Things To Do - East of Inverness
Along the Moray Coast, there's a huge variety of attractions near to Days 1, 3 and 4.
The Nairn Show will be taking place on Saturday 1 August – see this news item for more information about events in Nairn that day. The show includes livestock exhibitions, craft fair, food fair, cookery demonstrations, pipe band, sheepdog and duck display team, show jumping, and vintage machinery display.
Here are some ideas for interesting places to go and things to do, east of Inverness. Please check details on websites before visiting attractions.
Museums / Galleries
- Nairn Museum – Has a wide range of permanent displays featuring various aspects of Nairn's history, and welcomes children, with a range of pick-up-and-touch exhibits and a safe play area.
- Highland Aviation Museum – Located close to Inverness Airport, this volunteer-run museum has a wide range of exhibits, indoors and outdoors, including various aircraft with access to their cockpits.
- Falconer Museum, Forres – Council-run museum featuring Moray heritage. Permanent displays include social history, geology, natural history and archaeology. Opening hours, extended especially for WOC and Scottish 6 Days: Opening late til 8pm for sprint qualifiers on Fri 31 July, Tue - Sat 10am-5pm, Sun 1pm - 5 pm, closed Monday.
- Findhorn Heritage Centre and Icehouse – The Centre tells the story of Findhorn from prehistoric times to the present day, and the 150-year-old Icehouse (originally for storing ice to keep salmon cool) is now used for displays about the local salmon fishing industry.
- Moray Motor Museum, Elgin – Collection of veteran, vintage and classic cars (including race winners) and motorbikes, plus model cars and related items.
- Elgin Museum – Scotland’s oldest independent museum, with objects displayed from all around the world, but especially from Moray, including archaeology, fossils and Elgin social history.
- Nairn beach – Superb sandy beach with beautiful views across the Moray Firth to the Black Isle, and a great range of coastal walks in either direction.
- North 58° Sea Adventures, Findhorn – Wildlife expeditions or scenic tours.
- Scottish Dolphin Centre, Fochabers – Land‐based dolphin watching at Spey Bay, tours/nature walks, exhibition, café, gift shop, kids’ activities. Free admission.
- Culloden Battlefield – The course of history was changed here on 16 April 1746, when the Jacobite army fought to reclaim the throne of Britain from the Hanoverians for a Stuart king.
- Clava Cairns – Three Bronze Age burial cairns, one of Scotland’s most evocative sacred prehistoric sites.
- Fort George – Created by George II in the 18th Century as the ultimate defence against Jacobite unrest. Still in use, Fort George is the mightiest artillery fortification in Britain.
- Cawdor Castle – Dates from the late 14th Century, built as a private fortress by the Thanes of Cawdor. A superb fairy‐tale Castle with a sumptuous interior; also has extensive grounds and gardens.
- Brodie Castle – 16th Century castle, sensitively restored to show what everyday life was like for one of Scotland’s most ancient clans. Set in peaceful parkland with landscaped gardens, pond, woodland walk and adventure playground.
- Sueno’s Stone, Forres – Carved Pictish stone, described as “the most remarkable sculptured monument in Britain”.
- Burghead Fort – A site of significant power in the heyday of the northern Picts. Visitor Centre, rock-cut well, great views, dolphin-watching.
- Elgin Cathedral – Magnificent ruin, much of which dates back to the 13th century, and is home to Scotland’s finest octagonal chapter house.
- Duffus Castle – One of the finest examples of a motte and bailey castle in Scotland (now ruined, but still impressive).
- Spynie Palace – The fortified seat of the Bishops of Moray for about 500 years until 1686. The founding of the palace dates back to the late 12th Century.
- Auchindoun Castle (near Dufftown) – Built about 1480 by Thomas Cochrane, Earl of Mar.
- Ardclach Bell Tower – A little fortified bell tower, built in 1655. Very close to Day 1.
- Nelson's Tower, Forres – Monument on Cluny Hill, looking out over the town. The tower is open every day in the summer from 14:00-16:00 , with panoramic views from the top.
Sports / Adventure activities
- Nairn Leisure Centre – Located near the beach, the facilities here include a new fitness suite, swimming pool, steam room, outdoor gym, 18 hole golf putting area and paddling pool.
- Moray Leisure Centre, Elgin – Sports and leisure centre with an ice rink, swimming pool, squash court, fitness suite, relaxation suite (spa pool, sauna, steam room), beauty therapy and café.
- Outfit Moray, Lossiemouth – Wide range of outdoor activities including canoeing, coasteering, gorge swimming, mountain biking, rock climbing.
- Ace Adventure, Auchnagairn – Outdoor adventure activities on the River Findhorn, including white water rafting, cliff jumping, river tubing, canoeing, canyoning.
- Sport in Moray – One-stop shop to find out about other sporting activities in Moray. Check out their clubs and events listings to find any sport that interests you.
- Speyside Climbing Centre, Aberlour – Indoor climbing wall, recently opened at Speyside Sports and Community Centre and attracting great reviews.
- Spireroxx Centre, Elgin - Brand new indoor climbing wall.
- Pinz, Elgin – Ten-pin bowling centre with soft play area, restaurant and bar.
- Nairn Dunbar Golf Club – Championship golf course with panoramic views over the Moray Firth. Orienteers are welcome to use the clubhouse facilities, including bar and restaurant. Leaflets available from Information offer 20% discount off a round of golf for all 6-Day competitors (and family), up to the end of 2015.
- Forres Golf Club - are delighted to offer a special discount to participants in the World Orienteering Championship & Scottish 6 Days. Our normal green of £39.00 will reduce to £19.50, to book a tee time, just phone 01309 672250 with your name and bib number to receive this special offer. The offer is available from Friday 31st July to Friday 14th August.
- Nairn Sports Club - has 4 tennis courts, 2 squash courts, badminton , gym and a variety of fitness classes . Open 0530 - 2300, 7 days a week to members and non-members. Those that are taking part in orienteering or visiting are welcome to use any of the facilities.
- The Loft, Kinloss – Multi‐activity centre and family-friendly café on a working farm.
- Logie Steading, near Forres – Shopping village and visitor centre with a wide variety of attractions including an art gallery, bookshop, antiques, heritage centre, gardens, café and lovely walks along the River Findhorn to Randolph's Leap.
- Benromach Distillery, Forres – Family-run distillery offering distillery tour, visitor centre, tastings.
- Dallas Dhu Historic Distillery, Forres – Whisky industry museum and visitor centre. Built in 1898, no longer working. See and hear how whisky was made – and sample a free dram.
- Glen Moray Distillery, Elgin – Small, friendly and informal distillery run by avid supporters of the Moray running scene. Vistor centre, tours, tastings.
- The Malt Whisky Trail – Signposted route including 8 distilleries and the Speyside Cooperage (where whisky casks are made).