Posted : 21 May 2018

Lonely Planet praises ‘thriving, creative Dundee’ in pick of most exciting European destinations to visit this year


Travel authority Lonely Planet today revealed its selection of the best European destinations to visit this summer, with Scotland’s fourth largest city praised for its ‘head-turning’ urban redevelopment, and ranked alongside Italy’s food heartland of Emilia-Romagna, Greece’s Small Cyclades islands and the Northern Spanish region of Cantabria.


Dundee was lauded for its growing cultural scene and the exciting transformation of the city’s historic waterfront; a development spearheaded by the opening of the newest branch of the V&A this September. Describing the city, Lonely Planet’s writers praised a creative scene that “increasingly attracts some of the UK’s most visionary talent”, building on its selection by Unesco as the UK’s first City of Design in 2014.


The recognition forms part of Lonely Planet’s Best in Europe 2018, compiled annually by the travel company’s European experts to reveal their pick of the most exciting and underrated destinations to visit across the continent. This year’ list highlights some of the best lesser-visited regions, alternative city breaks and hidden gems that in-the-know travellers should be planning their next trips around.



Lonely Planet’s spokesperson and Editorial Director, Tom Hall, said: “For those looking to beat the crowds in Europe this summer, Lonely Planet’s Best in Europe reveals our hotlist of destinations that provide a great alternative to traditional favourites. Our travel experts have crossed the continent to discover Europe’s most outstanding, underrated and overlooked places that are worth exploring right now.”


Referencing the selection of Dundee, Mr Hall said: “While visitors have always been assured of a friendly welcome, Dundee has often been overlooked by travellers to Scotland, but that should be set to change. The opening of V&A Dundee is a really exciting moment that marks the city out as well worth a visit, but throw in nationally important museums and attractions, and its dynamic, creative spirit, and travellers will find a city boasting plenty to discover.”


Lonely Planet’s writers have explored the globe for 45 years in search of hidden gems and amazing new travel experiences. Best in Europe 2018 is the sixth iteration of the agenda-setting list, which picks out Europe’s hottest up-and-coming countries, regions and cities.




Dundee is thriving at the moment and everyone is excited about the V & A opening in September. I am absolutely delighted to hear that we have been picked to be in the Lonely Planet top 10 places to visit in Europe.


Dundee offers food, drink and service that can rival anywhere in the world. There is a real buzz about food in the city and the passion of local and independent operators can be seen in everything from food trucks to fine dining, and everything in between. We have a great choice of cafes, bars and restaurants ready to cater to all the needs of the visitors to the city and I look forward to welcoming them into my establishments. 


Grant Avery, owner of Más and Avery & Co


“Lonely Planet featuring Dundee in its top 10 places to visit in Europe is wonderful news. It shows Dundee’s ability to provide high quality experiences during every interaction tourists encounter when visiting the city.


It further cements our decision to open our new Foxlake site at the water front of this growing vibrant city! We are extremely proud to part of this achievement and look forward to welcoming the travellers that Lonely Planet’s listing will attract to Dundee.”


Zak Hegarty



"We're delighted to see something we've always known being recognised on an international scale: that Dundee is a fantastic city to visit, with a thriving cultural life and incredible creative energy. I hope this latest accolade for the city will encourage even more people to plan a trip here, and we at DCA look forward to welcoming them when they do."


Beth Bate , Director DCA



"This is a fantastic boon for the city as well as for Scotland's Tay Country region by extension. This level of global recognition is very special because Dundee is the sole representative of the UK on this list. 


The hard work and efforts of the city are really paying off and we are proud to be working with so many like minded people who have strived to give Dundee her rightfully deserved place as a world class destination."


Louise Murphy , Dark Dundee


The bright future’s giving us all a glow in ‘sunny’ Dundee!  Oure renaissance city of Design, Discovery and Dennis! This summer, the free ‘Bash Street’s Back at McMenace’ exhibition at the renamed McManus Galleries, will remind everyone Dundee is the World capital of Comics. To me, Dundee is, was and always will be the inspiration behind Beanotown: you can’t get any cooler than that!


