Activities in Nairn – Great value into the autumn

If you’re visiting Nairn in the next few months, you might like to know who is staying open and who is closing – and also, with the cost of living crisis being high in people’s minds, you might like to plan some low cost activities to keep you busy, keep the kids entertained and get you good value for your money. As we head towards Autumn a few of our well-loved venues such as James’s on the Putting Green and The Strathnairn Beach Cafe will be closing around the end of October, but there is still plenty to see and do in Nairn after the summer rush has passed.


  • Walks – There are many beautiful walks in and around Nairn. Beach, woodland,  and riverside. Some of the many trails on offer, to suit young and old and all abilities, can be found here or here.
  • Beaches – East, West and Central beaches are all a short distance from the town. Beachcombers can find a trove of wonders in the rock pools at low tide. The Secret beach is also a lovely walk, but please be mindful and respectful and leave nothing but footprints after your visit.
  • Arts & Culture – Nairn Community and Arts Centre on King Street is not only a fine example of sustainable modern architecture but the heart of the community with regular free art exhibitions on all year round. Check their what’s on calendar for regular gigs and events to suit all ages and tastes. 
  • Forests/WoodlandCulbin, Delnies, Darnaway, Cawdor, Carse and Ferness are all great woodlands not far from Nairn.
  • Rait Castle is a local ruin which can be visited. Solid footwear is advised as the ground is quite uneven to reach the site.

Low Cost:

  • Castles & Historical sites – There are several historical sites and castle around Nairn which can be visited for a relatively low cost. If you are a member of the National Trust for Scotland, you can get free entry. Local sites include Brodie Castle, Abertarff House, and Culloden Battlefield. If you are a Historic Environment Scotland Member you can get into their local sites for free including Fort George, Clava Cairns (which is free to everyone) and Dallas Dhu Historic Distillery.
  • Cawdor Castle is another local castle with beautiful gardens worth visiting.
  • Logie Steading is a local visitor centre located in the beautiful Findhorn Valley boasting a lovely selection of shops, café and during the late summer months – outdoor theatre productions. There are also beautiful long horn cattle in the surrounding fields and a small garden centre.
  • Nairn Museum is a wonderful place to visit for all ages. Learn about local history and view the exhibits. The museum closes for the winter at the end of October. 
  • Nairn Bowling Club offer taster sessions on Saturdays throughout the season at 1.45pm. Please wear flat shoes and have some fun.

Visiting Nairn doesn’t have to be expensive, as you can see there are many free and low-cost activities for all ages and abilities. Combine that with a plethora of High Street shops and many wonderful eateries, you have the perfect combination for any type of holiday. The summer may be ending but Nairn is still a hive of activity.

Autumn/Winter Events:

The Nairn Book and Arts Festival runs from 27th Aug to 4th Sept 2022. The festival features many events over the week ranging from talks, performances, tours, and a parade. Prices vary from event to event, please see the festival website for costs and booking.

Slightly further afield is the Findhorn Bay Festival, running from the 23rd of Sept to 2nd Oct 2022. It also features a range of events with varying costs. 

Wheels of Nairn is the major highlight of September,  on Saturday 24th from 10 til 3 on Nairn Links. A classic and Modern Car Show against the stunning backdrop of the Moray Firth. With over 200 vehicles ranging from pre/post war bikes and cars to modern vehicles. There will also be stalls and refreshments. Entry to the public is free.

Towards Christmas why not check out what is going on at The Little Theatre or the Nairn Community and Arts Centre? And save the date for Nairn’s annual Christmas Extravaganza and street market, which will be taking place on 26th November 2022, launching the Christmas season in style. 

Further Afield:

If you are looking for low-cost days out further afield from Nairn, here are some suggestions:

  • Ballindalloch Castle is a beautiful castle with stunning grounds located between Grantown on Spey and Aberlour, in the heart of Malt Whisky Trail and the North East 250.
  • Glen Moray Distillery offers tours for £7pp and is a fascinating place to visit. Whisky flights are also available.
  • Macduff Aquarium is an educational day out for kids and adults alike. With daily feedings and talks, you will learn all there is to know about the Moray Firth and its inhabitants.
  • No visit to Scotland is complete without a visit to see Nessie. The Loch Ness Center and Exhibition and Nessieland both have informative exhibits with information about the loch and the monster herself along with shops and cafes.