Inverness
Castle & Palace Tours

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Our most recommended Inverness Castle & Palace Tours

From Inverness: Loch Ness Cruise and Urquhart Castle

1. From Inverness: Loch Ness Cruise and Urquhart Castle

Cruise on Loch Ness and visit Urquhart Castle on this coach and boat tour that transports you directly from Inverness city center to the legendary Loch Ness. You’ll learn everything there is to know about the stirring past of these famous shores as you relax on a guided coach tour. After departing from Inverness by coach, you will drive to Loch Ness. Once you arrive, hop on board a boat to cruise across the Loch’s world-famous waters. Keep an eye on the sonars for a blip that could be Nessie! There is a fully stocked bar on board and a selection of Scottish snacks. Coffee, tea and hot chocolate are also served, should you require a little warming up. Once you are back on shore, explore the historic ruins of the once mighty stronghold of Urquhart Castle. After you have seen the castle, relax on the coach as you make the return drive to Inverness city center.

From Inverness: Isle of Skye and Eilean Donan Castle Tour

2. From Inverness: Isle of Skye and Eilean Donan Castle Tour

Explore the Isle of Skye on a day trip from Inverness, and marvel at some of the most stunning scenery in Scotland. Discover Loch Ness, Eilean Donan Castle, Portree, Kilt Rock, Lealt Falls, the Old Man of Storr, and more. Depart Inverness and travel South, along the shoreline of Loch Ness to Invermoriston. Stop for a short break at Loch Ness which is 24 miles long, over 700ft deep, famous for its sightings of the Loch Ness monster. Continue to the picturesque Eilean Donan Castle, situated on its own island at the head of Loch Duic. Take time to explore one of Scotland’s most photographed castles and its atmospheric surroundings. Journey to the Isle of Skye, passing over the Skye Bridge and on to the small village of Portree for a lunchtime stop. Portree, although a small harbor village, is the capital of Skye, and is surrounded by rocky cliffs and rolling hills. Take in its beautiful surroundings while enjoying lunch with views of the boats. Begin touring the island with stops at Kilt Rock, Lealt Falls, the Old Man of Storr, and perhaps Strome Viewpoint.

From Inverness: Isle of Skye Scenery Tour with Fairy Pools

3. From Inverness: Isle of Skye Scenery Tour with Fairy Pools

Depart from a central meeting point in Inverness, where you will meet your guide and board the mini-bus. First, stop at Eilean Donan Castle and take plenty of photos as you admire the majestic beauty of this iconic sight in its wonderful coastal location. Upon arrival in Portree, make your way to the harbor viewpoint where you can see the pretty pastel-colored houses. Enjoy a short stop here, where you can also purchase a light lunch. Next, stop at a loch-side viewpoint, and discover the unique rock formation of the Old Man of Storr. See the 50-meter high pinnacle that juts out from the Trotternish Ridge and is recognizable from blockbuster films including Ronin 47, Snow White & The Huntsman, Prometheus, and The BFG. Continue to Kilt Rock, an exposed sea cliff that resembles the traditional Highland kilt. Be amazed by the imposing waterfall that cascades 60ft (180m) into the Sound of Raasay below. Visit the Quiraing landslip on the eastern face of Meall na Suiramach. On a clear day, see the Outer Hebrides and the Scottish mainland, framed by pinnacles, cliffs, and great buttresses. Enjoy some time for a short hike at this scenic location. Continue to the Fairy Pools, a series of crystal clear waterfalls and pools surrounded by the stunning backdrop of the Cuillin Mountain. Finally, stop for some photos of Urquhart Castle and Loch Ness. Admire the sight of the castle on a distinctive peninsula jutting out onto the mysterious Loch Ness, before heading back to Inverness.

