Inverness from the castle

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mackintosh room pension

 

 

 

 

 

Inverness, the capital of the Scottish Highlands, is a thriving tourist town.  With iconic places of interest nearby, like Loch Ness and Culloden Battlefield, Inverness is a must-visit destination.  If you’re taking a trip to Scotland, Bannerman Bed and Breakfast is perfect accommodation in Inverness.

Comfortable Ensuite Bedrooms

With 4 comfortable, ensuite rooms, guests often say they feel very much at home here.  Each room is quite self-contained with a TV, clock/radio/ipod dock, hairdrier, tea/coffee and free wifi.  There’s also home comforts like big fluffy towels and nice toiletries.  Double and twin rooms also have a silent fridge, perfect for keeping drinks cold.  You are given a front door key as well as a room key so you can come and go whenever you please.  The days are gone when b&bs issued a curfew and you had to be in by a certain time – not ideal when you’re on holiday having fun, enjoying the nightlife of Inverness.  The location is convenient too – a few minutes walk from the riverside and Eden Court Theatre with the Bught Park and Ness Islands nearby.  We’re about a 15 minute walk from the town centre.

Choosing overnight accommodation in Inverness

There’s a huge choice of places to stay in Inverness, from youth hostels to 5 star hotels.  We’ve had a lot of coverage in the local papers highlighting extremely expensive hotels in Inverness over the summer season.  Some have compared extortionate rates with those of London hotels and certainly some are very expensive at peak times.

There’s also the Airbnb option which suits many.  We had some guests stay here recently who loved this place and said it was their favourite.  They had toured the country staying in mainly Airbnb properties up to then which they found impersonal. They were so pleased to receive some personal service here and interact with someone who has lots of local knowledge and recommendations.  There is an army of guest houses and bed and breakfasts in Inverness to choose from.  Not only are their prices more affordable but they don’t fluctuate over the season and suddenly change when there’s a special event on.

Making the right accommodation choice is key to relaxing and enjoying your holiday.  We look forward to welcoming you here.

A look at our bedroom gallery to help you make a decision.

New Ways to Book Bannerman Bed and Breakfast

Try our new way to book Bannerman Bed and Breakfast

Fraser Room

When you look online at hotel accommodation do you get overwhelmed with all the choice?  Are you going to make the right decision?  Will it be cheaper somewhere else or will it be cheaper if I wait? To help you plan ahead and get organised we’ve introduced a new type of room rate.  Our cheapest rate is now the Non-Refundable Rate, which is booked in advance and cannot be cancelled.  In return for your commitment in advance, you are guaranteed the best price.

I know life isn’t always as simple as that.  It’s not always possible to plan ahead or to know for sure that something wont crop up and you have to change arrangements.  But for those occasions when you’re able to commit confidently our Non-Refundable Rate will ensure you get a bargain.  Maybe you’ve booked flights coming into Inverness Airport or theatre tickets at Eden Court or your going to a family wedding.  The dates are not going to change and you need somewhere to stay.

Two Night Stay for Two – £110

In the winter months there is also a discount for booking more than one night.  So if you’re planning a two night break in Inverness, it is just £110 bed and breakfast for two adults in total- perfect for a Christmas shopping trip in the Highland capital.  Normally this would be £150 for 2 nights.

I hope you’ll be able to take advantage of this way of booking.  We still have our Flexible Rate which allows you to amend or cancel your booking up to 3 days before the arrival date.  And for either rate no payment is taken in advance and you pay when you check out.  From time to time life can still throw unforeseen situations at us.  For these times we recommend taking out holiday insurance so you can avoid cancellation fees.

You can stop searching, make a booking and start looking forward to your next trip.

Eilean Donan Castle

Eilean Donan Castle

Inverness – the destination for all Outlander fans

Outlander fans don’t need me to tell them that Inverness is a key destination for all Outlander fans, readers and viewers alike.  In the unlikely event the story has passed you by, let me set the scene.  In 1946, after WWII, a young English woman called Claire Beauchamp Randall travel to the Scottish Highlands with her husband, Frank.  They have been separated for 6 years during the war and this is a second honeymoon for them.  They stay in Inverness, the destination for all Outlander Fans.

One day whilst walking on her own, Claire discovers a circle of standing stones.  She walks through a cleft in one of the stones and is instantly transported to 1743.  There begins a new life for Claire in a mysterious world where both her freedom and life are threatened.  She flees from the sadistic Jack Randall, who bares an uncanny resemblance to her husband Frank. Then Claire falls into the hands of a gang of Highland Scots, including the dashing Jamie Fraser.

