Are you searching for the Best Places to Visit in Inverness? Are you thinking of a trip to Europe and wondering what to explore in Inverness? We’ve got you covered. Inverness is considered one of the most beautiful cities in the United Kingdom. It is the largest city in Scotland’s Highlands and is a great starting point for anyone wanting to experience this beautiful, rugged region.
Don’t rush to leave the “Capital of the Highlands”. There are many great reasons to stay a while longer in the city. It is home to beautiful scenery, where the River Ness runs into the Moray Firth. There are charming streets and riverside paths to explore and many historical churches and fortresses.
You don’t even have to travel far from Inverness to see some of Scotland’s most popular tourist attractions. The famously shy Nessie sea creature, Loch Ness, can be found just 15 minutes away. Urquhart Castle has also located just a short distance from the shore of the Loch. Culloden is the most famous battleground in the Scottish Highlands, where the English established control over the country.
You can read our Inverness top things to do to learn more about the most beautiful city in Scotland.
Inverness Castle is one of the best places to visit in Inverness. This castle is a setting for one of Shakespeare’s most famous tragedies. It sits on top of the River Ness. Inverness Castle, with its baronial towers dominating the skyline, is one of the city’s most iconic landmarks.
The castle is the site of Duncan’s murder in Shakespeare’s Macbeth. You can admire the castle’s architecture from up close and enjoy stunning views of the city along with the River Ness. The Sheriff’s Court is the current function of the castle, and it is closed to the public. You can still enjoy the beautiful gardens surrounding the castle.
The castle grounds, perched high above the river, offer stunning views of the city and river. Reflect on the castle’s rich history as you take in the views and stroll through its gardens. The original castle was built in the 11th century. It was destroyed in 1746 by the Jacobite’s. William Burn, an architect, built the Neo-Norman castle that you see today.
The castle’s exterior is made of reddish sandstone. You can also see remnants of its original bastion wall. On the grounds of the castle, you will find a brass statue depicting Jacobite heroine Flora MacDonald. MacDonald was the one who helped Prince Charles Edward Stuart escape the Hanoverian army after the Battle of Culloden.
As she gazes over the valley, MacDonald is pictured with her Scottish hound at one of her feet. The inscription on the statue reads in English and Gaelic: “The preserver Prince Charles Edward Stuart (will be mentioned in history) and if courage or fidelity be virtues.
You can also start a pleasant walk along the banks and coastline of the River Ness, Caledonian Canal, and Beauly Firth from the castle. Enjoy a stroll by St. Andrew’s Cathedral, the Ness Islands, and other landmarks. Anglers may be fishing for Atlantic salmon in the river.
Inverness Castle can be found in the city center of Inverness. You can reach the grounds on foot or by bus. From the famous castle’s lawn, enjoy stunning views of Inverness.
Mighty Fort George
Fort George is located twenty minutes east of Inverness at the Firth Of Forth’s narrowest point. It was built shortly after the defeat of the Scots in the Battle of Culloden in 1746. This served to remind the Scots that London, and the English monarchy, were still in control.
It is the largest British Isles artillery fortress and measures nearly one kilometer long. The unique shape allows its defenders to fire their weapons in any direction an enemy may approach. You can still see many of these original weapons, including a large collection of cannons and other weaponry like muskets and pikes.
The museum also features exhibits that show the lives of ordinary soldiers of the time. These include a glimpse into their barracks, armory, and other highlights. A museum is also available that focuses on the Queen’s Highlanders. There’s also an information center that has a gift shop.
This attraction is very popular in Inverness. It can be busy, so book your tickets on their official website.
Address: Ardersier, Inverness, Scotland
Inverness Botanic Gardens
We always try to make it to Inverness when we are there. Inverness Botanic Gardens. Although it’s not a major attraction, we enjoy exploring the exhibits.
There’s even a cafe on site! Two main indoor areas are available: a tropical house, which is always a nice place to visit, especially in winter! A cactus house is also available. You can also find more local plants in the outdoor gardens. You can also buy plants from them.
Donations are welcome. The botanic garden is free to view. You can find out more about the opening hours and what’s happening.
One of Scotland’s most beautiful heritage attractions is a collection of majestic ruins located on the banks of the sparkling waters of Loch Ness. Take your camera with you to Urquhart Castle. The towers and crumbling walls of the castle, set against the still waters of Loch Ness and tree-covered hills, make it a great photo opportunity.
These medieval ruins offer a fascinating look into the history of the English and Scots and traces of centuries of conflict. St. Columba was said to have visited the Pictish fort in the 6th century. However, the current castle wasn’t built until the 13th century. Before the English army arrived here in 1692, the Scots and the English fought for control of the stronghold.
Learn about the castle’s history from the information desks on the castle grounds. You can view an educational film about Urquhart’s rich history at the visitor center and examine a scale model for the castle building. Cross the drawbridge to enter the castle grounds. The gatehouse is now home to an exhibit about Historic Scotland.
The dungeon is worth a stop. While exploring, think of the poor prisoners who once lived in these dark, dank quarters. You can find the remains of an ancient kiln used to dry grain and a replica trebuchet, a medieval siege weapon. For views of Loch Ness and the castle, climb Grant Tower. Visitors can view an ancient chapel from the top of Grant Tower and a dovecote.
You can enter the Great Hall to see huge celebrations in honor of military victories. Walk down to the shores to see remnants of an old blacksmith’s shop. You can enjoy a cup of coffee at the cafe while taking in the stunning views over the loch. The Loch Ness Monster is one of the most iconic mythical creatures in the entire world.
Urquhart Castle is located near the quiet villages of Drumnadrochit and Lewiston, approximately a 30-minute drive from Inverness. You can park your car at the site and shop in the gift shop. There is a bike rack for those who want to bring their bikes.
