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17 Things That We Identify As Dundee

Dundee - oor home. (Picture: Shahbaz Majeed / Frame Focus Capture Photography)

Dundee has a lot of unique features that makes it stand out as a city. So today, Dundee Culture looks at 17 things we identify as Dundee, the things that make us unique and special.


Before Dundee had a major rejuvenation, the city was mainly known for the three J's.

The first is jute, which is in reference to Dundee's once bustling jute industry which used to employ a lot of Dundonians, especially women. As a result, Dundee was nicknamed 'She Town', with Dundonian women


The second J is jam, which is associated with the production of marmalade.

This is particularly as a result of the renowned Dundee Marmalade, the brain child of Janet Keiller who used Seville oranges to produce the famous recipe which has became synonymous with the city.


Dundee's third J is journalism, with the city being home to "The Tully", the nickname of our local newspaper, the Dundee Evening Telegraph which was first published in the city back in 1877. It was later acquired by DC Thomson in 1905 who also print The Courier.

The Evening Telegraph has kept Dundee on all the news and current affairs happening in the city for 147 years and has become part of Dundee life day in and day out.

Dundee dialect words and phrases

Teckle, cundie, dowp and fleg are just four words that form part of the wider Dundee dialect.

Dundee dialect is very strong and even other Scots in other parts of Scotland can get confused by our use of dialect words and phrases.

Dundee Law

The Dundee Law is the tallest point in the city. The Law is what remains of a volcanic sill and today offers locals and visitors a fantastic 360 degree view of Dundee.

It is the most prominent landmark on the city skyline and is a favourite among Dundonians.

The Beano

The Beano is the world's longest children's magazine and has been published in Dundee since 1938 by DC Thomson.

The Beano is the home of Dennis the Menace, the notorious rebel in red and his sidekick, Gnasher. The Beano is the world's best selling comic book series outwith Japan and we are so proud that this comic is made here.

McManus Galleries

The McManus is a prominent art gallery and museum located in the heart of Dundee, Scotland. Housed in a stunning Gothic Revival-style building, it offers visitors a diverse range of exhibits spanning art, history, and culture.

From ancient artifacts to contemporary artworks, the McManus showcases Dundee's rich heritage and creativity through engaging displays and interactive exhibits. It serves as a cultural hub for locals and tourists alike, providing insight into the city's past while also celebrating its vibrant artistic community.

V&A Dundee

Scotland's design museum, the V&A Dundee, has been the stand out attraction for Dundee. Opening in 2018, it has become an iconic landmark which has wowed many from here at home to millions around the world.

It has been notable for helping bring the city to international attention and has been at the centrepiece of Dundee's beautiful waterfront.

Cox's Stack

Dundee's tallest standing landmark, the Cox's Stack, stands as a reminder of Dundee's jute days.

Although it can be attributed as a symbol of the harsh working conditions in the jute mills, at the same time, it is a beautiful design and showed off Dundee's strength as an industrial powerhouse in the 19th and 20th centuries.

Our sporting culture and achievements

Dundee FC and Dundee United FC are two of the city's main football clubs. Both are friendly rivals and have a unique thing in common - their grounds being two of the closest in Europe.

Dundee is also home to the Dundee Stars and the Dundee Tigers, two of the city's ice hockey clubs.

Dundee is also home to some of the greatest ice skaters in the UK. Being the base of Anastasia Vaipan-Law and Luke Digby, and the recently retired Natasha Mackay who became British champion on six consecutive occasions.

And we can't forget about the McColgan mother and daughter duo, Liz and Eilish, who have been nothing but inspirations to the athletic world over their achievements.

RRS Discovery

Dundee's tagline is literally the "City of Discovery" and it is mostly down to the incredible ship berthed at the Dundee waterfront.

The RRS Discovery was built in the city back in 1901 as the world's first purpose scientific research ship, and was responsible for helping discover Antarctica was continent, and also conducting the world's first climate change research.

Tay Bridges

The Tay Bridges, notably the Tay Rail Bridge, are emblematic of Dundee's engineering prowess and historical significance. Completed in 1887, the Tay Rail Bridge's innovative design showcased Dundee's engineering excellence, spanning the Firth of Tay with lattice girders and cast iron piers.

We all sadly know the tragedy that struck in 1879 when the original bridge collapsed during a storm, resulting in significant loss of life. The subsequent reconstruction stands as a testament to Dundee's resilience.

Today, the Tay Rail Bridge remains a vital transportation link and a poignant reminder of both triumph and tragedy, symbolizing Dundee's industrial heritage and engineering ingenuity in a single iconic structure.

Green buses

No matter wherever you are in Dundee, you will notice Dundee's big green buses, operated by Xplore Dundee.

The green buses are the natural successor to Dundee's old tram service and helps Dundonians get from A to B, when the traffic isn't bad, of course.

Video game development

Dundee is the video game capital of Europe, having been the birthplace of Grand Theft Auto and Lemmings, and is where the console versions of Minecraft.

Dundee is also the birthplace of the very popular ZX Spectrum which was produced and sold in the 1980s, and is often credited as a vital point in Dundee's journey in becoming a video game powerhouse.

Dundee is also the location of Abertay University, which in 1997, introduced the world's first degree in computing games design. Since then, it has become a hotspot for aspiring game developers.

Life sciences sector

The University of Dundee has been a major part of the city for a very long time, and its life sciences sector has went from strength to strength.

In the last few years, the university has managed to find methods to eliminate cancer cells, find the cells that cause us to age, and notably known for finding ways to treat Parkinson's disease.

Dundee Cake

Dundee Cake holds a cherished place in the heart of the city, weaving itself into the very fabric of Dundee's identity.

This beloved confection is more than just a dessert; it symbolizes Dundee's rich cultural heritage and historical significance. With its origins rooted in the city's vibrant culinary traditions

Sunny weather

Dundee is Scotland's sunniest city, clocking more hours of sunshine than any other Scottish city.

Although the weather can be hit and miss, the city does bask in a lot of sunshine, so why not fancy yourself a city break and see what this amazing city has to offer.


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