Diana Gabaldon

The drama series is based on the books written by American author Diana Gabaldon and is one of the most watched shows.  Scenes for the fourth series were shot in Glasgow earlier this year.  Other Scottish locations have also been used, including Drumlanrig Castle in Dumfries and Galloway, Glen Coe, Blackness Castle, Doune Castle and Linlithgow Palace.  All have seen visitor numbers surge in what has been called the Outlander Effect.

Culloden Battlefield and Clava Cairnson the outskirts of Inverness are must-see places for your Outlander pilgrimage.  Culloden doesn’t feature in the TV drama but is a key part of the story.  The battlefield is very atmospheric and you can immerse yourself in the history of the place.  Nearby the Clava Cairns standing stones include one cairn with a curious split.

See the setting for Yourself

With the increase in visitors seeking Outlander knowledge, there has also been a rise in tour companies offering Outlander tours to fulfil this.  Companies include Outlandish ToursWow ScotlandOutlander – the Pastlives Experience   and the Jamie and Claire Tour

Delicious B&B breakfast

Delicious B&B breakfast

Breakfast Menu 2018

Now that we’re preparing for a busy season ahead, we’re ready to launch our updated breakfast menu for 2018.

When you’re away from home with full days of travelling or sightseeing it’s great to start the day with a tasty breakfast.  We like to provide options for all tastes whether you want to start the day with an indulgent fry-up or a healthy and nutritious bowl of porridge.  There are always vegetarian options and we also cater vegan and gluten free diets on request.  I have been asked a few times ‘do Scottish people eat all this for breakfast?’ which always makes me laugh.  It is optional and there’s lots of choices for different tastes.  No you don’t have to eat it all but it can be your fuel for the day, saving you from spending money on lunch.

Help yourself to the buffet

So you’ll still find all the favourite options like the Full Highland Breakfast but we’ve made a few additions.  The buffet selection has been extended to include stewed fruit and overnight oats.  We’ve been serving these for a little while now, we’ve tweaked the recipe here and there and eventually settled on a combination of oats soaked in almond milk flavoured with vanilla, figs and sultanas.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The hot choices have been updated too all cooked to order.  Scotland’s traditional breakfast, porridge, is a firm favourite.  We offer it the old-fashioned way –  just oats, water and salt.  Or you can add stewed fruit, jam, honey or sugar.  Warm tattie (potato) scones have been added to a few options and the very popular breakfast sandwiches are served with spicy tomato relish.

To get the season off to a fresh start we’ve also given the dining room a new look.  Hopefully we’ll have a decent summer and guests will enjoy views of the garden from here.  We hope you like the new look.

 

Walking distance from Inverness b&b

Eden Court Theatre  – A Cultural Hotspot!

"Bannerman

Eden Court Theatre, the cultural hotspot of the Scottish Highlands, is a magical centre for performing arts.  It has a broad programme of art and entertainment to suit all tastes and all ages.  There’s something for all whether you’re in to stand-up comedy, opera, musicals or traditional Scottish music.  With 2 theatres, a cinema, bar, restaurant and exhibition space there’s always plenty of choice on offer.  Over 300,000 people visit each year from throughout the Highlands.

The main theatre, the Empire, hosts productions by the Scottish Opera, the Scottish Ballet and a choral and classical programme.  We also get musicals on tour from the West End, well-known stand-up comediens and all sorts of great music acts.  There are also occasional talks including a memorable one from the Dalai Lama.

High Class Cinema

A varied programme of films is available in the cinema including the latest feature films and international choices.  All the theatres include comfortable well raked seating ensuring a good view wherever you sit.

Classes for All

The theatre works hard to support the local community.  A range of classes in creative skills, dance and drama are available and ensure continued interest in the theatre.  Former Dr Who’s assistant, Karen Gillan, began her acting career and part of the Senior Youth Group at Eden Court Theatre.

Food and Drink

There’s a comfortable bar and the restaurant overlooks the River Ness so it’s a great spot to stop for lunch whilst you watch the river view.  The striking building has a prime spot on the river, not too far from the Ness Island and Bught Park but also only 10 minutes walk from the centre of Inverness.

We recommend paying a visit to Eden Court whilst you stay in Inverness, especially if you’re staying here for a few nights.  Right now, we’re ready for Panto season and will also pay a visit to the Excusively Highlands Food and Craft Fair this weekend.

Bannerman Bed and Breakfast is ideally located if you are attending an event at Eden Court Theatre.  Check our rates page to find our competitive prices all year round.

World Porridge Making Championships took place this weekend in Carrbridge.  It was the 24th Annual Golden Spurtle World Porridge Making Championship, which happens each year in Carrbridge, Scotland since 1996.  Competitors from across the globe were there to fight for the coveted Golden Spurtle trophy and World Porridge Making Champion title.

