A walk along the river Ness, the “Ness Walk”, is highly recommended. The source of the river is, of course, the world famous Loch Ness, which was created by the erosion of the “Great Glen Fault”, which runs from south-west Scotland to Inverness and almost splits the country in two parts. The river flows into the sea near Inverness (the Moray Firth), famous for Scotland’s largest pod of Dolphins.
Inverness, the capital of the Highlands, was a Royal Burgh in the county of Inverness-Shire until 1957, when it was recognised as one of the 7 cities of Scotland. The population is estimated to be around 50.000. Street names and road signs in Inverness and surroundings are written in English and Gaelic. Until the 18th Century Gaelic was the official language of the Highlands, including Inverness. But after the battle of Culloden in 1746 the use of Gaelic was outlawed by the English. Even though the language was still used privately in the Highlands and Islands, the official language was now English and, as the Gaelic language went underground, in the 19th Century it lost more and more in importance and wasn’t even taught in schools. Whilst in 1891 30,47% of the population of Inverness still spoke Gaelic, this declined now to a mere 4,8%. However, this is still 5x as many Gaelic speakers as in the rest of Scotland.
In the 11th Century Inverness was ruled by King MacBeth, made famous through William Shakespeare. He lived in the Inverness Castle, built by Malcolm III, which was used as a prison during the Jacobite uprising. The present day castle, made entirely out of red sand stone was built in 1836, to replace the original castle. It overlooks the city and is used as a seat of government. In front of Inverness Castle stands a statue of Flora MacDonald, who helped Bonnie Prince Charlie, “The Young Pretender”, in 1746 to escape the mainland to Isle of Skye, noted in the famous “Skye Boat Song”.
Outlander fans, who want to discover the Capital of the Highlands, like Claire and Frank did, will find no resemblance of the Inverness shown in the series. Because of its historical appearance Falkland was used as Inverness in the 1st and 4th series. Here Claire and Frank spent their second honeymoon, where they stayed in Mrs. Baird’s B&B- the Covenanter Hotel in Falkland. This is also where the scene was shot in which Jamie’s ghost looks up to Claire’s window, whilst Frank drives back to the B&B in the rain. In the 4th series Roger appears in the same place, when he is looking for Brianna. In the 2nd series of Outlander, Falkland’s little cobbled streets where used as Paris in 1746.
Relive the well-known television series by visiting film locations on a guided tour
Visit Scotland’s most popular distilleries, comfortable by train
Enjoy self-guided hiking and travelling by train