We call Nairn Scotland’s Highland Playground because Nairn’s big open spaces provide a variety of environments where you can happily and safely enjoy family adventures and peaceful relaxation – beaches, promenades, rockpools, parks, playparks, riversides, forest and two championship golf courses.
If you prefer to play indoors, you’ll find a good choice of bars and restaurants in Nairn offering the warm welcome you’d expect from Highland hospitality, as well as live music, theatre and events at the Nairn Community & Arts Centre and The Little Theatre.
If the beach is your thing, you’ll be spoiled for choice in Nairn. There are three gorgeous beaches to choose from, each with their own unique character. It’s no surprise that spending time on the beach is one of the most popular things to do in Nairn.
With two Championship golf courses located at either end of the town, you would think Nairn was all about golf. For some, that’s true, though Nairn has many more sporting activities to offer. Let’s talk about golf first.
Nairn provides lots of fishing opportunities for the serious angler and a fun family day out. The River Nairn, River Findhorn and even nearby Loch Ness provide great trout and salmon fishing. You can even fish for flounders from the harbour and Central Beach. If you have come without fishing tackle, Pat Fraser’s on the High Street has a good range.
Lovers of watersports will be delighted to find conditions in the Moray Firth ideal for a wide range of on-water activities. Kite Surfers and paddle boarders can often be seen off Central Beach and the harbour is home to sailing, kayak, coastal rowing and dinghy clubs. You can also take to the water on a leisurely dolphin watching Boat Trip from Nairn harbour with Phoenix Sea Adventures.
If walking along a sandy beach is your idea of paradise, Nairn has lots to offer. From a leisurely promenade stroll, to running on East Beach’s dunes or the deserted sands of the Secret Beach, it’s all waiting for you.
Planted in the 1920s to prevent the dunes from moving, Culbin Forest is a playground for cyclists and walkers, an RSPB nature reserve and a Site of Specific Scientific Interest. The only waymarked trails are Hill 99, which leads to a treetop viewing tower, and the shorter 1-mile Gravel Pit Ponds Trail which is accessible directly from Nairn’s East Beach.
Follow the River Nairn from its mouth at the harbour and you’ll find a number of short and pleasant riverside walks, which are also ideal for a family cycle. Walk all the way out to Househill for a well deserved treat at the farmshop and cafe.
Fishertown: If history is your thing, take the Heritage Trail around Fishertown to discover Nairn’s past as a herring boomtown and the locally founded Fisherman’s Society, an early precursor to today’s Welfare State. Fishertown is also home to the Little Theatre and Nairn Arts Society.