Moving home is an exciting time and while you can fall in love with a house, it’s important that the location also provides what you need.
Alongside schools, transport links and health care provisions – what there is to do in the area will feature high up the list too.
Johnshaven is a traditional fishing village on the North East coast which has a brilliant range of services on offer for its size, but it also benefits from brilliant facilities in the surrounding area too.
12 Things to do in Johnshaven & the surrounding area
The heart of the village, the harbour has been Johnshaven’s link to the North Sea for centuries and is now a stunning place to take a walk, enjoy some fresh air and soak up the history of the place. Popular with dog walkers and families alike, today, lobsters and crabs are the main catch. Lobster fishing is carried out locally and live lobsters can be seen – but not touched – stored in water tanks near the harbour before shipment to the Continent.
Located in a former lifeboat station, the museum tells the story of Johnshaven’s rich maritime history, particularly around the fishing industry which has been a mainstay of the village for centuries. The Museum is a collection of displays, artefacts, videos, presentations and images of the heritage of the village from the mid 1600s. With friendly museum guides available who are only too pleased to talk to you about some of the interesting aspects of the stories over the years. The times were hard and the woman’s lot was not an easy one. She carried the family whilst the husband was at sea.
Located near the museum, the Starfish Studio was established in 2009 and features a variety of Scottish art and crafts with many unique items created by local artists, some of whom have been inspired by the surrounding picturesque countryside and coastline. All the pieces stocked have been lovingly created by people who are passionate about their work.
If you are looking for a bit to eat, you can’t go wrong with the Anchor. Set in the heart of the village, the hotel’s restaurant serves up some of the freshest seafood available including plump Scottish mussels, beer battered haddock and its famous Seafood Pie. On a fine day you can enjoy your meal outside and take in the coastal sounds and atmosphere.
Founded by the McBay family in early 2021, The Lobster Shop specialises in sourcing and selling the best local seafood, landed by creel boats in the village. Founders Loren and her brothers Ivan and Jason, decided to build on the 70+ years of experience in the family of seafood production to create a unique way of allowing everyone to sample the best produce from the local waters at home.
Based on a 3rd generation family farm just outside of the village on the A92, Sillyflatt grows and sells top quality hogget, rare breed pork, Christmas goose, pasture raised hen, duck and goose eggs, a wide range of sustainably grown vegetables and cut flowers. Additionally the shop stocks locally sourced farmed venison, beef products, cheese, fruit and vegetables, preserves, honey, eco cleaning products, toiletries and hand crafted gifts. Barista quality coffee and other hot drinks are available to take away, as are fresh home bakes.
As well as being a scenic holiday park with plenty of space for visitors, Wairds Park also features football pitches, an 18-hole putting green as well as other activities sure to keep kids of all ages entertained.
Scotland is known for golf and the North East coast features some of the most stunning links courses in the world – including The Home of Golf, the Old Course at St Andrews. However, while Old Tom Morris’ masterpiece might be the jewel in the crown, there are a number of courses – 7 by our count – just within a 15 mile radius of Johnshaven, including Montrose Links and Stonehaven, a true challenge for any golfer set high on the Aberdeenshire cliffs.
South of Johnshaven, St Cyrus beach is known as one of the most picturesque in the region with long sandy dunes perfect for dog walking, playing games or taking to the water. The adjoining nature reserve is one of the richest and most diverse reserves in Britain. In summer it’s awash with wildflowers and a haven for insects. There are many species of breeding birds, including meadow pipit, stonechat and skylark. In winter, large numbers of waders, ducks, geese and swans visit the estuary and native Scottish cattle breeds graze the reserve from April to October. You might even see some intrepid visitors taking to the skies above the beach paragliding.
South of Stonehaven, Dunnottar Castle is one of the most recognisable landmarks in the North East of Scotland. Perched on a rocky outcrop atop the cliffs, not only is the castle a great visitor attraction, but it is also a prime location to spot seabird colonies, seals and even dolphins.
Located on the outskirts of nearby Montrose, Charleton Farm offers visitors the chance to pick their own fresh strawberries – a product that the Angus region is particularly well known for – as well as peas and gooseberries. It also has a well-stocked farm shop featuring products from other local producers, a friendly cafe and a large children’s playground.
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Caterline is another small fishing village on the Mearns coast and the Creel Inn is famous for its use of outstanding local seafood. The restaurant is small, so booking ahead is advised, but it’s well worth a trip even if only to enjoy a drink while soaking up the views!
We hope that if you are considering a move to Johnshaven, or just fancy visiting, we have given you plenty of inspiration on things to do and see in and around the village. Only a few plots remain for sale at The Beaches, and more information can be found here.