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lafalott Inverness - A travel report by Katrina
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Inverness,  United Kingdom - flag United Kingdom
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lafalott's travel reports

Inverness, the Capital of the Highlands

  14 votes
Inverness, also known as the gateway to the highlands is the only large town in the region. It is the perfect starting point for day trips throughout the highlands or farther up the east coast with access to the train station and bus station.

River Ness and Inverness Castle
River Ness and Inverness Castle
The town is positioned on either side of the River Ness, the east end of Loch Ness. It is small so walking is very convenient. There is a mix of the old character buildings that you see in Edinbugh and newer, less notable buildings. Since it is located near the water it is very windy and the weather changes very rapidly and frequently.

This town was my first taste of Scotland and the first thing I noticed and was completely amazed with was...the colour of the grass. It is SO green! Maybe it has been a long Swedish winter for me, but the colour of the grass just stood out at me.

Scottish people are the most friendly and helpful people. We did not meet one person that was not willing to help us with directions or recommendations. The people we met were a very happy bunch!

Favourite spots:
Church and cemetary
Church and cemetary
Walking along the river you will find many of the older buildings, churches, cemetaries, parks and the Inverness Castle. The castle is nothing special, it is too modern if you ask me, but the view along the river is very pretty. On a clear day you can see mountains covered in snow on the horizon. There is also Ness Island in the middle of the river. We found a cemetary that looked amazing in the late afternoon light (dark clouds looking stormy). This was a first for me in Scotland, finding cemetaries that were creepy and beatiful all at once.

What's really great:
Nessie exhibition
Nessie exhibition
Easy access to other places from Inverness with the trains and busses. If you want to travel really cheaply, try CityLink busses. If you book at least 2 days ahead of time online, there are discounted fairs abailable. However, I would suggest booking sooner in order to get these discounts because they run out quickly. For example, we took a train to Inverness because one of my friends gets car sick, but with CityLink if I had booked a week before the bus would have cost 1 pound! (versus 20pounds for the train!) Take day trips out of Inverness, and if you are using the bus buy a raound trip same-day ticket because they are cheaper. There is also a bus company called 'Magic Bus' that is worth checking out.

We went to a town called Drumnadrochit for the day. It is not a very exciting town, but tourists flock there for the Nessie exhibitions. Urquhart Castle is just outside of town and there are plenty of hikes outside of town to see the countryside

mountains around Drumnadrochit
mountains around Drumnadrochit
Drumnadrochit is a good day trip. Here, if you are interested you can see the Loch Ness exhibition center where you can learn about Nessie (sorry cant tell you what its like, I didnt go!). Urquhart castle ruins are just outside of town on the banks of Loch Ness. We took a hike during the afternoon to Divach Falls. We got some nice views of the surrounding mountains and the water, and saw a ton of sheep! If you visit their information center they can give you a map of all the hikes they have mapped out in the area.

We stayed at the Inverness Youth Hostel. It was very clean and some of the staff was very helpful, while others were not so much...There is a kitchen for guests to use as well as quiet rooms and a TV room. It is a 15min walk into town.

Other recommendations:
The most helpful tourist information (apparently! they were extremely helpful for me) in Scotland is located in Inverness. It is at the base of the hill to the castle. They can show you where and how to get anywhere you want! They also have a bookstore.

Published on Sunday May 14th, 2006

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Thu, Sep 07 2006 - 10:06 PM rating by mrscanada

I've never been to Scotland so I enjoyed traveling with you through your review

Mon, May 15 2006 - 11:21 AM rating by st.vincent

I assume you didn't meet "Nessie" but you seem to have encountered some typical Scottish weather.

Mon, May 15 2006 - 06:50 AM rating by marianne

This was a good read especially because it is a long time ago that I was in Inverness. We also stayed in the Youth hostel and I wonder if it is still the same place. ( I was in Inverness in 1964). You are quite right about the wind, early September was VERY cold, I needed four blankets to stay warm (had to take them from other beds which were fortunately not taken. I like your information about the buses that is really very good to know.

Sun, May 14 2006 - 11:57 AM rating by terje

Hi Katrina! ALways good to see people appreciate the places they have been.

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