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5 Things You Have to do in Inverness

Inverness is steeped in history and has a range of things to do from exploring castles and burial ruins, to visiting Loch Ness and the Caledonian Canal. As well as showing off its historical side, Inverness has plenty to suit those with more contemporary tastes. We've pulled together a small selection of just some of the things you can do when you visit. 

Loch Ness - Loch Ness is a must-see location for anyone visiting Inverness, with its beautiful scenery and rich history. You can visit the Loch Ness Centre and Exhibition to find out more about the place, or take a cruise down the loch and see Urquhart Castle. Who knows, you may even catch a sighting of Nessie!

Eden Court Theatre - Since its opening in 1976, Eden Court has been providing the region with a range of performing art including music, theatre, films, classical and contemporary dance, and children's entertainment. Following an extensive upgrade to its facilities, Eden Court became one of the best equipped arts centres in Scotland. 

Inverness Museum and Art Gallery - As well as exploring Scotland's rich and often tumultuous history, the museum and gallery offers a place to see contemporary arts and crafts from local, national and international artists. They've also recently refurbished their café so you can have a tea and scone after a wander round the exhibits. 

Eastgate Shopping Centre - To see the high street favourites under one roof, Eastgate Centre is the place to go to. If you fancy a touch of the traditional in your shopping trip though, the Victorian Market offers many shops specialising in goods and services you won't find on the high street, housed within traditional Victorian architecture. 

Inverness Botanic Gardens - A great year round destination, the gardens has much to offer from glasshouses with a variety of tropical plants, to the outdoor garden displaying mixed trees and shrubs, heathers, herbs, seasonal and mixed plantings. 

Have some suggestions for fun things to do in Inverness? Share your recommendations with the community below! 


  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] ✭✭✭✭
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  • FunkyEllas_TravelFunkyEllas_Travel VisitScotland Ambassador ✭✭
    The Clootie Well in Munlochy in the Black Isle is fascinating! For decades people have visited to tie rags to the trees surrounding the well, it's thought to heal your ills. A bizarre and quirky sight to say the least!
    Nicola Holland
    Scottish Travel writer/blogger.
    Ask me anything about Scotland including eating and drinking, travelling with the family, history, the cities and the countryside.
    You can follow me here
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  • VisitScotlandJoanneVisitScotlandJoanne Member, Moderator, VisitScotland Staff
    Walking along the River Ness towards the Ness Islands is a beautiful way to take in the sights of the city. You'll also pass St. Andrew's Cathedral along the way which is open to the public daily and is definitely worth a visit - you also get some great views of Inverness Castle from this side of the river, so it's a good photo opportunity!
  • AmyNessAmyNess Member ✭✭
    edited June 2016
    I agree @VisitScotlandJoanne - I love Ness Islands. They are so unique and feel like worlds away from the main city but are actually only a short walk up river. You can do a lovely loop past the Cathedral and Eden Court to the Botanic Gardens (there's a nice cafe!), then cross the river via Ness Islands and take in Bellfield Park on the way back on the other side of the river. 

    My other favourite scenic walk, or cycle, within Inverness is along the Caledonian Canal - great for bikes as well as walking. Cycling south to Dochgarroch is lovely, but I particularly like heading north up to Muirtown Basin and on to Clachnaharry Sea Lock where the canal meets the Beauly Firth. Great views across to Kessock Bridge, the Black Isle and Ben Wyvis massif. And potential to see dolphins :)
  • AmyNessAmyNess Member ✭✭
    edited June 2016
    If you're looking to see Loch Ness, don't forget the south side - it's a hidden gem. This is the other side from the Loch Ness centres, Urquhart Castle and cruises. Both sides are great, and worth a visit, but they feel very different.

    The south side is generally much quieter. It has more mystery to me, with smaller communities, minor roads, and more opportunities to get down to the Loch side. A South Loch Ness Trail was launched in 2011 running the whole length and there are lovely views and walks all along. 

    Dores is the closest spot to Inverness for looking at/ padding in Loch Ness. There's a pebble beach to explore and Dores Inn for some sustenance. There are also 'monster' views down the Loch as you are looking head on onto it. The road that climbs up after Dores has fantastic views.

    Further south, there's also Foyers which has the Falls of Foyers waterfall, tea rooms, and access to the Loch.

    You would need a car to really explore on your own time, but there are oodles more lovely spots and communities all the way down the Loch.
  • fishyprofishypro Member ✭✭✭
    If you are in Inverness and need a spot of Lunch or an Evening meal I can strongly recommend Rocpool restaurant. The food is to die for and the quality is amazing. The presentation is excellent and the prices are still on the ground.
    Best regards
  • VisitScotlandAngelaVisitScotlandAngela Member, Administrator, Moderator, VisitScotland Staff
    Whin Park in Inverness is a favourite in my family and on a nice day its a great place to have a picnic and let the kids run round in the play park.  They were totally impressed with the Helter Skelter! :D There's also a boating pond where you can hire a rowing boat and travel around a small island. Unfortunately, we didn't have time to take a trip on the Ness Islands Railway - a miniature locomotive train that goes on a short journey around the Ness Islands passing some colourful sculptures.   It looked fun so we must visit again soon.  Definitely a great place to visit with kids!  

  • ScathachScathach Member ✭✭
    If you are a bookworm (like me) you can't miss Leakey's - the second largest second-hand bookstore in Scotland (The first one is in Wigtown and it's paradise).
    It's inside an old church and there are books everywhere. 
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