Discover Our History

Discover 1000 years of history when visiting Inverness and Loch Ness.

You could spend a lifetime discovering the castles, history and attractions of Inverness and Loch Ness, but we know that you won't have that long to spare! To help you create an itinerary full to the brim of exciting historical adventures. We have gathered all the information of all the castles, historic attractions and locations you can visit in the area in one place to help.

Castles and Ruins

Urquhart Castle's ruins, one of the largest in Scotland, sits nestled on a headland with panoramic views overlooking Loch Ness - it's iconic and there is simply nothing quite like it. It is one of the most well known and visited attractions in the UK. The castle is located close to the village of Drumnadrochit where you can visit the newly renovated Loch Ness Centre, this is a fabulous immersive journey through the history of Loch Ness. There is also the Nessieland experience close by.

Urquhart Castle on Loch Ness


Cawdor Castle is a place where you can slip right into Scottish History. As well the castle tour you can explore the 3 outstanding gardens and maze, have some lunch in the Courtyard cafe, shop for souvenirs and even have a round of golf! During the summer they have some wonderful outdoor theatre productions.


Dunrobin castle is one of Britain's oldest continuously inhabited houses dating back to the early 1300s. Make sure to leave plenty of time for your visit as there is so much to take in, the castle tour, the stunning mature and blooming gardens, the fabulous falconry displays and museum. 

Photo of Dunrobin castle


Inverness Castle is currently undergoing a multi-million pound project to turn it into an incredible visitor centre that will be open in 2025. We cannot wait to be able to tell and show you more about this closer to the time.


Beauly Priory - Take yourself back in time exploring this incredibly interesting historic ruin that is set alongside the River Beauly in a pretty woodland setting surrounded by burial stones and tombs of the townspeople, some of them reaching over 200 years old.

beauly priory

Culloden Battlefield


In 1746 Bonnie Prince Charlie's Jacobite army stood at Culloden Battlefield in what would be their final attempt to restore his family to the British throne.

Walk in his footsteps and learn their story in an immersive theatre at the site of the last pitched battle on British soil. 

The Culloden Battlefield Visitor Centre, which stands beside the battlefield, is an emotive visit and features artefacts from both sides of the battle. The interactive displays reveal the background to the conflict.

Culloden Battlefield

Fort George and The Highlander's Museum


After the battle of Culloden, King George built the biggest artillery fortification in Britain, if not Europe, Fort George - to protect against further unrest. See the mighty cannons and explore the garrison buildings. Enjoy views over the Fort's ramparts scouring the Moray Firth for its resident population of bottlenose dolphins.

And whilst you are there you must visit the five star Highlanders Museum with over 50,000 artefacts - the largest military collection in Scotland outside of Edinburgh. You will take a journey following in the footsteps of the Highland soldier from just after the Battle of Culloden until the present day.

Fort George

Ancient Burial Cairns

Clava Cairns are three incredibly well preserved prehistoric cairns that were built to house the dead and are said to give many clues to the beliefs of Bronze age society. The remains of an ancient cemetery where you can explore passage graves; ring cairns, kerb cairns, standing stones and burial monuments. 

Clava cairns has experienced the “Outlander effect”, since the launch of the series, thousands of visitors have travelled from all over the world to have their photo taken by the stones where the character Claire Randall is transported back in time where she falls in love with Jamie Fraser.

The cairns are free to visit and open all year round.

Clava Cairns from the air


Corrimony Chambered Cairn - Walk amongst a circle of standing stones and discover this ancient passage grave, dating back 4,000 years. 

Situated in Glen Urquhart just past Drumnadrochit, the chambered cairn is in a remarkable state of preservation. It demonstrates the skill and planning of its builders: considerable resources went into the construction of its grave, and unlike at Clava, much of the passage’s roof survives.

Corrimony Cairns

Historic Houses

On the South side of Loch Ness you can discover the colourful history of Boleskine House, a remarkable eighteenth–century manor house that is the home of “a thousand legends” and had many stories to tell. The estate house was nearly lost to history after two devastating fires, Boleskine House and its estate is now owned and safeguarded by The Boleskine House Foundation, a registered Scottish charity.

Boleskine House is open to visitors from Spring to Autumn, where you can find out about the work the foundation are doing to restore it.

History In Inverness City Centre

There is a a lot of history with in the city centre for you to explore. Most of it can be done on foot and you will come across a lot of it just wandering the streets.

The most prominent historic feature of Inverness standing proud above the river, is the Inverness Castle. The castle is currently undergoing a major transformation into a new and exciting visitor attraction that will open in 2025. When it opens it will be an immersive experience that is a celebration of what makes the Highlands of Scotland a special place to live, work and visit.

Next door to the castle is the Inverness Museum and Art Gallery where you can explore the art, history and heritage of the Highlands! 

Inverness Castle Project

Inverness Cathedral is an unmissable historic building located by the River Ness on Ness Walk, right next door to our theatre.

Open daily from 8am - 7pm, you will always be warmly welcomed and the cathedral services are available for you to attend. Enjoy the onsite cafe with a warm brew and delicious bakes and the shop sells many related gifts and items to support the running of the building. Along side the usual services the cathedral hosts many events throughout the year.

The impressive Inverness Town House (pictured below) is an impressive building with a lifetime of history, located in the centre of Inverness. Although currently closed for tours, you are able to walk around the outside of the building.

Inverness Cathedral


Do you have ancestry that links you to Inverness? The Highland Archive centre is responsible for collecting, preserving, and making accessible, archives relating to the history of the Highlands. Their archives date from the 14th century to the present day covering the counties of Inverness, Nairn, Ross and Cromarty and Sutherland. 

You are able to visit the public search room and the family history room, and the helpful team are on hand to help with your research, you are also able to book an appointment with them. This is run by a charity and a donation is always appreciated.

Historic Walking Tours

One of the best ways to learn all about the history in Inverness City centre is to take a walking tour. You will be amazed at just how much you can discover, including all the quirky and fun stories you may not realise if you are just exploring on your own. Join the daily walks with Cath from Walk Inverness or the team at Walking tours Inverness and find out all there is to know about our wonderful historic city.

Town House

Historic Tours

Are you visiting the area without transport or want to be guided around the historic attractions to learn more about them. Well the good news is there are lots of ways that this is possible!

There are a number of businesses offering bespoke or group guided tours and there will be something suitable for everyone, here are some suggestions for you.

Wow Tours

Grant Driving Tours


Highland Explorer Tours

Happy Tours

Happy Tours

Discover more history inspiration

Historic Stories of Inverness and Loch Ness

Discover the ultimate Outlander experience in Inverness

A Journey through Time

Explore the many prehistoric sites and standing stones near Inverness.