True Highlands Blog
The Highland Military Tattoo is a unique and truly authentic experience. Set inside the magnificent ramparts of Fort George near Inverness, this spectacular military ceremony showcases impressive acts, reflecting the very best of Scottish history, tradition and military expertise.
With a broad appeal and a worldwide audience, the Highland Tattoo attracts visitors from many global countries, along with a faithful local following, returning to see new acts within an annually changing show.
Inverness remains ever popular as a tourist destination and its status as Capital of the Highlands, affords the city superb communication links, by road, rail, air and sea. The gateway city offers visitors an ideal location to stay whilst touring the wider Highlands, Speyside and Moray area and is on the doorstep of Fort George, making the Highland Tattoo a perfect way to spend an evening, whilst touring Scotland’s northern reaches.
The Highland Military Tattoo experience starts, rather aptly, with a walk across the drawbridge into the Fort and the opportunity to sample high quality affordable food and drink in the Catering and Retail Village next door to the Tattoo arena. Packed with retail stalls, Armed Forces charity tents, military vehicle and equipment displays and re-enactors who are delighted to involve children and answer any questions.
Access to the Fort is of course free when attending the Tattoo and visitors are invited to take a stroll onto the ramparts and admire Fort George’s classical buildings and examine its large cannons and mortars, which defended it and the sea route to Inverness. There’s a good chance of spotting dolphins in the Moray Firth too!
Overhead, there will be an aerial display by an SE5A World War 1 Biplane, to herald the imminent start of the show and an invite for guests to take their seats.
Seating is within three main stands, wrapped around the arena, with the Fort’s frontage as the iconic backdrop to the Tattoo.
In Visit Scotland’s Year of History Heritage and Archaeology, the programme will celebrate the rich military heritage of Fort George, the Highlands and Moray, and the 75th anniversary of the RAF Regiment.
The show in fact commences with a Fly-past by RAF Typhoon jets, directly overhead of the main arena and signals the start to the evening’s entertainment.
In this, the 4th year of the Highland Military Tattoo at the UK’s largest military Fort, the event shall not only celebrate Scotland’s Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology but also the 75th birthday of the RAF Regiment.
A fitting tribute and a highlight of this year’s Tattoo shall be with a performance from the Queen’s Colour Squadron of the Royal Air Force. The specialist unit is charged with the safe-keeping of the Queen’s Colour for the RAF in the United Kingdom and is manned by officers and men from the RAF Regiment.
Performing at ceremonial events throughout the UK, the squadron has formed guards of honour for visiting heads of state and mounted the guard at Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle and The Tower of London. Their precise marching routines and enthralling performance shall celebrate the 75th birthday of the RAF Regiment, entertaining the crowds at this year’s Highland Tattoo.
An array of Massed Pipes and Drums from some 9 military and local bands, The Band of the Royal Regiment of Scotland, historical vignettes, traditional highland dancing, a clarsach group, Gaelic singing, the Queen’s Colour Squadron Drill Team from the RAF Regiment and an Armed Forces’ competition with teams from the Royal Marines, Army and RAF battling it out; additionally, all take place during the course of the show.
The finale with the RAF Guard of Honour, a rendition of Auld Lang Syne and The Last Post followed by the Lone Piper, offer an often, emotional conclusion to the evening’s events; prior to an impressive fireworks display, to celebrate the end of the Tattoo.
The Highland Military Tattoo is fast becoming a ‘must-see’ event in the Scottish tourism schedule, offering locals and visitors alike, a unique opportunity to immerse themselves in the heritage and culture of the Scottish Highlands and Moray against the backdrop of the spectacular Fort George.
“We look forward to giving all our visitors a warm ‘Gaelic Welcome’ in September”. Major General Seymour Monro
Tags: bagpipes, events in september, events scotland, family events, festival, fort george, highland events, highlanders, inverness events, military events, military tattoo, piping, scottish event