Visit Portsoy and the surrounding villages and stay in bed & breakfast accommodation:
Portsoy, Aberdeenshire. The story of this coastal burgh is one of great vicissitudes. In the 18th century the Old Harbour of Portsoy was a major commercial port. In the next hundred years fishing boomed. Today that maritime importance has all gone, but the new Portsoy shows great initiative as a holiday resort. The previously shabby and rather derelict buildings round the old harbour were handsomely reconstructed by the Town Council, and have indeed won a Saltire Society award and a Civic Trust commendation. The Old Harbour is now an attractive amenity, and there is an active sailing club.
Portsoy boasts a highly picturesque open-air swimming-pool amid the rocks to the West of the town, opened in 1934, and, on the East, a delightful if modest open-air theatre arena, where a wide range of plays is produced at the height of the holiday season.
Straddling two streams that run into a great rocky bay between Redhythe Head and Cowhythe Head, in a district which has been called a “geological museum”, Portsoy was made a burgh of barony in 1550, but the old harbour was the creation of Patrick Ogilvie, Lord Boyne, who developed the port from the export of “Portsoy marble” obtained from a vein of serpentine still exposed near the new swimming pool. In 1700 he persuaded the Scots Parliament to assist this by prohibiting the import of foreign marble and the trade flourished mightily for the six years till the Treaty of Union altered the situation. There was a considerable export to France, and Louis XIV used the serpentine from Portsoy for two of the chimney-pieces of the Palace of Versailles. A magnificent fireplace of Portsoy marble can be seen today in Cullen House.
In 1825 the Earl of Seafield built at his own expense a new harbour alongside the old one. Its siting and construction were faulty, and it was wrecked by storms. It was rebuilt to cope with the herring boom in the 19th century. Portsoy is within easy reach of some very striking coastal scenery and good beaches. About 2 miles West is the picturesque fishing village of Sandend, locally pronounced “Saan-eyn”.
Nearby towns: Banff, Keith, Macduff, Turriff, Whitehills
Nearby villages: Aberchirder, Boyndie, Buchan, Clunie, Cornhill, Cullen, Deskford, Drybridge, Dunlugas, Findochty, Fordyce, Gordonstown, Ianstown, Keithan, Kirktown of Alvah, Longmanhill, Marnoch, Mountblairy, Newmill, Plaidy, Portknockie, Rathven, Sandend, Whitehills
Have you decided to visit Portsoy or the surrounding villages? Please look above for somewhere to stay in:
- a Portsoy bed and breakfast (a Portsoy B&B or Portsoy b and b)
- a Portsoy guesthouse
- a Portsoy hotel (or motel)
- a Portsoy self-catering establishment, or
- other Portsoy accommodation