Cawdor Castle, Culloden, Fort George

There is such a lot of historical interest in the area – a history that in many ways defined the future of Scotland. Let’s start by heading for Cawdor Castle. From Nairn High St, follow the B9090 towards Cawdor. Just before you enter Cawdor village turn left up the hill and follow the signs to Cawdor Castle. If castles are your thing you’ll want to allow plenty time to explore this magical place, walk in the beautiful gardens and perhaps along the river. Here you’ll find Scottish history that you can touch and see and sense for yourself. You could spend a whole day here enjoying riverside and garden walks with lunch in the castle cafe.

Head back to the B9090 and turn left. At Clephanton village turn left onto the B9091 and follow the road until you reach the National Trust Culloden Centre. Culloden is the site of last battle on British soil. The new centre is packed with interesting activities and 360 degree immersive battle experience. You can also take a tour around the actual battlefield and learn more about the reasons for this famous battle. Once again, if you wish to fully appreciate all that this centre has to offer you may wish to spend a whole day here. Here’s the story of events the night before the battle when many Jacobites marched to Nairn.

If you have time to spare you will not regret a brief visit to the Bronze Age burial site at Clava. Turn right out of the Culloden Centre and then take the next right. Follow the road for about a mile and then take a right to the Cairns. Managed by Historic Scotland, free entry.

Return back up the hill to the main road and if you wish, drive on to Fort George, an amazing fort built after the battle of Culloden. At the main road, turn right. Head for the village of Croy and take the B9006. Cross the A96 and drive through Ardersier to reach Fort George. Apart from enjoying the history and atmosphere of this unique place with its many ramparts, you might even see the dolphins in the Moray Firth. For a different route home, leave Fort George and take the first left along a single track road. Follow this road for a few miles until you arrive at a T-junction. Turn left and follow this road to the edge of Nairn where it joins the A96. Turn left to Nairn.