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Inveraray is in the Argyll and Bute region of Highland Scotland, on the north shore of Loch Fyne. It's dominated by its castle, built by the 3rd Duke of Argyll - but the 5th Duke went further and rebuilt the entire town 1772-1800. The result is a remarkable early "planned town", with unity of architectural style, and its parish church perched on a traffic island. In 2021 the population was 580.

Get in

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"There's naething here but Highland pride, and Highland scab and hunger,
"If Providence has sent me here, 'Twas surely in his anger."
- Robert Burns scrawled his opinion of Inveraray on a pub window in 1787.

The town is on the busy A83, leading from Loch Lomond west to the Argyll peninsula. Citylink buses run six times a day from Glasgow Buchanan Station via Tarbet and Arrochar, taking 1 hr 45 min. Bus 926 continues southwest to Lochgilphead, Tarbert (Loch Fyne) for ferries to Islay, and Campbeltown; Bus 976 goes north to Taynuilt and Oban.

West Coast Motors Bus 428 runs twice on school days M-F from Lochgilphead to Inveraray via Crarae, Furnace and Auchindrain,

Get around

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The town can easily be explored on foot, but a car or bike is essential for sightseeing further out.

See

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  • 1 Inveraray Castle, Inveraray PA32 8XE, +44 1499 302203. Apr-Oct: Th-M 10AM-5PM. Stately mansion, home to the Dukes of Argyll, chiefs of Clan Campbell, built in Gothic Revival style from 1743. It has sumptuous interiors and extensive gardens, and is often used as a film and TV location. Adult £16, conc £14, child £12. Inveraray Castle (Q1671720) on Wikidata Inveraray Castle on Wikipedia
  • 2 Inveraray Jail, Church Square, Inveraray PA32 8TX, +44 1499 302381. Daily 10AM-5PM. Jail in use from 1820 to 1889, when prisoners transferred to Barlinnie in Glasgow, not necessarily an improvement. It continued as a courthouse until 1962, then was refurbished as a museum recreating the miseries of a felon in that era. Adult £14.95, conc £12.95, child £8.95. Inveraray Jail (Q1513549) on Wikidata Inveraray Jail on Wikipedia
  • The Bell Tower in town centre belongs to All Saints Church. It's open July to mid-September M-F.
  • 3 Dun na Cuaich Watchtower is a folly of 1756, built simply to embellish the view from the castle. It's reached by a short trail up the hill.
  • 4 Dunderave Castle on the loch shore four miles east of town is an L-plan redoubt built around 1500. It was re-vamped in 1911 into a private residence, no tours.
  • 5 Auchindrain Historic Township, Furnace PA32 8XN (6 miles south of Inveraray), +44 1499 500235. Daily 10:30AM-4:30PM. It resembles a Skansen-type outdoor museum, but these buildings have not been assembled from elsewhere, this is a genuine preserved township circa 1800, on a 22 acre site. Adult £12, conc £9, child £6. Auchindrain (Q758612) on Wikidata Auchindrain on Wikipedia
  • 6 Crarae Garden, Minard PA32 8YA (10 miles south of Inveraray), +44 1546 886614. Daily Apr-Oct 10AM-5PM, Nov-Mar 10AM-4PM. Woodland garden with Himalayan plants and waterfalls, run by National Trust for Scotland. Adult £8.50, conc £6.50, child £1, NTS / NT free.

Do

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  • Golf: Inveraray GC has nine holes. It's on Upper Avenue, half a mile south of Loch Fyne Hotel.
  • Inveraray Highland Games are held at the castle in July, with the next on Tu 16 July 2024.
  • Shinty: Inveraray play in Mowi National Division, the second tier, with their home ground at the castle. The playing season is April-Oct.
  • 1 Argyll Adventure, Dalchenna Farm PA32 8XT (2 miles south of Inveraray on A83), +44 1499 302611. Apr-Oct: Tu-Su 10AM-5PM. Scenic treks, riding lessons, pony rides, and fast rides if you're competent to gallop over uneven ground. Plus various others (eg laser tag shooting), but it's really all about the horses here.