Ellinor Carsson and Per Carlsson 2017’s World Porridge Making Champions, photo courtesy of James Ross

Congratulations go to Sweden’s Ellinor Persson.  She took the coveted title of World Porridge Making Champion.   Per Carlsson took the Speciality title. The 23-strong international line up included competitors from the USA, Russia, Switzerland, Holland, Iceland, Sweden and across the UK and Ireland.

The title of World Porridge Making Champion is awarded to the competitor who makes the best traditional porridge.  You can make it using only three ingredients – oatmeal, salt and water. The porridges are judged on three factors – consistency, taste and colour. 

The Speciality title is awarded for a dish comprising mainly of oats but can be sweet or savoury.  From the simple traditional recipe of oats, water and salt, so this competition celebrates the diversity of porridge.  Previous winners have included Sticky Toffee Porridge, Fruity Date Porridge and Pinhead Risotto with Lemon and Thyme and Parmesan.   This simple set of natural and healthy ingredients transform into hearty, flavoursome meals.

Health

Plain porridge oats and oatmeal are 100% natural with no added sugar, salt or additives.  They are naturally low in calories too.   An average bowl of porridge made with water is  only 171 calories.  Health experts say that oats have many health benefits.  Oats have a high content of complex carbohydrates and soluble fibre so they release energy slowly. A bowl of porridge for breakfast should provide the body with all the energy the body needs until lunch time.

World Porridge Making Championship 25th Anniversary

The Golden Spurtle trophy comes from the traditional wooden spurtle that is used to stir porridge.  Ready to test your porridge making skills?  There’s plenty of time to hone your skills to be ready for next year’s competition.  The village of Carrbridge will be pulling out the stops for the 25th anniversary.  Entry details can be found at www.goldenspurtle.com.

If you just want to visit the land of porridge, then look no further.  Bannerman Bed and Breakfast features porridge on the breakfast menu, so you can start your holiday with a nutritious bowl inside you.

 

dog-walking-inverness

Dog Walks around Inverness

As a lucky dog owner we are very fortunate to live in an area surrounded by beautiful scenery.  There’s a tremendous choice of dog walks around Inverness.  Our Highland dog, Hector, enjoys regular trips to the Ness Islands, Inverness, which is just a few minutes walk from here.  He also loves the beach and has several favourites.  We also like walks in the woods along trail paths, always better if there’s a bit of water nearby for a quick dip.  Best of all is when we walk with friends and their pooches, it’s great to sniff the Highland air with your chums around.

The Ness Islands

A fabulous, safe environment for dogs and children to walk and play.  The Ness Islands are a collection of small islands in the middle of the River Ness, connected by pedestrian bridges.  There are plenty of places to paddle in the river and you’re bound to meet other 4 legged friends there.  Even without a dog it’s a must see for visitors to Inverness.  It’s very close to the town centre yet it’s tranquil with some huge old trees and wildlife to see.

Beaches

Our favourites are Dornoch, Rosemarkie and Nairn.  Each is a car ride away but worth the trip.  A good stretch of the legs on the beach can be followed up with coffee and cake at the Rosemarkie Beach Cafe for the dog owners.  Whilst the cafe thoughtfully provides water bowls and dog biscuits for our charges.

Walks in the Woods around Inverness

To get away from it all we like to walk in the woods around Inverness.  Craig Phadraic is within Inverness and gives a terrific view of the city from one of the highest points.  Ord Hill is just over the Moray Firth on the Black Isle and one of our favourites is Aldourie woods near the village of Dores.  It backs on to the shore of Loch Ness  so it gives the dogs a chance to cool their paws in the water.

Dog Walks around Inverness

Ord Hill overlooking the Moray Firth

Here’s a selection of Hector’s dog walks around Inverness with some of his paw pals.  if you’re wondering how we get the dogs to sit so beautifully for the photos, there’s a great deal of shouting going on in the background!

 

Dog walks around Inverness

Aldourie Woods on the banks of Loch Ness

Dog Walks around Inverness

Hector and Gordon Kanyewestie

Dog walks around Inverness

Hector and Alfie at the beach near Nairn

Dog Walks around Inverness

Fun at the beach

 

North Coast 500 is a route of 516 miles of the most stunning coastal scenery in the highlands of Scotland.  It starts and ends in Inverness and takes in places like Ullapool, Durness, John O’Groats and Dornoch.

nc500map

Many visitors to the north don’t realise quite how much there is to see beyond Inverness but this route shows off the rich heritage of the Scottish Highlands.  From Inverness the route heads to the dramatic west coast across to Applecross and then north to Gairloch, Poolewe and Ullapool.  Then it’s up the north west coast to Durness and along the north coast right across to John O’Groats, the furthest north on the mainland of the UK.  Then it’s back to Inverness taking in the softer landscape of the east coast.