Culloden Battlefield is one of the best places to visit in Inverness. You can visit the Culloden Battlefield Visitors Centre, right beside the Battlefield. Many artifacts and interactive displays show the history of the conflict. The National Trust for Scotland manages the Culloden Battlefield.
You can also enjoy the battle in a short story at the auditorium, where all four walls serve as screens. This amazing experience is free of narratives. It is not recommended for children as it conveys the terror and noise of battle.
Witness many weapons and pieces of bullets, which were discovered on the Battlefield at Culloden Battlefield Visit Center. Leach Cottage, built on the Culloden battlefield in 1746, is a fascinating part of the Culloden Battlefield. It has been restored exactly as it was during the battle. The cottage was reportedly used as a hospital by the government troops.
Location: Culloden Moor, Inverness IV2 5EU, UK
Culloden Battlefield Highlights
- To learn more about this gruesome battle in Scotland’s history, visit the Culloden Battlefield.
- Visit the visitor center at the Battlefield to see many artifacts, including weapons used during the battle.
- Watch the interactive surround sound video of the battle.
- Look at the graves of Jacobite troops and Government soldiers as you walk on the Battlefield.
Inverness Museum and Art Gallery
Inverness is a great place for art lovers and culture buffs. If this sounds like you, you should add the Inverness Museum & Art Gallery to your itinerary.
This interesting and recently renovated facility is just steps from Inverness Castle. It features displays that highlight important works of Scottish Highlands art.
It features important artworks such as a series of portraits of the Stuart family, including one of Bonnie Prince Charlie which Oliver Cromwell had famously hung upside-down to insult him.
The museum also has a collection of Highland memorabilia and bagpipes. On-site is a cafe.
Address: Castle Wynd Inverness Scotland
Official site: www.highlifehighland.com/inverness-museum-and-art-gallery/
Eden Court Theatre
This important cultural venue offers a variety of entertainment options, including a film screening or creative classes. The Eden Court Theatre, the largest entertainment venue in Scotland Highlands, is also one of the main cultural centers in the area. You can take a drama class or view a film on the site. Or you can enjoy a meal at their excellent restaurant.
The theater was established in 1976 and underwent a two-year major renovation in the latter 20th century. It reopened in 2007 after being refurbished. The original theater building and the Victorian-era Bishop’s Palace are now part of the new design. From the banks of River Ness, you can admire beautifully landscaped gardens that lead to the theater.
The six wind towers are visible on the roof of this theater. These towers are part of the remarkable stack-assisted natural ventilating system that is unique in the country. This system reduces mechanical air conditioning and helps the theater save energy.
Pick up a program from the foyer to find out the current events. Various musicals, plays, ballets, operas, dramas, comedies, and children’s shows are presented in the theatre’s two auditoriums, the Empire Theatre and the OneTouch Theatre.
You can catch a blockbuster Hollywood movie in one of the two underground cinemas or an art-house film. The theater offers classes in animation, dance, storytelling, and music. Head to the Eden Court Restaurant, the theater’s main dining room, for lunch and dinner. This popular restaurant serves everything, from Cullen skink to three-course meals.
The Cafe at Eden Court offers lighter fare with a wide selection of pastries and scones. The glazed walkway will take you from the theater to the rebuilt Bishop’s Palace. The palace dates back to 1876 and includes a small permanent exhibition focusing on its construction and history.
The Eden Court Theatre is situated on the banks of the River Ness south of Inverness’ center. You can walk to the theater by bus or train station in the city. Inverness Airport is 20 minutes away. The box office is located right inside the front doors.
The Victorian Market
The Victorian Market is one of the best places to visit in Inverness. Shopping or visiting old markets is a great way to spend your time. Visit the Victorian market. You should add this to your Inverness bucket list. As the name implies, this covered market dates back to the 19th century. It has been home to many independent retailers since its opening.
There are many shops today, but there are also cafes and other services such as hairdressers. The market is worth a visit even if you don’t plan to buy a souvenir or grab a cup of coffee. The market is open all day, and it’s free to enter. The website has information about opening hours. However, individual retailers may have different opening times.
There are many other places to shop in Inverness. It’s also a great place to stock up if you plan on going somewhere like the Cairngorms or the North Coast. There are many places to buy groceries and outdoor supplies in Inverness.
Dating back to 1593, Abertarff House is Inverness’ oldest house. This house is the oldest in Inverness. It has seen a lot of local history, from the Jacobite Risings to the two world wars. It is located in Inverness’ middle and is owned and managed by the National Trust for Scotland.
You can visit the house to step back in history. There is also a great exhibition that explains Inverness’ 1600s life. Abertarff’s house is open to the public for free. The official website has more information and opening hours.
Clava Cairns is one of the best places to visit in Inverness. The Clava Cairns, a group of prehistoric burial cemeteries built around 4,000 years ago, is one of Inverness’s most popular attractions. It is home to many passage graves, large stones, strange stone circles, and the remains of an old chapel. Clava Cairns was built in 2000 BC. It has been used for over a thousand years.
Both the Balnauran and Milton sections can be visited. Balnauran in Clava is the main section, with three large burial cemeteries and a stone circle surrounding it.
The second section, located adjacent to the main one, is smaller and consists of a single tone and the remains of a medieval chapel.
Inverness IV2 5EU. UK
- You can visit one of Inverness’s mystical locations and see the remains of an old cemetery.
- The stones at the Clava Cairns are perfectly aligned with the setting sun in winter.
- The Excavations can also be viewed, which provide evidence that agriculture was once practiced on the site before the construction of the monuments.
- Due to its popularity, thousands of people visit Outlander every year.
- Visit the Bronze age chapel ruins, which are located on the field.
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