From Inverness: Loch Ness and The Highlands Day Trip

4. From Inverness: Loch Ness and The Highlands Day Trip

Leave Inverness in the morning and follow the beautiful Caledonian Canal to its source at Loch Ness. The loch is home to the famous Loch Ness monster, affectionately known as Nessie. You'll spend most of the morning at Loch Ness, allowing plenty of time to look for Nessie. Choose to take a 5-star cruise across the loch to Urquhart Castle. If you’d rather see the loch from the shore, then stay on board the bus and your driver will take you to Urquhart Castle. Explore the ruins of the castle, enjoy the visitor center, and soak up the atmosphere of Scotland’s most famous Loch. Your tour continues to Invermoriston, where you'll pause to take photos of the bridge and Columbus Well. Afterwards, journey to Fort Augustus, the furthermost point of your full-day Highlands tour. Fort Augustus is a small town of only 650 people and a perfect spot to watch boats passing through the Caledonian Canal while you enjoy your lunch. After lunch you'll begin the journey back to Inverness, stopping at the Falls of Foyers. The waterfall was a favorite retreat for poet Rabbie Burns, and is truly breathtaking. Enjoy plenty of time here to appreciate the landscape before continuing on to Dores to see Dores Beach. Spend a short while wandering the sandy shoreline before boarding the bus for the final time and returning to Inverness.

From Inverness: Complete Loch Ness 1-Day Experience

5. From Inverness: Complete Loch Ness 1-Day Experience

Depart Inverness and journey to the deep freshwater lake of Loch Ness in the Scottish Highlands, where, on arrival, you will head to the Clansman Hotel for an optional boat trip across the water. Cruise around the loch for stunning views of the surrounding scenery, and get the chance to see Urquhart Castle from a different perspective. Look for the legendary Loch Ness Monster to work up an appetite, and then enjoy a delicious lunch at a nearby restaurant. Venture on with a gentle drive to Invermoriston, where you can go on a scenic stroll that showcases flowing rivers, an ancient summerhouse and the ruins of a picturesque stone bridge. Continue to the wee village of Fort Augustus, nestled between Loch Ness and the 60-mile Caledonian Canal. Journet back towards Inverness, stopping for short walks and coffee breaks at the scenic villages of Foyers and Dores before your estimated arrival in Inverness at 5:00 PM.

From Inverness: Skye & Eilean Donan Castle Small-Group Tour

6. From Inverness: Skye & Eilean Donan Castle Small-Group Tour

Travel in style in a Mercedes minicoach and hear about Scotland's turbulent past from your knowledgeable guide. Marvel at the views of the mountains of Wester Ross on the drive to Eilean Donan Castle. Visit the castle before traveling over the bridge to Skye. Head through the mountainous heart of the island before arriving in the harbor town of Portree for lunch. After lunch the drive takes you around the Trotternish Peninsula. The guide will point out landmarks, including the Old Man of Storr, Kilt Rock and Quiraing. Make your way back through majestic Glen Shiel, along the shores of Loch Clunie. The final part of the trip takes you along the banks of mighty Loch Ness.