Buy

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Armoury of Inveraray Castle
  • Co-op Food is the convenience store, on The Avenue and open daily 7AM-10PM.

Eat

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  • Ocho on Quay Close serves brunch Th-M 11AM-4PM.
  • Samphire at 6 Arkland is a good seafood restaurant, open Tu-Sa noon-2:30PM and 5-8:45PM.
  • Cottage Restaurant on Main St is open Th-Tu 11AM-4PM, 5:30-8:30PM.
  • 1 Loch Fyne Oyster Bar, Cairndow PA26 8BL (10 miles northeast of Inveraray at head of loch), +44 1499 600482. Su-Th 9:30AM-5PM, F Sa 9:30AM-6PM. Renowned seafood restaurant, book ahead if you know you're coming. With shop and deli.

Drink

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  • George Hotel (see Sleep) has an atmospheric bar.
  • 1 Fyne Ales, Achadunan, Cairndow PA26 8BJ (Up lane off A83 at the head of Loch Fyne, 10 miles northeast of Inveraray), +44 1499 600120. Daily 10AM-6PM. Small brewery with tours on Saturday and Sunday. It brews a range of ales which are sold in bottles and on draught. Tour £10.

Sleep

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Inveraray Castle
  • 1 Argyll Caravan Park, Inveraray PA32 8XT (3 miles south of town), +44 1499 302285. Well-maintained site on main road, open Apr-Oct. Hook-up £30.
  • 2 Loch Fyne Hotel, Inveraray PA32 8XT (south end of village), +44 1499 302980, . Gets great reviews for comfort, ambience and service; dog-friendly. No lift to upper floors. With restaurant, leisure and spa facilities. B&B double £200.
  • Creag Dhubh, Newton, Inveraray PA32 8XT (next to Loch Fyne Hotel), +44 1499 302430. Smart guest house with extensive gardens. B&B double £190.
  • 3 Newton Hall, Foulis Rd, Inveraray PA32 8UH, +44 1499 302484. Pleasant guest house in a former church. B&B double £120.
  • George Hotel, 1 Main Street East, Inveraray PA32 8TT, +44 1499 302111. Charming old coaching inn with bar and restaurant. 17 rooms in the original building and 8 in the adjacent First House. B&B double from £115.
  • 4 Inveraray Inn, Front Street, Inveraray PA32 8XB, +44 1499 302466, . 36 ensuite rooms, many overlooking the loch. The building was designed by John Adam and opened in 1755; he forgot to install lifts, so you access upper floors by a spiral staircase. With Argyll Bar. B&B double £145.
  • Inveraray Hostel, Dalmally Road, Inveraray PA32 8XD (by main road junction), +44 1499 302562. Independent hostel open Apr-Oct, clean, friendly and well-run. In 2023 they only offer private rooms, no dorm. Double (room only) £60..

Connect

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Be careful over Airbnb bookings

As of June 2023, Inveraray has 4G from EE and O2, and a basic mobile signal from Three and Vodafone; the signal is very patchy along the approach roads. 5G has not reached this area.

Go next

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  • The main road A83 continues southwest along the loch shore to Lochgilphead, Tarbert (Loch Fyne) (for ferries to Islay), and down the Argyll peninsula to the Mull of Kintyre.
  • A819 winds over the hills north to Loch Awe, to join the roads for Oban, Glencoe and Fort William. Near Taynuilt see Kilchurn Castle and the "hollow mountain" of Ben Cruachan.
  • Cowal: most visitors don't even know it's there. It's a peninsula reached by A815 which branches off A83 at the head of the loch, by Cairndow.
  • A83 east climbs over the hills to Arrochar and Tarbet on Loch Lomond.
Routes through Inveraray
CampbeltownLochgilphead  SW  E  TarbetGlasgow



This city travel guide to Inveraray is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.