North of Scotland
The North of Scotland has the largest land mass of any region in the UK. It extends from Shetland in the North to Lochgilphead in the South; from the Western Isles in the West to Aberdeen in the East. It also has a longer coastline that the rest of the UK put together! Discover diverse and spectacular wildlife, beautiful islands, sandy beaches, a wide range of outdoor activities, including golf, cycling, hill walking, skiing and quadbiking. Combine this with excellent road, rail and air transport, family friendly surroundings, low crime rates and the North of Scotland could be the perfect place to live.
Located on the North East coast Aberdeen is Scotland's third largest city, known as the Granite City due to its distinctive granite buildings. It has its origins heavily in industry, today it is a hub of farming, fishing, oil and gas. Aberdeen is a cosmopolitan, busy and vibrant city; it has extensive bars, restaurants, nightclubs and shopping. Aberdeen is a thriving, international city it has one of the lowest unemployment and crime rates in the UK. The city offers many excellent state schools as well as private schools and even an international school. Aberdeen has often been voted one of the best places to live in the UK, not only that but it is an exciting city that is ever growing.
Grampian encompasses the rest of the North East of Scotland; it includes Aberdeenshire, Moray and Royal Dee. Within Grampian is the Cairngorms National Park an area of preservation due to its outstanding natural beauty. The Royal Dee is where over 150 years ago Queen Victoria decided to make her holiday home and where the famous Royal Residence the Balmoral is today. Elgin in the Moray area of Grampian is one of Scotland's smallest but oldest cities; it is steeped in history and is a flourishing city offering the bounties of local produce. Grampian offers a high standard of living with the city of Aberdeen within it you can enjoy all the benefits of a city as well as the spectacular views and lifestyle that country living can offer.
The Highland region has the largest land area in the North of Scotland; it is mainly rural and offers some of the most spectacular views on the planet. The Highlands are often stated as one of the most desirable places to live in the UK due to its high standard of living, low levels of crime, quality housing and excellent education. At Fort William there is the UK's highest mountain, at Aviemore some of the UK's best skiing and not forgetting the world famous Loch Ness. Inverness is known as the capital of the Highlands, it has everything that you would expect from a modern city with culture, entertainment and shopping. The benefits of rural living are that this area of Scotland has one of the highest levels of life expectancy in the UK. In the Highlands you can enjoy rural living with the knowledge that a city or the rest of the UK isn't far away.
The Western Isles, Orkney and Shetland Islands make up the bulk of Scotland's 90 inhabited Islands. They offer a unique form of living as well as some spectacular views and history. Every inhabited or uninhabited island in Scotland is different; this can be by scenery, size or population. Some of the islands are very rural, however the larger islands can offer an almost town living. Living on the more rural Islands can often be a challenge but it is filled with benefits such as a greater standard of living and virtually no crime. Residents on the Islands are given the Distant Island Allowance to support living on the islands and there is the Air Discount Scheme to subsidise travel to and from the islands.
The type of housing available depends very much on where you are living in the North; there are the more urban Aberdeen and Inverness where you can have a city flat or a townhouse, to the more rural areas where cottages and crofting houses are more common. There are options to both buy and rent in many places with Housing Associations and private landlords.
Transport in the North is varied, they have excellent rail and road links but also ferries that allow residents and tourists access to the many islands. Aberdeen is the main airport in the North it has a wide choice of various international destinations in Europe as well as links to London and the rest of the UK. Inverness also has an airport which connects many of the Islands smaller airports to the mainland; it also serves the rest of the UK.
North Deanery page of medicine section.