Discover Inverness, the 'Gateway to the Highlands'
Jul 05, 2021 · By Katie Shaw
Straddling the mighty River Ness and rubbing shoulders with world-famous Loch Ness, the vibrant Scottish city of Inverness has a whole lot to offer.Read more
The base for many of our Scotland tours, Inverness lies at the north end of the Great Glen where the River Ness flows into the Moray Firth on the country's east coast. Known as 'the capital of the Highlands', Inverness has been a focal point for all travel, trade and communication through the Highlands for hundreds of years. Believed to have been founded by King David in the 12th century, it is known that successive forts and castles were built in the area at about that time. Yet these were either destroyed by fire or razed to the ground during one of the many conflicts that affected and involved Inverness. The red sandstone castle that stands proudly on the River Ness was built during the 1830s, following a significant period of economic boom in Inverness and the surrounding region. Inverness Castle was designed to house the town courts and administrative buildings.
Exploring historic Inverness
In 1822 the Caledonian Canal was created, and during the latter part of the 19th century the railways began to arrive in Inverness. Links then connected the town with Perth, Aberdeen, Kyle of Lochalsh, Wick and Thurso - lines which remain operational to this day - and the town began to expand rapidly as the Highlands' major transport hub. Today, Inverness is a thriving city with a bustling, modern centre and a multitude of attractions.
As well as the castle, there is the grand St Andrew's Cathedral, which dates back to 1869. The bell still chimes on the hour. There is also the Inverness Museum & Art Gallery, which tells the fascinating story of the Highlands through a range of impressive exhibits. The best way to get acquainted with the city is by taking a stroll along the river, as many of Inverness' charms are apparent here.