Mike Stirling ,  City Ambassador, Editor Beano



Posted : 19 April 2018

We all forget something when packing for a trip, but fear not if you’ve forgotten your sunglasses on a trip to Dundee this summer!

When Heather and Sam arrived in Dundee to soak in the culture they also soaked up the blue skies of Scotland’s sunniest city. Fresh off the Loganair flight from London, they picked up a pair of sunshine-yellow shades courtesy of the #SunnyDundee campaign before heading off to explore the city.

Watch the video here

With the walk along Riverside so close to Dundee airport, they took in the view of Dundee’s iconic bridges before enjoying the latest visiting exhibition at Dundee Contemporary Arts. After a hearty lunch, it was time to stretch their legs on Slessor Gardens, the new public space between the Caird Hall and the Waterfront. Apart from concerts, Slessor Gardens has interactive activities and events throughout the year.

At The McManus Museum and Art Gallery they were amazed at the blend of classic painting and modern art, with Heather taking a colourful selfie with the Sunny Dundee shades to share with the #SunnyDundee campaign on her social media.

In the City Square, on the steps of the Caird Hall, they met Dundee’s famous kilted yogi Finlay Wilson, and leaving him feeling limber, it wasn’t too much of a stretch to their next stop at the RRS Discovery and Discovery Point, where they could delve into polar exploration and admire the exterior of the V&A Dundee, opening in September 2018.

As the sun went down over Scotland’s sunniest city, it was time to put the Sunny Dundee sunglasses away and enjoy the view from the summit of The Law.
“The weather was so good when we were in Dundee it was a shame to go indoors,” says Sam. “But there’s just so much culture to see. Our Sunny Dundee sunglasses are a great souvenir. We’ll hold on to them for our return visit when the V&A Dundee opens!”

Post your #SunnyDundee updates to @dundeecity on Twitter and Instagram and Dundee - One City Many Discoveries on Facebook operates direct flights between London Stansted and Dundee 6 days a week.

Video by Bonnie Brae Productions

Posted : 5 February 2018

With the city of Dundee topping the world’s New Year travel lists, Discovery Point - the site of the historic RRS Discovery visitor attraction - is gearing up for a dramatic £500,000 facelift.

With the neighbouring V&A opening in the second half of 2018, the award-winning Discovery Point will be dramatically enhanced as it prepares for an anticipated surge in visitors to Dundee’s waterfront.

Generous funding from the Coastal Communities Fund and Dundee City Council has contributed towards significant improvements and several new Antarctic-related exhibits at Discovery Point, which celebrates its 25th Anniversary in the summer of 2018.

The new gallery spaces will feature fresh graphics, audio visual shows, and hands-on digital interactives, as well as displays of objects from the museum’s nationally significant polar collection that are not presently on view. The redevelopment will also create a new multi-purpose learning and activity space.

Dundee Heritage Trust, which operates RRS Discovery, is also hiring an Audience Engagement Officer. This new position is a two-year post funded by Museums Galleries Scotland and the Foyle Foundation. The successful candidate will help develop and deliver a programme of events, activities and resources to attract new audiences to the Trust’s two accredited and 5-star rated museums, Discovery Point and social history and jute museum Verdant Works.

The appointment comes as DHT prepares to play its part in welcoming visitors from across the globe. 2018 is set to be an important and exciting year for Dundee, which features on a set of prestigious New Year travel lists.

The Wall Street Journal recently named Dundee as one of the top 5 locations in the world alongside the likes of Madagascar and Shanghai, The Observer named it a must-see destination for 2018, while leading US business magazine Bloomberg ranked the UNESCO City of Design next to Los Angeles, Singapore and Florence in their roundup of the 22 best places to visit this year.

