10 Things to do in Dundee

Here are 10 things to do in Dundee, Scotland. Dundee is a small city in North Eastern Scotland. It is on the east coast mainline with direct trains to London via Edinburgh, Newcastle and York. Direct flights from London Heathrow. There is an express bus from Edinburgh airport direct to the city centre.

Below is a list of ten attractions with entry fees. 10 free things to do in Dundee coming soon.

10 things to do in Dundee

V&A Design Museum

This waterfront museum has two galleries the larger hosts temporary exhibits for which there is an admission charge. As this hall is a big open space the “rooms” can be formed around the exhibits. Some people even thought their first exhibition about cruise liners looked better in Dundee than it did at the original V&A in London.

For frequent visitors to the V&A there are various membership deals offering free entry to the temporary exhibitions

RRS Discovery

If you are interested in polar exploration the RRS Discovery is a must see. It was launched in 1901 and finally returned to Dundee in 1986. It opened at Discovery Point in 1993.

This ship transported Captain Scott and Ernest Shackleton on their first expedition to the Antarctic. It was one of the strongest wooden ships ever built and it survived two winters trapped in the ice.

This attraction has three parts, the ship laid out as it would have been for its exhibitions. Exhibits about the polar exploration in Discovery Quay. Discovery Dome which features a computer generated audiovisual display of Dundee in 1901 with a view of present day Dundee at the end.

Take an open top bus tour

This hourly open top bus tour tour links many of the main points of interest in Dundee with an interesting recorded commentary. Highlights include the panoramic view from near the summit of Dundee Law and crossing the Tay Road Bridge, weather and traffic permitting. Sit on the left side of the top deck for the best views.

Dates of operation Friday 29th of March – Sunday 1st of September. The first bus departs from near the V&A at 10.00 AM last bus departs at 5.00 PM.

More information and a map here


HMS Unicorn

The HMS Unicorn was built at the Chatham Royal Dockyard and launched in 1824 so she will be celebrating her 200th anniversary of her launch this year.

This 46-gun frigate has never fired her guns during conflict and has spent nearly 150 years in Dundee. Firstly as a training ship for the Royal Naval Reserves and since 1975 she has welcomed visitors aboard as a floating museum.

Open Tuesday to Sunday: 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM (last entry 3:30 PM)

Verdant Works

This museum is run by the same charity as RRS Discovery so if you are interested in both attractions, joint tickets are available which will save you money.

The short walk from the city centre is worth it if you have an interest in one of Dundee former major exports jute. Textile manufacture was once a major industry in Dundee. Jute is a coarse but strong fabric which was usually made into sacks.

Verdant Works shows how these textile mills worked and includes working machinery. A great example of Dundee’s industrial heritage.

More things to do in Dundee

Here are five more attractions

Dundee Museum of Transport

This museum about transportations includes not only road transportations such as trams and trucks but also a model of a Fifie the ferries that used to transport vehicles from Dundee to Fife before the Tay Road Bridge was opened in 1966.

This museum is open 6 days a week from 10.00 AM – 4.30 PM closed on Tuesdays.  They have ambitious plans to relocate to a much larger site in a former tram shed in Stobswell.

Dundee Science Centre

A hand-ons science museum for children of all ages.

We are Exploring is for younger children. They can play in the tree house and slide down a chute or get creative in the Building Zone or get the hands wet in the Water Works feature.

We are inventingBring your imagination to life, design and build your inventions.

Plus much more

Dundee Contemporary Arts

The DCA includes a shop full of unique gifts from local artists, galleries, a print studio, a cafe bar and a two screen cinema showing both blockbusters and independent releases.

The Rep Theatre

Or more formerly the Dundee Repertory Theatre is home to both the Dundee Rep and Scottish Dance Theatre. This venue doesn’t just host plays but also comedians and singers.

Dundee Botanical Gardens

A short bus journey along the Perth Road will take you to Dundee University’s botanic gardens which are 9.5 hectares in size. For comparison Slessor Gardens is 1.07 Hectares

Their collection includes a wide range of plant life not only indigenous British plants but also important plants from across the world. There are trees, shrubs, tropical and temperate glasshouses, and a water and a herb garden.

So there you have it

10 things to do in Dundee

With eight of them less than a mile from the city centre. If you enjoy walking and want to know more about the city of Dundee why not join me for a guided walking tour.

There are four tours to choose from:

The Dundee Railway Tour

Hear about how the arrival of railways changed Dundee. Four stations, two tunnels, two bridges and a lot of land

The Dundee Gaming Tour

Despite it’s many valuable contributions to the computer gaming industry.
Dundee does not have a gaming museum but it does have tour. Hear about ZX Spectrums, Lemmings, GTA and Minecraft which all have strong links to Dundee.

The Dundee 2.0 Tour

This guided walk is full of fun facts and amusing anecdotes about the ever changing Dundee waterfront. What’s gone, What’s been done + what’s yet to come.

The Dundee 3E Tour – Energy, Engineering + Exploration

Let’s talk about Jackup rigs + offshore windfarms, how they built the Tay Road Bridge + V&A Museum and Dundee Railway Station, and  the adventures of the RRS Discovery.

Dundee Photo Walks