It is thought that the River Spey was crossed by a ferry near here in Pictish times. Industrialisation came early, with sawmills established in the area from 1728, and by 1730 there was an iron furnace nearby using local charcoal to smelt ore from the Cairngorms.
In 1863 two railway lines were built along the line of the River Spey, one on each side. These met at Boat of Garten, from where one crossed the Spey and followed a route through Nethy Bridge to Dufftown. Both closed in the 1960s.
The line on the north-west of the Spey is being steadily brought back into use by the Strathspey Railway, while that on the south-east side forms the route of the Speyside Way long distance path from Nethy Bridge to Grantown on Spey, now the extension to Aviemore has been completed.
Today's Nethy Bridge is an attractively dispersed settlement focusing on the narrow stone bridge over the River Nethy. Paths and grassy areas flank the river as it flows through the village. Surrounding the bridge is a small collection of village shops and a range of hotels and other accommodation providers of varying sizes. The largest is the Nethy Bridge Hotel facing its gardens across the main road through the village. Overlooking the village from the north is the Mountview Hotel.
Following the minor road north from the bridge over the River Nethy for a mile brings you to a bridge over the River Spey. On the far side of the bridge is the Strathspey Railway's most northerly station, Broomhill, and its most recently opened. During the long operating season you can catch steam trains from here to Boat of Garten and Aviemore.
An odd thing about Broomhill Station is that competition between different railway companies led to it being called Nethy Bridge from 1923. This must have caused no end of confusion to travellers of the day, with two different Nethy Bridge stations in existence, one the wrong side of the River Spey. Thankfully the Strathspey Railway chose to revert to the original name of Broomhill when reopening the station.