A recent VisitScotland survey highlighted that 40% of visitors are drawn to Dundee and Angus to visit an attraction, far more than the Scotland national average.

Paul Jennings, executive director of Dundee Heritage Trust, said: "Dundee is now firmly on the international map as a cultural and design centre, and we're proud to be part of that. The innovative High Mill Project at Verdant Works has just secured a prestigious award for its outstanding architecture and RRS Discovery itself is nearing the end of a £350,000 restoration and preservation programme.

“Our venues welcome more than 190,000 visitors a year. As we head into an exciting event and exhibition programme for 2018, the creation of this new position will ensure we exceed expectations and engage with visitors in new and interesting ways.”

For more information visit

Posted : 2 February 2018


Visitors arriving in Dundee can expect to find a thriving, contemporary food and drink scene from cultured cafes to fine dining and pop-up street food markets. A short drive or train ride will transport visitors from the city to nearby Angus, home to some of the best produce in Scotland.

Petr and Katja begin their food adventure in Dundee city-centre, a short 3 mile drive from Dundee Airport and experience a local favourite, a ‘Dundee Peh on a roll’ at third-generation butchers Scotts. The pair go on to taste-test Dundee Cake, the world-famous fruitcake made to a recipe that originates from the 19th century at family owned Clark’s Bakery.

A trip to Arbroath in nearby Angus sees Petr try an Arbroath Smokie in for the first time, describing the local speciality as ‘a winner’ and ‘the most freshly prepared smoked fish ever tasted’.

The Scottish food adventure also includes a trip to Mackays, the last remaining producers of Dundee Orange Marmalade, fine dining at Gordon’s Restaurant in Inverkeillor close to the beautiful Lunan Bay beach and a traditional Scottish dessert made with locally grown raspberries, oats, cream and whisky known as Cranachan.

“Now we have to go home and say Scottish food is amazing!” says Katja.

The next video will focus on a cultural weekend break in Dundee to be released in March.

#DestinationDundee - operates flights between London Stansted and Dundee 6 days a week, with one-way fares from £49.99.

Watch the video here

Posted : 27 November 2017

Dundee has held their annual Christmas Light Night, check out some of the pictures from all of the weekends events here!

The Torch Light Procession

The Torch Light Procession kicked off at Dundee High School and headed to City Square with music from Town Waits and The Boys Brigade Pipe Band.


Torchlight 2

The Christmas Lights Switch On

The lights and tree in City Square were turned on by the Lord Provost and Santa.

 Christmas Tree

<--break->Big Winter Warm Up

Dundee Leisure and Culture led a festive group aerobics workout in the City Square.

 Winter Warm Up

<--break->Wishing Wall

Crowds headed down to Shore Terrace to make a special wish at our Wishing Wall.

 Wishing Wall

Celebratory Fireworks

To celebrate the Christmas festivities there was a spectacular firework display in City Square and could be seen from Slessor Gardens.

<--break->Pop Up Christmas Market

Over Friday and Saturday Slessor Gardens held a pop up market selling food, drinks and gifts.



Posted : 25 October 2017

An empty shop in Dundee’s city centre is being transformed into a temporary exhibition and design related workshop space.

The team behind Dundee Design Festival have taken over the space in Reform Street as part of the city’s first Dundee Design Month.

It’s hoped that by bringing design activity to a vacant city-centre space it will have the same positive effect the two previous Design Festivals brought to West Ward Works, an empty factory space that’s now being considered as a permanent cultural space for the city.

The 240sq ft space will open to the public on Friday 18th May with a new exhibition, ‘Factory Shop’ and play host to design related events and workshops for one week during Dundee Design Month running between 4 May to 3 June.

‘Factory Shop’ is an exhibition of prototypes and products made by designers in factories and marks the culmination of the first Dundee Design Festival ‘Factory Residency Programme’ which launched last year.

