If you’re planning on spending the winter in the Highlands, brush up on Inverness’ most famous citizens. If you’re looking for things to do in Inverness during your stay, follow the Highland history trail and uncover the people, places and legends that have made Inverness a stunning destination and unforgettable experience for the whole family.
John Fraser: A Rose By Any Other Name
John Fraser was a plant hunter born in Inverness in 1750. As strange as that may sound today, it was a real and sought-after profession in his day. After moving to London, his love for botany blossomed, and in 1780, he embarked on his first voyage to North America to collect rare and beautiful plant species. It wasn’t long until his reputation earned him the position of botanical collector by the Czar of Russia. Today he is remembered by the Scottish Plant Hunter’s Garden in Pitlochry – which is always worth a visit for anyone looking for things to do in Inverness.
Sir Murdoch Macdonald: On Track To Fame And Fortune
Civil engineer and politician, Sir Murdoch Macdonald, joined the Highland Railway as a young lad. From 1891-94, he worked as an engineer on the Black Isle Railway, before leaving to Egypt in 1898 to work on the Aswan Dam. His knowledge of Egypt served him well, and during the First World War, he advised on the defence of the Suez Canal.
In 1914 he was knighted, and after the war, his engineering company heightened the Aswan Dam and designed the Nessie Bridge. In 1922 he was elected as Liberal Member of Parliament, created a Freeman of Inverness in 1930, and became President of the Institution of Civil Engineers in 1932. A firm believer of the Loch Ness Monster, he successfully persuaded the Scottish Secretary of State to issue an order to protect it. If you’re looking for things to do in Inverness, take a turn around Inverness Town House where his bust is on display.
Karen Gillian: Just What The Doctor Ordered
Born in 1987 in Inverness, Karen Gillian shot to fame as the famous Dr Who’s assistant. Throughout her short, but successful career, she has worked as a model and appeared in a number of television roles before securing her place as the faithful sidekick to the world’s favourite Doctor. With her natural beauty and a bright career ahead of her, she’s well on her way to putting the beauty of Inverness on the map.
Macbeth: Fair Is Foul, And Foul Is Fair
Plots of treason, witches most foul and murder afoot were topics that fascinated King James VI of Scotland – almost to the point of obsession. It’s not surprising then that famous playwright, William Shakespeare, used this to his advantage. Like any playwright worth his salt, he put the final touches on The Tragedie of Macbeth with the King’s obsession in mind … by setting the scene for the murder of Duncan in Inverness Castle.
Nessie: Another Monster Celebrity
Without a doubt, the Loch Ness Monster is Inverness’ biggest celebrity. The famous beast was first spotted in 565 AD when a “water beast” attacked one of St Columba’s followers in the loch. And the fantastical Nessie has been alluding us ever since. But if you’re looking for things to do in Inverness, don’t let that put you off a Nessie exploration of your own. New sightings of the water beast are always being recorded, and Inverness’ biggest celebrity has been beckoning explorers near and far to Loch Ness’ impressive shores for centuries.