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Pros & Cons of Living in Oban

Planning a potential move to Oban? Delve into this comprehensive article, which delves into the various pros and cons of calling Oban home.

Thinking about moving to Oban? Below we highlight some of the pros and cons of living in Oban.

Oban, a picturesque town on the west coast of Scotland, is a place that offers a unique blend of natural beauty, rich history, and a vibrant community. Known as the ‘Seafood Capital of Scotland’, Oban is a haven for food lovers and outdoor enthusiasts alike. However, like any place, living in Oban has its pros and cons. This article will delve into the advantages and disadvantages of making Oban your home.

Pros of Living in Oban

One of the most significant advantages of living in Oban is its stunning natural beauty. Nestled on the shores of a horseshoe bay, Oban offers breathtaking views of the surrounding islands and the Atlantic Ocean. The town is surrounded by hills and mountains, providing ample opportunities for hiking, biking, and other outdoor activities. For example, the popular Pulpit Hill offers panoramic views of the town and the bay, while the more challenging Beinn Lora beckons the more adventurous.

Oban is also a paradise for seafood lovers. As the ‘Seafood Capital of Scotland’, the town is home to numerous restaurants and shops offering fresh, locally sourced seafood. The Oban Seafood Hut, for example, is a popular spot among locals and tourists alike for its delicious and affordable seafood. The annual Oban Seafood Festival also attracts foodies from all over the country.

Another advantage of living in Oban is its rich history and culture. The town is home to several historical sites, including the iconic McCaig’s Tower, a Colosseum-like structure that offers stunning views of the town and the bay. The Oban War and Peace Museum provides a glimpse into the town’s history, while the Oban Distillery, one of the oldest in Scotland, offers tours and tastings for whisky enthusiasts.

Oban also boasts a strong sense of community. The town hosts numerous events throughout the year, such as the Oban Games, the Winter Festival, and the Highland Games, which bring the community together. There are also several volunteer organizations, such as the Oban Community Action Network and the Oban Hospice Volunteers, where residents can contribute to the community.

Finally, Oban’s location makes it a perfect base for exploring the surrounding islands. The town is a major ferry port, with regular services to islands such as Mull, Iona, and Staffa. These islands offer their own unique attractions, from the historic Iona Abbey to the stunning Fingal’s Cave on Staffa.

Cons of Living in Oban, Scotland

Despite its many advantages, living in Oban also has its downsides. One of the main disadvantages is the town’s remote location. While this contributes to its charm and tranquility, it also means that amenities and services are limited. For example, the nearest major hospital is in Glasgow, over two hours away by car. Similarly, shopping options are limited to local shops and a few supermarkets, with the nearest shopping mall in Glasgow.

Another disadvantage is the weather. Like much of Scotland, Oban experiences a lot of rain, even in the summer. The town also gets less sunshine than other parts of the UK, which can be a downside for those who prefer a sunnier climate.

The cost of living in Oban is also relatively high, particularly when it comes to housing. Property prices in Oban are higher than the national average, making it difficult for some people to afford a home in the town. Similarly, the cost of goods and services is also higher due to the town’s remote location.

While Oban offers a range of outdoor activities, options for indoor entertainment are limited. The town has a cinema and a leisure centre, but lacks other amenities such as a theatre or a large music venue. Those seeking a more vibrant nightlife or a wider range of cultural activities may find Oban lacking.

Finally, while Oban’s small size contributes to its charm, it can also be a disadvantage. The town has a population of just over 8,500, which means that everyone knows everyone. While this can create a strong sense of community, it can also feel claustrophobic for some people, particularly those used to living in larger cities.

Joshua WoodJoshua Wood, LPC joined Expat Exchange in 2000 and serves as one of its Co-Presidents. He is also one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. Prior to Expat Exchange, Joshua worked for NBC Cable (MSNBC and CNBC Primetime). Joshua has a BA from Syracuse and a Master's in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University. Mr. Wood is also a licensed counselor and psychotherapist.

Some of Joshua's articles include Pros and Cons of Living in Portugal, 10 Best Places to Live in Ireland and Pros and Cons of Living in Uruguay. Connect with Joshua on LinkedIn.

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