From Edinburgh: 3-Day Isle of Skye and The Highlands Tour

7. From Edinburgh: 3-Day Isle of Skye and The Highlands Tour

Embark on a 3-day guided tour of the Scottish Highlands and visit highlights, including Loch Ness and the Isle of Skye. Learn the history of this lush region from your guide and spend two nights in Inverness. Day 1: Departing Edinburgh, we will take our first short drive heading north and stop at the mysterious Kelpies. Scotland’s largest piece of outdoor art depicting mythical creatures of Scotland’s folklore that your driver will tell you all about. We’ll then continue on our journey and pass Stirling Castle. Be inspired by tales from your guide of William Wallace and Robert the Bruce. Continuing north, into the Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park, admire the scenery as your tour guide explains the remarkable tribal clan history of the Highlands. Discover beautiful Glencoe, the most famous valley in Scotland, and hear of its tragic history. Admire the spectacular Glenfinnan Viaduct then head north and arrive on the southern banks of Loch Ness to get photos of the infamous monster Nessie! Stop for photos of Urquhart Castle before arriving in Inverness, the Capital of the Highlands, where you'll stay for 2 nights, choosing from a local guesthouse, hostel, or hotel. Day 2: After breakfast, depart Inverness and drive across the Kessock Bridge to the Black Isle and marvel at the spectacular scenery of Achnasheen and Loch Carron. Arriving on the Isle of Skye, venture north to explore the highlights of the island, including; the Cuillin Mountains, Trotternish Peninsula, Portree, the Old Man Storr, Kilt Rock and the famous Quiraing. In late afternoon, stop for photographs of the most beautiful castle in Scotland, "Eilean Donan Castle." Backdrop to many famous films, such as 'Highlander' and 'Made of Honor', this castle is another must-see iconic landmark! A scenic drive through stunning Glen Shiel follows, returning to Inverness to stay your final night. In the evening, visit a local Highland Pub to drink some Scotch whisky or beer and eat some traditional Scottish food, whilst listening to some local musicians perform. Day 3: Visit Culloden Battlefield, site of the last Jacobite Rising, then 'Clava Cairns', incredible 4,000-year-old, Bronze-Age standing stones. Travelling south, stop at the Highland Folk Museum. Here you'll experience highland life in the 17th century. See the buildings, the clothes and weapons, and how people lived 300 years ago. Then, drive through the dramatic Cairngorm National Park. You will have the chance to experience Dalwhinnie Scotch Whiskey-Distillery for an optional tasting tour before you visit the historic Dunkfeld Cathedral on the banks of the mighty River Tay. Your journey back to Edinburgh takes you across the famous Forth Bridges. The expected arrival time back in Edinburgh is around 6:30 PM.

From Inverness: Isle of Skye Full-Day Trip

8. From Inverness: Isle of Skye Full-Day Trip

Depart Inverness and travel via Loch Ness to the Isle of Skye. Loch Ness is the largest Loch by volume in the British Isles, and one of the deepest ones too. Famous worldwide for its elusive monster, it hosts one of the most iconic castles of Scotland: Urquhart Castle. Visit the Fairy Pools. Walk the trail that takes to you to the pools and enjoy a swim with the fairies. After visiting the Fairy Pools, stop at Talisker Single Malt Scotch Distillery based in Carbost. You'll go through the Visitor Centre (not on the tour) and, if available, sample one of the fine whiskeys produced here. Continue your journey of the Isle of Skye, and take in the small village of Portree for an afternoon break. Portree is a small harbour village, and the capital of Skye. Before you travel back to Inverness, you will enjoy sights of the mighty Eilean Donan Castle, which is situated on its own island, and is one of Scotland’s most photographed castles. Continue homeward bound to Inverness, where your tour ends.

