Inverness Highland Games and Gathering

Inverness Highland Games Armed Forces Parade

Inverness Highland Games Armed Forces Parade

The Inverness Highland Games are held annually, in July, as part of the Inverness Summer Festival. This traditional Gathering is held at the Northern Meeting Park, behind Inverness Cathedral and just over the river from Inverness Castle. Held within the heart of Inverness, this is the world’s oldest highland games, offering plenty to interest visitors and competitors.

Events and tickets

Events within the Gathering include a toddler’s race, a traders’ village, exhibitions, piping, highland dancing, athletics, wheelchair curling, mass highland fling and backhold wrestling. The Heavy events, including Scots hammer, weight challenges and tossing the caber make for a fine show with both male and female competitors.

Part of the competition is the lifting of the Inverness stone, and also the historic Stonemason’s stone. Right from the inception of these Games, the Stonemason’s Stone Challenge has been in place – the lifting of a 252lb boulder over a five foot high bar.

Since 1822, these Games have been a major highlight for any visitor to the Inverness area, providing a mixture of record breaking performances from competitors and the spectacles of social, sporting and musical events.

In 2013, a large clan village was created by the Association of Highland Clans and Societies, and is likely to be integrated into the general programme in the future.

Tickets for the Games are not available in advance – they can only be bought on the day.

Where to stay in Inverness

Whether you’re coming to Inverness to compete in the Games, or to attend them as a Spectator, we can offer accommodation to meet the needs of individuals, couples, families and groups. From self-catering cottages to hotels, there’s something to appeal to all budgets and requirements. Accommodation does book up quickly around the time of the Games, so book early to avoid disappointment.

Michelle is an experienced travel writer with iknow and has travelled extensively across the UK, Spain, Portugal and the USA. When she’s not busy writing for iknow she enjoys spending time touring museums and art galleries and seeking out the best independent shops in Manchester and Leeds.