering musicals, opera, ballet and more, while the more intimate Lemon Tree is the best place to experience the city’s thriving local music scene. Between May and September visitors can experience the unforgettable spectacle of Highland games held throughout the region which culminate with the Braemar Gathering.

Aberdeenshire possesses a unique beauty which provides an endless source of inspiration to local artists and craft makers. Discover beautiful arts and crafts including paintings, handcrafted furniture, ceramics and much more in galleries and shops found throughout the region’s towns and villages.

The region has also inspired literary figures as diverse as Bram Stoker and Lewis Grassic Gibbon, and you can visit many attractions and places connected to their works.

Take a look through the attractions and activities, learn more about the arts and culture of Aberdeen City and Shire and plan a trip there today.

  • The front façade of Aberdeen Art Gallery
    The front façade of Aberdeen Art Gallery
  • Dolphin sculpture by the boardwalk at Stonehaven
    Dolphin sculpture by the boardwalk at Stonehaven
  • Blair Atholl Highland Games tug o' war
    The tug o' war at Blair Atholl Highland Games
  • Crowds sitting on a hillside looking towards the Braemar Games
    Braemar Gathering
Marischal College, Aberdeen


With its iconic granite buildings which glint in the sunshine, Aberdeen is one of Scotland’s most striking and vibrant cities.

A visitor admires beautiful artworks displayed inside Aberdeen Art Gallery in the city centre of Aberdeen

Arts and culture attractions

Plan a day at arts and culture attractions in Aberdeen City and Shire. Spend a day at galleries and the evening at the theatre.

A Highland dancer taking part in the sword dancing event whilst a piper plays at the Ballater Highland Games

Highland games

Taking place around Scotland every summer, the Highland games bring together dancing, competition and Scottish fun.

The Lemon Tree - an arts venue in Aberdeen

Arts and culture events

Enjoy a variety of arts and culture events in Aberdeen City and Shire including music, literature and dance.

The atmospheric ruins of Slains Castle with a stomy sky overhead


Explore Aberdeen City and Shire’s literary connections, many which stretch back hundreds of years.

Highland dancers compete at the Lonach Gathering

Music, dance and theatre events

Experience exciting music, dance and theatre events in Aberdeen City and Shire. Choose from concerts, gigs and theatre shows.