|Location Map ( geo)|
|Places related to the A93|
|Places related to the A939|
Ballater is a pleasant town on the banks of the River Dee in Aberdeenshire. Lying just down the river from Balmoral, and being the end of the line for the railway, it became a popular 'watering hole' for the Elite of Victorian Society, particularly whilst the Queen was in residence. Today it retains that genteel character, the streets laid out along the north bank of the river, focusing on the central square with shops and hotels in the centre. On the edge of town, a campsite and golf course also cater for the thousands of tourists who come to visit Royal Deeside each year.
The main road through the town is the A93, which follows the River Dee from Aberdeen all the way to Braemar. It still passes through the town centre, despite the more direct B972 cutting through the Pass of Ballater to the north of the town. This is a more direct route for through traffic, but is narrow in places as it climbs through the forested pass. The main route, therefore, continues to be the A93 through Ballater, and the volume of through traffic, not wishing to stop and explore Ballater, suggests that the town will not be properly bypassed anytime soon.
From the south of the town, the B971 makes the short link across Ballater Bridge over the River Dee to meet the B976 South Deeside Road. This route, formerly the A973 mirrors the A93, but on the south side of the river between Aboyne and Balmoral. To the northwest, just beyond the B972 junction, the A939 finally reaches its end, having travelled through the mountains from Nairn on the Moray Firth to the north. This route is a spectacular drive, with some high mountain passes and stunning views along the way.
|Braemar||Deeside Tourist Route|
|Aberdeen||Deeside Tourist Route|
|Tomintoul, Nairn||formerly B972, originally B970|
|link across River Dee, sometimes labelled as a spur of the B976|
|hilly route avoiding town through the Pass of Ballater|
|Braemar (A93)||formerly A973, originally B968|
|Banchory (B974)||formerly A973, originally B968|