Top Must-see Attractions on Your Highland Adventure

Urquhart castle and loch ness, with cruise ship

Interested in re-living some of your favourite moments from the titular series Outlander without having to switch on the TV? Don’t worry, there’s no time travel required either to visit these Outlander locations near Inverness. Perfect for avid fans of the series and best-selling books, or even if you’re just looking for a summer’s day out well spent with some fantastic views and scenery, these locations in and around Inverness featured in the books and hit TV show will be ideal for you. 

Culloden Battlefield

In the emotional culmination of season 1, the battle of Culloden takes centre stage, as Claire and Jamie bid each other farewell before the bloody conflict ensues.

This location, situated just outside of Inverness’ residential area Culloden, is also a popular tourist destination due to said battle, where the Jacobites under Charles Edward Stuart (Bonnie Prince Charlie,) were overwhelmed by the forces of the British leader William Augustus, AKA the Duke of Cumberland. Although in modern times the Battlefield is a slightly different sight with monuments having been erected to honour the clans who fought and fell in battle in defence of Inverness, the murky moors and spanning landscape remains the same as the TV series. 

Castle Leod

Situated roughly 20 miles outside of Inverness, near the village of Strathpeffer, Castle Leod is the inspiration for the fictional location of a similar name, Castle Leoch.

In the show, this is the first location Jamie takes Claire after she is transported back in time by the mysterious stones in Craigh Na Dun. The castle has regular open days and guided tours throughout the year, the stunning grounds are a perfect destination for a summers day outing if you are in Inverness.

Clava Cairns

Clava Cairns is a prehistoric burial site near Culloden Battlefield dating back to the Bronze Age. Around each burial mound or “cairn” are arranged a number of standing stones, reminiscent of the fictional Craigh Na Dun where Claire is transported back in time.

Although these stones are not thought to possess any magical powers, they are known to be aligned with the midwinter sunset, a sign that the ancient people of Scotland revered this time of the year as a period of death and rebirth. At Clava Cairns you’ll also find a cleft stone, familiar to any Outlander fan who may recognise it from the cover of author Diana Gabaldon’s “Outlandish Companion” and as the inspiration for the story’s famous magical stones.

Tulloch Ghru

Used as a stand-in location for Culloden Moor, shots in the show’s opening credits as well as when Claire makes her way to Castle Leoch with Jamie on horseback, Tulloch Ghru is located in Cairngorm National Park.

This location is about a half an hour drive away from Inverness itself, although it is well worth the time coming out of Inverness to visit. The area is home to wildlife, an extensive array of natural Scottish foliage and flowers as well as stunning views and vistas. Perfect for mountain biking, hill walking and home to some of Scotland’s best ski runs in the wintertime, Tulloch Ghru is ideal for fans of the show and casual outdoorsmen alike.

The Highland Folk Museum

Filmed at the Highland Folk Museum are the Mackenzie Village scenes where Dougal and his party are seen collecting rent, as well as where Claire can be seen “waulking” with the other female villagers. This location is unique to the others in that it is actually an open-air museum, with live animals, villagers in costume, helping to produce the most authentic experience of any of the locations on the list.

Isle of Skye

The furthest away destination from Inverness, the Isle of Skye is where Bonny Prince Charlie escaped after losing the Battle of Culloden and is the focal point of the song used for the opening credits of the show.

The lyrics to the opening credits actually reading “sing me a song of a lass that is gone, say could that lass be I? Merry of soul, she sailed on a day over the sea of Skye”

Although only shots from Skye being used in the opening credits and no actual scenes from the show being filmed there, it is still a location associated closely with the lore of Outlander and holds a special place in many fans hearts, making it the perfect day trip for any Outlander fanatic.

Faskally Woods

Featuring prominently in season 4, the forest being used for filming the Mohawk Village scenes, Faskally Woods sits on the outskirts of Cairngorm National Park a short drive from the capital of the Highlands.

Although the village itself was a set built there for the filming of the TV series and is no longer there, the location itself is worth the trip, the woods used for the Native American village are a fantastic hiking destination for anyone looking to see some of the sights from Outlander. It’s worth noting the location was also used in the part where Claire and Jamie begin building their new home in North Carolina.

Urquhart Castle

On the banks of Loch Ness, Urquhart Castle was used when Claire and Frank Randall go for a day trip together to the castle in the original Outlander book.

The stunning views of the Great Glen and Loch Ness are reason enough to make the 12 mile trip to the castle from Inverness. On top of this, the ruins of the castle itself are full of history, the castle having been fought and claimed by English and Scots time and time again throughout history. It also features rich architectural detail making it worth more than the small entry fee it would cost to enjoy one of Scotland’s oldest castles.

Wardlaw Mausoleum

Near Kirkhill, a small village outside of Inverness, Wardlaw Mausoleum is a draw to fans of the Outlander series as it is rumored to be the final resting place of the real Lord Lovat, the grandfather of main character Jamie in the show. The real “Old Fox” of the Jacobite rebellion was said to be laid to rest in the basement of the mausoleum and is still thought to be there to this day. For its strong connection to the history the show is based on, this location near Inverness holds a very strong connection with Outlander fans.

Ideal for any would-be adventurer, this list is perfect for a round tour of the Highlands over the summer months. If you decide you want to see these locations for yourself why not book a stay with us at Loch ness Glamping in one of our luxury glamping pods, ideal for a couples weekend away or even a staycation if you are a Highland native. For more information on how to book with us look no further than our website.