Nairn Central beach is a sandy, accessible beach fringed by dunes with a hinterland of an open, grassy links area. It has beautiful views across the Moray Firth to the Black Isles. The coastline is home to a resident school of dolphins. There are first aid provisions provided by the leisure centre at the west end of the beach. Nearby there is a small cafe and an excellent play area.
Nairn, formerly split into Scottish Gaelic- and Scots-speaking communities, was a town of two halves. The narrow-streeted fishertown surrounds a harbour built by Thomas Telford while Victorian villas stand in the 'West End'.
It was not until the 1860s that Nairn became a respectable and popular holiday town. Following the opening of the Nairn railway station in 1855, new houses and hotels were built in the elegant West End. The station is on the Aberdeen to Inverness Line. Originally this was the last stop on the line from London due to the inhospitable terrain on what is now the main Dava branch line to Inverness.
Fine views across the turquoise waters of the Moray Firth and pretty harbour. The harbour and beach are a good place for spotting wildlife – the Moray Firth is home to a school of dolphins. In the summer months’ boats from the harbour take day trippers out on dolphin-spotting trips.
Central Beach occupies the area closest to the town's leisure facilities. Lying to the west of the river Nairn, Central Beach has pristine white sands fringed by low dunes. Located beside the Nairn Beach Area is an 18 hole mini golf putting green and new to the beach area is a 10 station outdoor gym where young and old can work out.
Located centrally of the Beach next to the Café is a newly developed Splash pad that has recently replaced the paddling pool and will be opened seasonally 10am - 6pm (weather dependent). The Splash pad project has been funded by the Team Hamish Appeal and Nairn Common Good Fund in memory of eight year old Hamish Hey who died of cancer in 2017 and his mum Susan who died in 2020.
The Splash pad includes 17 water features, including water canons, jets, geysers and sprinklers.
The beach is approximately half a mile from the train station and a quarter of a mile from the nearest bus station.
Water quality information
This beach is a designated bathing water site. An electric sign displaying real-time bathing water quality predictions is available at this beach between 1 June - 15 September. You can also find out the daily prediction by visiting the SEPA website. Please observe local signage and only swim where it is safe to do so.
Toilets open all year round: Summer 8am - 8pm, Winter 8am - 5pm