From Inverness: 2-Day Isle of Skye and The Fairy Pools Tour

9. From Inverness: 2-Day Isle of Skye and The Fairy Pools Tour

Begin your 2-day tour at the meeting point in Inverness. From there, drive with your guide to your first stop at Loch Ness, the largest loch in the British Isles, and one of the deepest too. Keep an eye out for the world-famous yet elusive monster, and discover one of the most iconic castles in Scotland: Urguhart Castle. Next, continue via the soaring mountains, sparkling rivers, and wild moorlands of Glien Shiel and the Five Sisters of Kintal to the Isle of Skye. Enjoy the view of the rocky Cuillin Mountains when you arrive on Skye before heading to the Fairy Pools, one of the most dramatic landscapes on the island. The fairies regularly bathe here, in the crystal clear green pools of the River Brittle. Weather permitting, swim in the pools of the river, one of the UK’s best wild swimming spots. Have fun diving under natural arches and waterfalls, but please do not spy on the fairies, as they can easily take offense. After enjoying the company of the fairies, move on to Neist Point, the best place on the island to spot whales, dolphins, and sharks. Here, get transported to the edge of the world, with its beautiful scenery, awesome skies, and endless ocean. Your driver-guide will then drop you off at your accommodation (not included in the tour price) for the night. On the second day, get picked up from your accommodation by your driver-guide and make your way to Fairy Glen. Wander between countless conical mounds, known in the Highlands as fairy knowes; put your ears to the grass and listen for the fairies at work inside. Bend down to search for elves in the glen's miniature forests, take the twisted path to the top of the fairy castle, or walk the faun’s maze and have a wish granted! Then, head off the beaten track to Rha waterfalls, also known as the hidden waterfalls, and do some more wild swimming. Next up is the Quiraing, a landscape used in many sci-fi films known for its otherworldly rock formations and stunning vistas. From there, move on to the breathtaking Kilt Rock, home to the dinosaurs of Skye’s ancient past. Admire its distinctive pillars and beautiful waterfall with views across to the Torridon Hills on the mainland. After leaving Kilt Rock, view the Old Man of Storr, a 61-meter (200-foot) stone pillar that has detached itself from the highest point of the 720-meter (2,362-foot) ride. Marvel at a fantastical landscape of twisted rocks, looming shadows, and swirling mists, and take in a stunning clifftop view out to the islands of Rhona, Raasay, and the mountains of Assynt. Make your last stop on your 2-day tour at Eilean Donan Castle, the stronghold of the Clan MacRae and the headquarters of James Bond in “The World is not Enough,” on your way back to Inverness. The tour concludes at the original meeting point.

From Edinburgh: Outlander Experience 2-Day Tour

10. From Edinburgh: Outlander Experience 2-Day Tour

Day 1 Your first visit will be Blackness Castle overlooking the Firth of Forth. The castle was used as the backdrop for Fort William and then Wentworth Prison (or as it in known, Linlithgow Palace). Onwards to Doune Castle, better known as Castle Leoch, home to Colum Mackenzie. The castle has also made appearances in the Monty Python and the Holy Grail film. Stop for lunch and a taste of whisky at the charming little distillery of Deanston. Next, into the Highlands and through Glen Coe with a quick stop at Loch Ness before arriving at your overnight in Inverness. Day 2 Step back in time 4000 years ago at Clava Cairns, the inspiration for Craigh na Dun. Then, continue to Culloden Battlefield, the scene of the last battle fought on British soil. Discover a living history at the Highland Folk Museum and its various time period scenes. Relive one of the first scenes when Jamie's ghost looks up in Claire's room at Outlander's Inverness: Falkland Village. Finally, explore the outside of Lallybroch at Midhope Castle. There will be a quick photo stop before arriving back in Edinburgh.

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What people are saying about Inverness

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 1,171 reviews

The two business owners, Kay and Gordon, are an absolutely lovely pair. They were so kind and warm to accommodate me despite *me* being at fault having made a mistake in my booking, and did their best to be flexible with me. Our tour guide was wonderful - he was entertaining, informative, and fun… and finally, the tour itself is beautiful and full considering the short aunt of time. If you’re trying to get a great snapshot of Skye in a short period, and support a wonderful family owned company, don’t hesitate to book with this company ❤️ Thank you again to the truly great team! I look forward to reaching out next time I’m in town. Best xx Nicole Khal

Small bus was great and driver was very skilled and knowledgeable about places and history. The accommodation was very comfortable and the small touches with eating guides and additional toiletries and snacks was a great bonus. Due to current staff shortages in hospitality it was a struggle getting a place to eat for evening meals. Especially in small towns such as Ullapool and Stornoway. Perhaps coach driver could have had some dining options with advance reservations to support this.

It was great! Shelby had the greatest stories and made everything fun. We had awful weather but all the places were beautiful anyways. I completely recommend to take this tour :)

An amazing tour. Enjoyed every minute and our tour guide Luke made it memorable. Knowledgeable, great fun and went out of his way to make it so. Thank you!

Duncan was amazing and his knowledge and charisma is unmatched. Best tour ever