Arbroath, settled in the 12th century, lies 15 miles to the north east of Dundee. The attractive historic harbour remains in action today and long sandy beaches and stunning sandstone cliffs stretch out on either side of the town.
The attractive old harbour of Arbroath remains in action and long sandy beaches and stunning sandstone cliffs stretch out on either side of the town. Arbroath abbey, located near the centre of the town, is also well worth a visit.
The town's most famous product is the Arbroath Smokie, which was first created in the village of Auchmithie. It is line-caught haddock, smoke-cured over smouldering oak chips, and still made here in a number of family-run smokehouses tucked in around the harbour. One of the most approachable and atmospheric is MM Spink's tiny whitewashed premises at 10 Marketgate; chef and cookery writer Rick Stein described the fish here, warm from the smoke, as "a world-class delicacy".
Wander through the huddled cottages of the 'Fit o'the Toon' - the harbour district where the smell of Arbroath smokies usually hangs heavy in the air. Beyond it, the seafront road heads into Victoria Park. At the far end of the road, a path climbs up over the red sandstone cliffs of Whiting Ness, stretching endlessly onto the horizon and eroded into a multitude of inlets, caves and arches that warrant hours of leisurely exploration.
Pop into the local Information Centre and pick up a copy of the Arbroath Cliffs Nature Trail Guide. This free pocket guide picks out 20 good viewing points along the first mile and a half, and also gives details on the local flora and fauna. Watch out - you may even see puffins! And at the end of your walk pop into The But 'n' Ben restaurant in Auchmithie - their Arbroath Smokie Pancake is a must!