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Stonehaven Beach

Stonehaven Beach


Stonehaven is a popular sand and shingle coastal resort beach, which is well used by water sports enthusiasts.  The area designated is Stonehaven bay which is approximately 1.1km in length, bound by the overflow of River Cowie to the north and the River Carron to the south by the salmon lane.


Stonehaven was originally named Stonehive after a large rock once located in the harbour entrance. This rock was blasted out by Robert Stevenson in 1826 during improvements to allow for safe passage into the harbour.

The areas in and surrounding Dunnottar Castle are very picturesque. Dunnottar Castle once held the crown jewels of Scotland. The castle was captured by King Edward I during the wars of independence, a year later, in 1297, William Wallace reclaimed the castle and burned down the church and English garrison inside it. In 1562 Oliver Cromwell and troops from England tried to seize them but were unsuccessful. There are two other castles in the area, Fetteresso and Muchalls, however they are both privately owned.

Stonehavens old Tolbooth is dated back to the 16th century and is the town’s oldest structure. It was once the town’s courthouse and where covenanters were locked away. Now it is a history museum opened to the public. 

Natural Space

The cliffs around Stonehaven are some the biggest and have some very impressive wildlife. The RSPB take control of some of these cliffs as they are one of the largest places in Britain where a diverse range of seabirds nest each year.

Interestingly Stonehaven’s beach made a discovery of a fossil from the oldest known land animal a species of millipede in 2004. 


Stonehaven is only 15 miles (24km) south of Aberdeen City heading towards Angus. It is a fast-growing town and a lot of amenities. You can take the scenic country route around Stonehaven and travel north and south and see the impressive cliffs and coastline. To get a great view of the long coastline and harbour in Stonehaven you can go to Blackhill.

Getting There

Stonehaven is located just off the A90, 14 miles south of Aberdeen and approximately 20 miles north from Montrose taking the coastal route - A92.  The town is well sign posted from both roads.  The access to the beach from the southern end of town is at the historical harbour area or from the northern end via Beach Road which is adjacent to the sports centre and open air swimming pool.  Both points are well sign posted.

Water Quality Information

This beach is a designated bathing water site. An electric sign displaying real-time bathing water quality predictions is available at this beach between 1 June - 15 September. You can also find out the daily prediction by visiting the SEPA website. Please observe local signage and only swim where it is safe to do so. 

Contact Details

Aberdeenshire Council (Landscape Services)
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