#ThrowBackThursday: Inverness, Scotland

Being finished with our ten day Euro-trip posts, I decided to continue with the tour theme and give you some tips on a few must-sees while in Scotland.

Edinburgh from the plane

Edinburgh from the plane

A few years back a friend and I decided to go explore the mighty land of William Wallace and the slippery mythical creature that the Haggis is… We had a week, so we set on doing some basic exploring. Flying to Edinburgh with Easyjet (cheap direct flights from many European cities) and directly catch a First Rail train (found through The Train Line) up to the Highlands.

First Stop:

Inverness is the relatively small but lively capital of the Scottish Highlands, located up north where river Ness ends (as it’s Scottish Gaelic name means literally “Mouth of the River Ness” ). There’s no city higher up north in Great Britain and it’s surrounded by famous medieval battlefields. Inverness is adorable both in size and in character. But hey,don’t forget to pack a jacket and umbrella, the weather is rather unpredictable.

Inverness, Scotland
Inverness, Scotland
Inverness, Scotland
Inverness, Scotland
Inverness, Scotland
Inverness, Scotland
Inverness, Scotland
Inverness, Scotland

What to do while in Inverness:
First of all you should take a stroll by the river and try to find Nessie Island. It is a short peaaceful walk but at the destination a lovely little surprise awaits.
Nessie Island, Inverness, Scotland
Nessie sculpture in Nessie Island, Inverness, Scotland
We found Nessie!
Nessie Island, Inverness, Scotland
Nessie Island, Inverness, Scotland
If you are lucky to come at the right time (a.k.a. Summer) make sure to take a peek at the famous Highland Games.

And at any time of the year you may run into bagpipers, stop what you are doing and listen. It’s amazing the strength, technique, and overall skills it requite to play the bagpipes. Worth the wait! 

Day trips from Inverness:

As I mentioned above, Inverness is in a prime location for history buffs. Not far off you can visit the grounds where two very important historical battles took place. Two battles that changed the course of Scottish history. 
First the 11th century battle of Blàr nam Fèinne against the Norsmen, to the southwest of the city in The Aird.

And the 18th century battle of Culloden which took place in the Drummossie Moor (or Culloden Moor, located about 3mi. east from Inverness easily reachable by bus). These Moor saw the final comfrontation between the Jacobites of Charles Edward Stuart (fighting to bring the House of Stuart back to power) and the troops of the House of Hanover (defending the title) in April1746. This battle was short and bloody, leaving both sides enormously diminished. While on the site you can see the tombstones from all different clans and families along the path. 

It’s a peaceful area perfect to reflect on our history, life or whatever comes to mind. And the museum is really informative.
Culloden Battlefield Grounds, Inverness, Scotland
Culloden Battlefield Grounds, Inverness, Scotland
Culloden Battlefield Grounds, Inverness, Scotland
Culloden Battlefield Grounds, Inverness, Scotland
Culloden Battlefield Grounds, Inverness, Scotland
Once you are done with history, I’d recommend taking in the wonderful nature around you and visiting Culrain (a bit further up north, about 2 hour train ride from Inverness). During our trip we stayed there overnight in a castle, unfortunately it is no longer a hostel but if you have about 1.5million pounds laying around you can buy the place, including the loch and grounds around it (if it wasn’t for the midgis!!)
Culrain, Scottish Highlands
Culrain, Scottish Highlands
Culrain, Scottish Highlands
Culrain, Scottish Highlands
And we arrived to our humble abode…
Culrain, Scottish Highlands
Culrain, Scottish Highlands
Culrain, Scottish Highlands
Culrain, Scottish Highlands
Now I know how Sean Connery must feel when he gets home after a long day at work 😉
Culrain, Scottish Highlands
Culrain, Scottish Highlands
Culrain, Scottish Highlands
Culrain, Scottish Highlands
Panoramic view of Culrain, Scottish Highlands

If you are lucky you may even spot one of these beauties!

Next week we’ll be heading down towards Forth Williams and Loch Ness. How exciting! 
Have you visited the Highlands? What would you recommend? Share your tips down below on the comments!
Cheers!
-H
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