“The Factory Residency Programme offered three designers work placements with Scotland-based manufacturers to develop ideas, improvise with materials and experiment with different industrial techniques. The results are really impressive,” said Siôn Parkinson, Curator and Producer of the Factory Shop exhibition. 

“One of the designers, Florence Dwyer, who was paired with Turnberry Rugs in Ayrshire, ended up working with them every week for a year to make a series of hand-tufted tapestries and rug designs. Ceramicist Dawn Youll used her residency with the Glassblowing Workshop in Glasgow to learn how to make complex scientific glassware which she’s combined with new ceramic pieces for the exhibition. And Tommy Perman and Simon Kirby have been working with Tayport-based manufacturers FifeX as well as Old School Fabrications in Edinburgh to make a series of sculptural sound devices. For the Factory Shop exhibition, they’ve used what they’ve learned to turn the shopfront window into a giant speaker that responds to the changing light of the day.”   

Clive Gillman, Director of Creative Industries, Creative Scotland said: “The work of the design community in Dundee continues to impact on the reformation of the city - from last year’s Factory Floor celebration to opening the Factory Shop in 2018. Taking design in a smart, inclusive way into the heart of the city this will certainly be unlike any other shop in this street of reform.”

“One of the successes of the two previous Dundee Design Festivals was how the event used design to reignite the vast former factory at West ward Works into a potentially more sustainable cultural venue for the city. UNESCO City of Design Dundee aims to repeat some of this success by taking over a vacant high-street property in the city-centre.” said Anna Day, Project Manager UNESCO City of Design Dundee.


The subject of creating creative places will be the focus of a two day workshop during Dundee Design Month. ‘Places of Potential’, hosted by Districts of Creativity Network will take place over 23-24 May.

The vacant unit owned by Dundee City Council has been leased to UNESCO Dundee City of Design for one month.

Factory Shop is produced by Tilde Arts in partnership with UNESCO City of Design Dundee and supported by Creative Scotland.

Photo caption: Siôn Parkinson, Curator and Producer of the Factory Shop exhibition in Reform Street, Dundee.

A video documenting Dundee Design Festival’s Factory Residency Programme can be seen here :

Full event details can be found at and via @DesignDundee on Twitter and Instagram or on Facebook at

Posted : 12 July 2017

There’s never been a better time to eat out in Dundee, and with an increasing number of restaurants and cafes comes greater choice. Whether you have a full-time plant-based diet or just like to participate in Meat-Free Mondays, there is an impressive choice of vegan and vegetarian food in the city.


The Parlour

The Parlour was at the forefront of Dundee's culinary renaissance, offering inventive takes on standard menu items and giving vegetarians more than just a cursory nod. Lunchtime favourites such as sandwiches, salads, soups and tarts are seasonal and fresh. There is a spot of indulgence, however, with an array of cakes beckoning from under their cloches.

58 West Post, DD1 5ER 01382 203588


Avery & Co Ltd

With a full vegan menu available, there’s no close examination of the choices required to see what’s suitable. There’s also a separate gluten-free menu, and dairy-free options are also available. Vegetarians are also well catered for here, as are carnivores with Avery & Co managing that delicate and difficult balance of being able to satisfy all palates.

34 South Tay Street, DD1 1PD. 01382 201533


The Bach

Everything here is made from fresh, so apart from a wide range of vegetarian and vegan options, if anything on the menu appeals but there’s a meat element, just ask how they can adapt it to suit. And that’s not discriminating against the meat-lovers. If a veggie option looks good but could be improved by a little chicken, that’s possible too!

20 Exchange Court, Exchange Street. DD1 3DE. (Up a side street – look out for the car park and metal staircase) 0800 029 1750


The Flame Tree Café

Also found on one of Dundee’s best foodie thoroughfares, this is the place for the right balance of healthy option and a little indulgence. A lovely healthy soup should always be followed by some cake! Most of the menu here is vegan, with the vegan BLT a particular favourite.