A straight forward loop but whilst you will enjoy the most fantastic scenery the roads can be challenging in places with single track driving in parts, although there are plenty of passing places.  This isn’t a journey to rush but one to savour with meandering country roads and some of the most beautiful countryside in the world.  You will enjoy golden sandy beaches, mountains, lochs and rugged coastal roads.  You will be spoilt for choice for walks and hikes along the route.

What shall we see?

This is also a great opportunity to find out more about the history of Scotland from the many cultural attractions including castles, museums and heritage centres.  Dunrobin Castle, Timespan Heritage Centre, Ullapool Museum are all fascinating places to visit.  You can also take in the rich food and drink heritage and sample local specialities along the way.  As well as a vast choice of accommodation and eating options you can also visit farm shops, distilleries and examples of cottage industry providing locally sourced produce.  The Caithness Smokehouse, Rock Rose Gin Distillery, Cocoa Mountain and the Black Isle Brewery are just a few examples.

 

Where do we start?

To help plan your trip around the North Coast 500 NC500 is the place to start with full details of the route and what you will find along the way.

 

Bannerman B&B

Bannerman B&B

Bannerman Achieves 4 Star Status

4 star logoWe are delighted to announce that we have been awarded 4 star status by VisitScotland. Following the annual assessment by the tourist organisation, VisitScotland were pleased to upgrade our rating to 4 star.

A great deal of work and investment in the property over the last 8 years has given this great achievement.  We strive to maintain and improve standards and provide friendly and helpful service, so it’s wonderful to know it has paid off.  It is also thanks to the wonderful guests who take time to post positive reviews on Tripadvisor and share their experiences with other travellers.

The Early Days

I bought Bannerman Bed and Breakfast in 2006 and back then it didn’t have a name, let alone any trade.  The building was known as Kilmory and had been used as staff accommodation for a group of large guest houses.  At the time there were no plants in the garden or pictures on the walls, so I had a blank canvas to work with.   But I knew Inverness was a great location to visit and being on the main road to Loch Ness, Skye and Fort William made it an ideal spot.  The house had huge potential and seemed to be a perfect size.

The last 9 years have involved continual re-investment in the property and enhancing the facilities and services offered.  This has included a new front door, insulating a couple of bedrooms, 2 websites, new signage, developing the breakfast menu, overhauling the garden and several coats of paint.  This January we completed the refurbishment of all the bathrooms.

Going Forward

Of course this business is always evolving.  Priorities change and guest expectations continue to rise as they should do.  Back in 2006 most guests wanted to know if the bedrooms had ensuite facilities and now it’s just assumed that they do.  Now the first question is ‘what’s the password for the Wifi?’  We will continue to listen to guests, make improvements and maintain our standards.

Highland campervan

Highland Campervans – Freedom of the Road

For a great way to make the most of Scotland’s stunning scenery, hiring a campervan gives you access to every corner of the landscape. Providing both transport and a bed for the night, a campervan gives you the ultimate freedom of the road.  Hiring a super little campervan means maximum flexibility to plan your trip wherever the road takes you.  Or you can just adapt your plans around the ever-changing weather forecast.

Take in Inverness

Inverness is a perfect base to start and finish your highland adventure.  There are excellent transport links by air, train and road. You can take in the local landmarks, like Culloden and Urquhart Castle.  And enjoy the wonderful range of restaurants, night life and accommodation before heading out in your chosen chariot.

Highland Campervans are conveniently located near the airport and will take time to match you with the right vehicle.  They offer comprehensive pre-hire advice to ensure you have the most suitable campervan or motorhome to suit your needs.  In addition they offer unlimited mileage and 24 hour support during your holiday.  The hire fleet includes  vehicles suitable for the remoter roads in the far reaches of the Scottish Highlands.  They’re also narrow enough to fit in a standard parking space.  And of course they include a few home comforts.  Whether you choose to sleep underneath the stars or in a fixed bed in the van, there’s still a shower and toilet on board.  The full fleet is fuel-efficient which will come in handy in the remotest parts of the country.

From their base near Inverness you can head in any direction to get on the road and start enjoying your holiday.  So what more do you need to enjoy the trip of a lifetime.  There’s breathtaking scenery, the freedom of the road in a modern, comfortable campervan with a few home comforts thrown in.