Free Activities in Inverness

Inverness beckons many a traveller with its irresistible blend of natural beauty and cultural richness. But you don’t need to be lord of the land to afford to have fun there. There’s a multitude of free activities to immerse oneself in. Recognised as the gateway to the Highlands and the custodian of countless tales of the legendary Loch Ness Monster, Inverness is more than just a city—it’s an experience waiting to be discovered! SafeKab breaks down some of the best free activities in Inverness to help make your visit to Inverness memorable.

Cultural Riches: Inverness’s Heritage Hotspots

Leakey’s Bookshop: A Treasure Trove for Bibliophiles

Where: Church Street, Inverness IV1 1EY
When: 10 am to 5.30 pm, Monday to Saturday
What’s Special: As Scotland’s largest secondhand bookshop, Leakey’s is a haven for book lovers. Established in 1979, this family-run gem houses an eclectic collection of preloved books, intriguing prints, and maps. The cosy ambience invites visitors to unwind and connect with Inverness’s literary community.

The Victorian Market: A Nostalgic Shopping Experience

Where: Academy Street, Inverness IV1 1JN
When: 8 am to 8 pm daily
What’s Special: Step back in time at the Victorian Market, a 19th-century shopping destination hosting over 30 independent businesses. From unique gifts and souvenirs to the tempting chocolate shop and the vibrant Market Hall with its street food and live music, the market promises a delightful shopping experience away from the commonplace.

Where: Castle Wynd, Inverness IV2 3EB
When: 10 am to 5 pm, Tuesday to Saturday
What’s Special: Dive into the rich tapestry of Highland history at IMAG. Located at the base of Castle Hill, this cultural hotspot showcases historical artefacts, compelling artworks, and the creations of local artists through permanent and temporary exhibitions. With a charming gift shop and café, it’s an ideal spot for cultural indulgence.

Spiritual and Natural Escapes

Inverness Cathedral: A Sanctuary of Serenity

Where: Ardross Street, Inverness IV3 5NN
When: 9 am to 4 pm daily
What’s Special: The Cathedral Church of Saint Andrew is not only a place of worship but a masterpiece of Gothic architecture. Admire the awe-inspiring arches and detailed stonework as you explore this spiritual haven. Donations are welcome to aid in the preservation of this historic edifice.

Ness Islands: A Natural Retreat

Where: Great Glen Way, Inverness IV2 4QS
When: Open 24 hours
What’s Special: Victorian footbridges lead you to the serene Ness Islands, nestled in the River Ness. A haven for local flora and fauna, the islands offer a peaceful escape with sculptures to admire, fishermen to observe, and trails to wander, making it a pristine natural attraction in Inverness.

Inverness Botanic Gardens: A Floral Paradise

Where: Bught Lane, Inverness IV3 5SS
When: 10 am to 4 pm daily
What’s Special: The Botanic Gardens are a tranquil oasis on the city’s fringe, boasting a tropical house, wildflower meadow, formal gardens, and a cactus house. The Secret Garden, a project championed by adults with special needs, transforms wasteland into a thriving space of productivity and beauty.

Family-Friendly and Recreational Gems

Whin Park: An Adventure for All Ages

Where: Bught Road, Inverness IV3 5TH
When: Open 24 hours
What’s Special: Whin Park offers a plethora of activities for families, especially when the Scottish weather is agreeable. With diverse play equipment, a boating lake, and the Ness Islands railway, it’s a perfect spot for picnics, boating, or simply enjoying the outdoors.

Parkrun: Stay Active in the Highlands

Where: Torvean, Inverness IV3 5TD
When: 9.30 am Saturday & Sunday
What’s Special: Maintain your fitness routine by joining the locals for a free timed 5km run at Torvean Parkrun, every Saturday morning. With a junior park run also available on Sunday mornings, it’s an inclusive way to enjoy the scenic outdoors and engage with the community.

Caledonian Canal: A Pathway to Scenic Splendor

Where: Torvean, Inverness IV3 5TD
When: 9.30 am to 11 am Saturday
What’s Special: The Caledonian Canal offers a flat and picturesque route for walkers and cyclists, providing an ideal setting for a stroll or ride. With detailed guides available and the option to start from various points, it’s a perfect way to explore the natural beauty surrounding Inverness.

Beyond Inverness: Discoveries Around the Highlands

Loch Ness – Dores: In Pursuit of Nessie

Where: Loch Ness
When: Open 24 hours
What’s Special: Dores Beach is your gateway to the legendary Loch Ness. Easily accessible by car or bus, it offers a tranquil beach setting with pine-scented air, scenic walks, and picnic spots. Keep your eyes peeled—you might just spot Nessie!

Culloden Battlefield: Echoes of History

Where: Culloden Moor, Inverness IV2 5EU
When: Open 24 hours
What’s Special: Immerse yourself in the poignant history of the Battle of Culloden at this legendary site. While there’s no charge for visiting the battlefield, the Culloden Visitor Centre offers a profound narrative through its exhibits (admission fees apply).

Clava Cairns: A Journey Back in Time

Where: Inverness IV2 5EU
When: Open 24 hours
What’s Special: Explore the ancient world of the Bronze Age at Clava Cairns. This site features circular chamber tombs and offers a unique glimpse into Scotland’s distant past. It’s a captivating destination for history enthusiasts and fans of the Outlander series.

Inverness, with its enchanting mix of cultural, historical, and natural attractions, offers something for everyone. Whether you’re a culture enthusiast, a nature lover, or a history buff, the city and its surroundings provide a rich tapestry of experiences, all without burdening your wallet. Embrace the heart of the Highlands and uncover the myriad treasures that Inverness has to offer.

Embrace Affordable and Safe Travel with SafeKab

Inverness welcomes you with open arms, offering a wealth of experiences that won’t strain your budget. By using SafeKab’s unique service that blends cashless travel, safety measures, local knowledge, fixed fares and reliable and affordable taxi services, you can make the most of your time in Inverness while keeping your expenses in check. Explore the captivating attractions, savour local flavours, and immerse yourself in the rich culture of the Highlands, all with the assurance of SafeKab’s commitment to your safety and comfort.

Book A SafeKab: Take the #safetyfirst option and order a safe secure taxi to take you to and from your destinations. When booking with SafeKab you can be sure of a safe ride home after a safe day or night out!

Our safety features include:

  • The Power to Choose your driver, vehicle and price you pay for your ride. Giving you full control and transparency over your journey.
  • Unique Safety Code for you and your driver so you know you’re in the right vehicle.
  • Journey Monitoring so you can see where you are, the road home and also share this information with a loved one.
  • A Panic Button is embedded in our app so if you feel vulnerable at any time, you can press the button and notify both SafeKab’s local cab office and a loved one.
  • SafeKab Credit means that you don’t need to carry money or a card to get your ride home. Money can be deposited in your in-app wallet so there is always cash to get you home after a great night out.

Use SafeWalk If You’re Walking Alone: If you’re walking home, please take advantage of SafeKab’s new ‘SafeWalk’ feature.

SafeWalk allows you to share your travels with a loved one so they can keep an eye on your journey every step of the way. We have also developed a ‘panic button’ that stays on your phone screen, so should you feel threatened you can press the button and notify both the local SafeKab office and a loved one that you need help. With our FREE SafeWalk function, you need never walk alone ever again!

SafeWalk is completely free to use for anyone who downloads the app! It’s a fantastic tool for students, schools, families, lone women, and anyone who might feel vulnerable while travelling alone. Download the app now and be sure of a safe end to a safe night out.

Download SafeKab today and start planning your budget-friendly adventure in Inverness today!