This week we are in Portsoy. Portsoy lies halfway between Banff and Cullen and is potentially one of the oldest natural harbours in Europe. This is a picture of the Old Harbour which is situated at the bottom of the town. This was originally built back in 1550. By 1692, Sir Patrick Ogilvie, the 8th Laird of Boyne had replaced the original harbour with a new one which was built entirely of stone. If you look at the harbour you will see that the large stones are set vertically. It also has a large breakwater on the seaward side as well as a number of quays. By placing the stones this way, it was believed that there would be less risk of them being washed away by the sea!. And the Old Harbour that we see today is pretty much the same one that was built back in 1692!
Around the Old Harbour there are a number of beautiful buildings that date back to the end of the 1600s or early 1700s. If you head further round the bay you will come across the New Harbour. This was built in 1825 to cater for the high demands of the herring boom and to help with the sheer volume of trade. Unfortunately, like many of Portsoy’s neighbours, the fishing industry fell into decline throughout the 1900s.
For those who like walking, there are walks both east and west from the harbour and you can take in the wonderful clifftop views of the Moray Firth.
Portsoy is another charming little village along the Aberdeenshire Coast and definitely worthy of a visit. And one thing I would certainly recommend getting if you are visiting Portsoy… and that is an ice-cream! We took a walk from the Old Harbour up the winding streets and treated ourselves to a truly tasty ice-cream at the top of the town!