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Expat Exchange - 7 Tips for Living in Oban 2024
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7 Tips for Living in Oban

By Betsy Burlingame

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Summary: Advice for people moving to Oban or thinking about moving there.

This is a must read if you're moving to Oban or thinking about moving there.

Oban, a charming coastal town in Scotland, is a popular destination for expats and digital nomads. With its stunning landscapes, rich history, and friendly locals, it's no wonder why so many people choose to call it home. However, living in a new place can be challenging, especially if you're not familiar with the local customs and lifestyle. Here are seven key tips to help you navigate life in Oban.

1. Embrace the Local Culture

One of the best ways to feel at home in Oban is to immerse yourself in the local culture. This means trying traditional Scottish foods, participating in local festivals, and learning about the town's history. For instance, you can visit the Oban War and Peace Museum to learn about the town's past, or attend the Oban Games, a traditional Scottish event featuring sports, music, and dance. By embracing the local culture, you'll not only enrich your own experience, but also gain a deeper appreciation for your new home.

2. Explore the Great Outdoors

Oban is known for its stunning natural beauty, so make sure to take advantage of the great outdoors. Whether you enjoy hiking, biking, or simply taking a leisurely stroll, there's no shortage of opportunities to explore. For instance, you can visit the Oban Distillery, located in the heart of the town, or take a ferry to the nearby Isle of Mull for a day of adventure. Remember to dress appropriately for the weather, as it can be unpredictable.

3. Get to Know the Neighborhoods

Oban may be a small town, but it has several distinct neighborhoods, each with its own unique charm. For instance, the town center is known for its bustling shops and restaurants, while the residential areas offer a quieter, more relaxed atmosphere. Spend some time exploring each neighborhood to find the one that suits your lifestyle and preferences. Whether you prefer the hustle and bustle of the town center or the tranquility of the residential areas, there's a neighborhood in Oban for you.

4. Try the Local Cuisine

Scotland is known for its unique and delicious cuisine, and Oban is no exception. From traditional Scottish dishes like haggis and black pudding to fresh seafood caught in the nearby waters, there's something for every palate. Some popular local restaurants include Ee-usk, a seafood restaurant with stunning views of the harbor, and The Waterfront Fishouse Restaurant, known for its fresh, locally sourced ingredients. Don't be afraid to try something new – you might just discover your new favorite dish!

5. Learn the Local Lingo

While English is widely spoken in Oban, you'll also hear locals speaking in Scots Gaelic. Although it's not necessary to become fluent, learning a few basic phrases can go a long way in making you feel more at home. Plus, it's a great way to show respect for the local culture and make new friends. There are plenty of resources available online to help you get started.

6. Make Connections

One of the best ways to feel at home in a new place is to make connections with the locals. This could be as simple as striking up a conversation with your neighbor, joining a local club or organization, or volunteering your time to a cause you care about. Remember, it's not about how many people you know, but the quality of the relationships you build.

7. Take Time to Relax

Finally, remember to take time for yourself. Living in a new place can be exciting, but it can also be overwhelming. Whether you enjoy reading a book by the harbor, taking a leisurely stroll through the town, or simply enjoying a cup of coffee at a local café, taking time to relax and enjoy your surroundings is an important part of settling into your new home.

Living in Oban, Scotland as an expat or digital nomad can be a rewarding and enriching experience. By embracing the local culture, exploring the great outdoors, getting to know the neighborhoods, trying the local cuisine, learning the local lingo, making connections, and taking time to relax, you'll not only make the most of your time in Oban, but also create memories that will last a lifetime.

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We've partnered with Homelike, to connect expats and newcomers with temporary accommodations in Scotland. If you're moving to Scotland, rent a short-term, furnished apartment or home for the first few months from Homelike and take your time figuring out the best place to live in Scotland.
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About the Author

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder and President of Expat Exchange and is one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.

Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.


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