Opened in 1993 by Prince Edward, Inverness Botanic Gardens, formerly known as the Floral Hall and Gardens, are an oasis of calm and beauty within walking distance of the bustling city centre.
With each new season the gardens are an explosion of colour and texture with borders planted to demonstrate a wide variety of plants and growing conditions. The impressive glasshouses reveal the drama of plant diversity ranging from the tropical rainforests to arid, heat scorched desert.
In the Tropical House which mimics the hot, humid tropical regions of the world, the plantings are a mixture of the familiar and the spectacular. Some of our most popular house plants derive from the rainforests and can be seen growing alongside important economic crops such as coffee. A waterfall cascades into a pond filled with friendly Koi carp, surrounded by showy tender plants such as bougainvillea, bird of paradise plants and orchids.
In the adjoining cactus house, the amazing sculptural shapes of hundreds of species of cacti are planted among 75 tonnes of rock and it is a stunning reminder of the beauty of these plants which survive in the harshest of environments.
The outside gardens are sheltered by a high stone wall and are richly planted with display beds, trees, shrubs, herbs and herbaceous borders. Our younger visitors enjoy discovering the wooden carvings such as teddy bears and meerkats peeping out from among the plants.
Beyond the formal gardens a high level rockery, varied wild flower areas and charming country garden plantings are lovingly cared for by trainees on the Garden Project for Adults with Learning Disabilities.
Locally raised plants, many of which are cultivated by our gardeners and demonstrated in the gardens and glasshouses are available to buy from our sales area at great prices.
No trip to Inverness Botanic Gardens would be complete without a visit to the on-site Cobbs Café where a tempting selection of home-baked cakes, soup, sandwiches and light snacks is served alongside speciality teas and freshly ground coffee. In addition to seating inside, the café boasts a sunny terrace overlooking the gardens providing the perfect spot for al fresco morning coffee or afternoon tea. Children are catered for with special lunch boxes filled with sandwiches and treats, and there is also a gluten free range of home baking.
The Inverness Botanic Gardens is also a popular venue for wedding photography – offering the beauty of a sub-tropical environment but guaranteed rain free! For more details about hiring the Botanic Gardens for wedding photographs and evening civil marriage ceremonies just give our wedding partners, Loch Ness Country House Hotel a call on 01463 235012.
The Inverness Botanic Gardens makes a wonderful year round destination and as this year is our 20th anniversary we have lots of exciting plans afoot to celebrate these beautiful and much loved gardens.
We are graded as a 3 Star visitor attraction by Visit Scotland and our project for people with learning disabilities won the Green Apple Gold Award for Scottish Councils for its environmental practices.