Best Traditional Pubs in Inverness

Inverness is renowned for its picturesque landscapes, rich history, and vibrant social scene. Among its many attractions, traditional pubs hold a particularly special place, offering a unique blend of old-world charm, local flavours, and warm hospitality. This guide will take you through some of the finest traditional pubs in Inverness, each with its own character and story. Whether you are a resident or a visitor, these pubs promise an authentic and memorable experience.

1. Gellions Bar: The Oldest Bar in Inverness

Address: 14 Bridge St, Inverness IV1 1HD

Gellions Bar proudly holds the title of the oldest bar in Inverness, a claim backed by its rich history and enduring appeal to both locals and residents. Stepping into Gellions feels like travelling back in time, where the warmth of wood panelling and the aroma of traditional ales create a uniquely inviting atmosphere. The bar boasts an impressive selection of whiskies and beers, making it a haven for enthusiasts of fine spirits.


  • Live Traditional Music: Enjoy live performances seven nights a week, featuring accordions, penny whistles, bodhrans, and fiddles.
  • Warm Invernessian Welcome: Experience genuine hospitality that makes every visit special.

2. Glenalbyn Bar: Authentic Highland Experience

Address: 2 Young Street, Inverness IV3 5BL

The Glenalbyn Bar, with its origins as a coach house, offers an authentic Highland pub experience. Located right on the waterfront with views of Inverness Castle, it provides a scenic setting perfect for meeting friends before exploring the city centre. This pub is a local favourite, known for its unpretentious atmosphere and friendly service.


  • Waterfront Location: Enjoy picturesque views while sipping your favourite drink.
  • Local Ambiance: Immerse yourself in the true spirit of Highland hospitality.

3. The Castle Tavern: A Resting Spot for Adventurers

Address: 1 View Pl, Inverness IV2 4SA

Situated opposite Inverness Castle, The Castle Tavern is the ideal spot for those who have just completed the Great Glen Way. This traditional pub offers a cosy environment to rest and celebrate your achievements. With its prime location and welcoming vibe, it’s a must-visit for weary travellers and locals alike.


  • Scenic Views: Overlook Inverness Castle while enjoying your drink.
  • Relaxing Atmosphere: Perfect for unwinding after a long hike or a day of sightseeing.

4. The Waterfront: Drink with a View

Address: 70 Huntly St, Inverness IV3 5JN

As its name suggests, The Waterfront offers stunning river views, enhancing the pub experience with its serene backdrop. Beyond its visual appeal, the pub is known for its excellent selection of drinks and a hidden gem of a kitchen that serves up delightful food.


  • River Views: Enjoy a tranquil setting by the river.
  • Quality Cuisine: Savor delicious meals crafted from local ingredients.

5. Innes Bar: A Quiz Lover’s Paradise

Address: 61 Innes Street, Inverness IV1 1NR

Innes Bar is a friendly local pub that has cultivated a loyal following. Known for its inviting atmosphere and welcoming staff, it also hosts one of the best pub quizzes in the city, making it a popular spot for quiz enthusiasts.


  • Pub Quizzes: Join the fun every Sunday night.
  • Friendly Environment: Meet locals and enjoy the camaraderie.

6. The Phoenix Ale House: A Modern Take on Tradition

Address: 110 Academy St, Inverness IV1 1LX

The Phoenix Ale House combines the charm of a traditional pub with a modern twist. Recognised by CAMRA (the Campaign for Real Ale), this pub is dedicated to serving quality real ale. It also features a restaurant and lounge area, making it a versatile spot for both drinks and dining.


  • Real Ale Focus: Enjoy some of the best real ale in Inverness.
  • Modern Amenities: Relax in the comfortable lounge and restaurant area.

7. The Fluke: Community and Tradition

Address: Culcabock Road, Inverness IV2 3XQ

The Fluke is a beloved local pub that epitomizes the essence of a traditional Highland watering hole. Known for its friendly staff and even friendlier locals, it hosts numerous community events, reinforcing its status as a cornerstone of Inverness’s social life.


  • Community Events: Participate in a variety of events that foster community spirit.
  • Welcoming Atmosphere: Make lifelong friends in a pub that feels like home.

8. Macgregor’s Bar: Music and Great Food

Address: Academy Street, Inverness

When you walk into MacGregor’s you walk into modern-day Scotland with traditional Scottish elements.

It’s an adventure in taste, music and culture, highlighting the best that Scotland and Inverness have to offer. With its unique menu and extensive drinks list, you’ll get a right good taste of Scotland even on the shortest visit. With regular music nights from local musicians, it’s the perfect place to immerse yourself in the traditional whilst experiencing modern Scottish attitudes.


  • Live Traditional Music: Lively music to eat and drink to.
  • Welcoming Inverness Atmosphere: A perfect place to experience the real Inverness.

Book Your Inverness Taxi Now

If you’re venturing out for a few drinks in Inverness, don’t forget to prebook or order your Inverness Taxi through our convenient platforms:

Call Inverness Taxis on 01463222222

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