20A Exchange Street DD1 3DL 01382 204200

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Indian food is well-known for being friendly to those who prefer to avoid meat. For a little indulgence, try the stylish Dil’Se, which has been offering authentic Indian and Bangladeshi cuisine for 14 years now. Most of the dishes can be made with vegetable substitutes – they have a fine way with an aubergine!

99 Perth Rd, Dundee DD1 4JA. 01382 221501



For many West End residents, Pacamara filled the need for a great breakfast and brunch destination. It has quite a reputation for its coffee but it’s the brunches that fill up quickly so get in early. The menu offers loads of vegan and vegetarian options and a great selection for those who need to avoid gluten.

302 Perth Road DD2 1AU

01382 527666

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Posted : 12 July 2017

Pay a visit to one of the many stylish bars in Dundee, and it’s likely that you can choose a refreshment that has been created right here in the city. Over the past few years Scotland has been producing delicious gins and imaginative craft beers – and you can find some of them here in Dundee.

Dundee Gin

The first release from Dundee Gin had the true taste of the city in every glass. Dundee Gin boss Peter Menzies wanted to create something that paid to the city’s heritage. Working with Mackay’s, the Arbroath-based preserve manufacturer, Dundee Gin blended the spirit with Mackay’s Dundee Marmalade to create Dundee Marmalade Gin, which flew off the shelves when it launched in December 2016, and was exported around the world. There is also has a traditional Tay Navy Strength Gin.


Law Brewing Company


The Law is Dundee’s most ancient and prominent landmark. It has also given its name to one of the city’s breweries which, as well as being inspired by the hill, is driven by Dundee’s love of music. Law Brewing founder Danny Cullen describes its All-Nighter Golden Ale, inspired by Northern Soul dance events, as a refreshing golden beer with a heavy beat of tropical/citrus notes and a fast tempo of marmalade. Mods will love the target-themed packaging. Beer lovers will sing the praises of its taste.


Verdant Gin


In 2017, Verdant Spirits opened the first city distillery for 200 years. Based in the West End of the city, the first spirit to be bottled was Verdant Gin, a small-batch release that has proved popular with traditionalists and mixologists looking for something with citrus freshness but spicy undertones for their creations. The botanicals used are inspired by the routes that were once used by traders to and from the port of Dundee.


Verdant hopes to extend the range of spirits it offers in years to come.


71 Lager


The clean taste of 71 Lager, the Bohemian Pilsner produced by 71 Brewing, is reflected in its minimalist but slightly abstract packaging, highly appropriate for Dundee, a UNESCO City of Design. 71 Brewing, based in the former Blackness Foundry, says that it can thank the soft Dundee water for the taste of its Pilsner. Combine that with Czech noble hops and British Pilsner malt and it’s an ideal tipple for sitting out in beer gardens, while enjoying the Dundee summer.

Posted : 11 July 2017

Mark Beaumont, the man who cycled the world and has completed a host of long-distance adventures, has been named the new Rector of the University of Dundee.

Mark, who attended school in Dundee, assumes the role of Rector with immediate effect. He was elected unopposed and succeeds the actor Brian Cox, who was elected to the position in 2010 and has served two terms.

"I am absolutely thrilled, and slightly surprised, to be the new Rector of the University of Dundee," said Mark. "Six years ago I sat in the audience at the Caird Hall as Brian Cox stepped into the role and I remember his words about making a real difference. I commend Brian for his hard work and will do my utmost to continue being a credible voice for the student body.

"I went to high school in Dundee and was delighted to return and receive an honorary degree from the University in 2012. In fact Dundee was the starting point for my first ever adventure at the age of 12, to cycle across Scotland.

"The University of Dundee is also where my sister graduated from, so I am certainly not short of connections and I am very proud of the city and the University's many successes over the years. I look forward to playing my part in the University of Dundee's many future triumphs."

