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About Nairn

Where is Nairn?

Nairn is on the shores of the beautiful Moray Firth in Scotland, home to the Bottle nose Dolphins, seals and whales.

It is an area steeped in ancient myths and legends, history and mystery. A few miles away is Culloden Battlefield and the Burial Cairns and the Standing Stones of Clava.

Dolphins in the Moray Firth
Clava Burial Cairns
Culloden Battlefield
Dolphins in the Moray Firth
Photo courtesy Peter Asprey
Clava Burial Cairns
Photo courtesy © Doug Houghton
Culloden Battlefield
Photo courtesy © Doug Houghton

Early History of Nairn

Rich in Faerie Lore with several Faerie Hillocks nearby, the biggest now a cemetery called Tomnahuirich, in Inverness.

The early inhabitants of Nairn were the Picts, and Nairn was subjected to Viking invasions until the tenth century.

Nairn looking over towards the Black Isle Nairn began life as an important commercial centre in the 12th century, and by the early 17th century had grown to such an extent that King James VI was able to boast of a town in his northern kingdom so large that people at one end of the High Street didn't understand the language spoken by those at the other end (the different languages being English and Gaelic).

 I am descended from the old part of town which spoke the Gaelic. Many fisher people believe they are direct descendants from the Vikings.

Nairn looking over towards the Black Isle      
Photo courtesy © Doug Houghton                 


Nairn Climate

Nairn has it's own micro climate and is claimed to be the driest and sunniest climate in the whole of Scotland!

Just along the east coast lies the buried village of Nevistoun lying under the Culbin sands. Although covered with forestry commission trees now at one time it was a thriving community with a continental climate.

Legend has it citrus fruits were grown, having it's own micro climate due to the mild weather caused by the Gulf stream which enters the Moray Firth. A severe storm buried the entire village one night in the autumn of 1694.

Before the extensive planting of trees by the forestry commission to stabilise the sand drifts, locals would gather following sandstorms and often see the roof of the old mansion house or sometimes of farm steadings protruding through the sands. 

River Findhorn
River Findhorn           Findhorn Bridge
Photos courtesy © Doug Houghton


Loss of The Timber Wolf in Findhorn

Timber WolfAt nearby Findhorn in the upper reaches of the River Findhorn, the last wolf in Scotland was reputedly killed in 1743, two years before the Battle of Culloden. Legend tells he was large and black.

As a wolf lover, it seems a terrible loss to the Highlands with the extinction of these wonderful creatures. Not only  were they so revered by the ancient Picts they feature on many of their carved  standing stones but they kept the population of wild red deer in balance.

Findhorn remains a place of mystery and now is home to the world famous Findhorn Community.

Timber Wolf                          
Look into these eyes!  They look into your very soul.    

Prophecies, Seers & The Second Sight

Although born on the Isle of Lewis, Kenneth Mackenzie otherwise known as the 'Brahan Seer' played a major part in ancient history in the area in the 17th century. He was a very powerful  seer and unusually, for that time, used a divining stone for his predictions.

It is not known exactly which stone probably a crystal but other seers of ancient times usually had  spontaneous visions  (although some of them used the blade bone of a sheep.)  He met his grisly and self predicted end directly across the firth from Nairn on the Black Isle, boiled alive upside down  in a spiked  barrel of burning tar... but that is another story. (Not always a good idea to have the "Second Sight" in those days!)


Music Track: Stealaway