Mark will be formally installed as Rector in a ceremony to be arranged for a later date. The Rector is elected to serve the students' interests, including at the University Court, the governing body of the institution.

Professor Sir Pete Downes, Principal and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Dundee, said, "I am delighted to welcome Mark Beaumont into the University community, and I am sure he will be an excellent representative for our students.

"He will have a hard act to follow in Brian Cox, who has displayed hard work, dedication and friendship to the students and to the University in general over his past six years in post. We are all extremely grateful to Brian and hope that he will continue to be involved in the work of the Students' Association and the University."

Posted : 10 July 2017

Dundee’s £1billion waterfront redevelopment project was linked firmly to the city’s heritage of discovery and innovation today, with the formal unveiling of the Discovery Walk.

Discovery Walk is a series of specially designed bronze plaques commemorating famous people from or connected with Dundee who have made significant contributions to science and society.

Lord Provost Bob Duncan of the City of Dundee formally unveiled the first ten plaques to be installed in Discovery Walk, at Slessor Gardens on the city's Central Waterfront.

There are nine plaques commemorating scientists, engineers, writers, artists, social reformers and philanthropists, plus a tenth plaque introducing the Walk.

The individuals being celebrated were chosen in a public consultation exercise last year. The criteria for selection were that the nominees must be deceased and must have either been born or spent much of their time in Dundee.

They must have made a notable or influential discovery or innovation, either in Dundee or clearly linked to the city.

The audience for the event included relatives of those being honoured in the plaques, together with colleagues, supporters and all of those who have made the Walk possible.

Lord Provost of Dundee Bob Duncan said: "The city already has a number of interesting and exciting attractions that bring tourists to Dundee and it is wonderful that we can now add the Discovery Walk to that list.

"Our heritage is studded with prominent people in a wide variety of disciplines and it is great to see them being celebrated and commemorated in this way."

Discovery Walk is the brainchild of Kelly Marr, an Australian who has made Dundee her home.

She said: "I was inspired by the famous Writers’ Walk around Sydney Harbour celebrating more than 50 writers either from or associated with Australia in some way. During the last 20 years I would hear about some of the great innovations that were made in Dundee, and I always felt that it was a great shame that such achievements were not celebrated publicly.

"To understand the people included in Discovery Walk is to understand that great achievements are the result of intellect, certainty, determination, generosity and imagination. These are the examples that will be passed on to all generations of Dundonians, inspiring the city to retain the accolade of being a world-recognised progressive and innovative centre of achievement."

Ten organisations in the city have agreed to be Champions of Discovery Walk. NCR are overall Champions, and each of the plaques has a Champion closely linked to the achievement being celebrated.

Adam Crighton, Vice-President at NCR in Dundee, said: "NCR considers it an honour and a privilege to champion this unique and important project as we celebrate our 70th year in Dundee in 2016. Courageous, forward thinking individuals, like the ones we are paying tribute to today, are undoubtedly at the forefront of driving innovations that enable us to evolve and grow as both individuals and as a society. NCR has a proud history of continuous innovation over the last 130 years, a number of which would simply not have been possible without the creative legacy of the candidates that we honour today."

Dundee-based artist and illustrator Suzanne Scott, who works under the name WhimSicAL LusH, has been commissioned to design the first 10 plaques. Suzanne has exhibited all over Scotland and her unique illustrations have featured in widely sold prints, stationary, mugs and jewellery.

Suzanne said: ""I am beyond delighted to have been asked to be a part of this exciting and interesting project. To have my work be part of the Dundee Waterfront is such an honour. I was born in Dundee and came back to live here 15 years ago. I never left as it is a beautiful and inspiring city, which I am proud to live in."

The Discovery Walk project is being steered by a group comprising representatives of Dundee City Council, Abertay Historical Society, Abertay University, University of Dundee, Dundee Science Centre and Axis Shield Diagnostics.

The group hopes to be able to raise further funding to extend the Walk with more plaques in the future.


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