Scotland Tours Search
Islay and Speyside Whisky Tour including Edinburgh
Tour Theme: Whisky Tours
This tour starts from: Edinburgh
Duration: 8 Days / 7 Nights
Combining our two specialist whisky tours this 8 day tour is a must for all Scottish whisky enthusiasts. Explore the distilleries of the Isle of Islay and immerse yourself in their distinctive peaty aromas. This tour returns to Edinburgh where you will experience a lunch at the exclusive members club of the Scotch Malt Whisky Society before heading on your next tour to Speyside, home to the greatest number of distilleries of any of the whisky-producing areas of Scotland. Speysides light, sweet single malts are a great contrast to the peaty Islay whiskies.
DAY 1: EDINBURGH - GLASGOW - LOCH LOMOND - INVERARY - KILMARTIN - KENNACRAIG - BOWMORE
Leaving Edinburgh at 08.30 you will head west through Scotland’s largest city, Glasgow along Loch Lomond then west through the mountains to the beautiful little village of Inveraray on the banks of Loch Fyne. Here you can perhaps sample some of the local seafood for lunch or just explore the historic town itself. After lunch you will then travel through Argyll and into the ancient Kingdom of Dalriada. There are more than 350 prehistoric monuments within a six-mile radius of the village of Kilmartin. We will stop here to see the mysterious stone circles and standing stones and visit the community museum. From here it is a short drive to Kennacraig where we catch the early evening ferry to Islay. The sail is just over 2 hours and you should look out for wildlife such as dolphins, whales and seabirds. On arrival on Islay is is a short drive to Bowmore for your 3 night stay. Please see accommodation notes below.
DAY 2: BOWMORE - EXPLORE ISLAY
A full day exploring Islay. The itinerary today is quite flexible with a mixture of beautiful scenery, white sand beaches, short walks and of course the famous Islay whiskies - renowned for their strong peaty flavours and nurtured by the salty sea air. In the morning we will take the short drive to the west of the island via Saligo Bay for a visit to Kilchoman Distillery (the newest and smallest on the island) with the option of a coastal walk to Machair Bay for any non-whisky lovers. After lunch here you will travel to the tiny harbour village of Portnahaven (look out for seals) then take the back roads along the west coast with its lovely sandy bays, on the way back to Bowmore. You will have the chance to visit Bowmore distillery or just relax and explore the village
DAY 3: BOWMORE - EXPLORE ISLAY
Another day in paradise! Today you will explore the southern side of the island, home to the smokiest and peatiest of all whiskies – Laphroaig, Lagavulin and Ardbeg. We will make photo stops at the first two then visit Ardbeg for a tour, tasting and lunch. The restaurant here is a beautiful place to relax and enjoy local produce as well as some unique whisky. While in the area we will visit the ruins of Kildalton church with its famous 8th Century Celtic cross. In the afternoon there will be the option to spend some free time in Bowmore village. Here you can visit the famous Round Church, Bowmore Distillery itself (June – Aug) or just relax with a quiet drink looking out over the water. Alternatively you could continue with the tour to Bridgend where we will visit the community craft producers (and brewery!) at Islay House Square or take a walk through the woods along the nearby River Sorn.
DAY 4: BOWMORE - OBAN - GLASGOW/EDINBURGH
This morning you take the ferry back to the mainland then travel up the coast to Oban – a busy harbour town and the main ferry port for the islands. Here we will drop off anyone who is continuing on the Mull, Iona and Isle of Skye extension. The others will have some free time to explore the town, have a late lunch or even pop into Oban Distillery before departing for the return trip to Glasgow and Edinburgh. Return time approx. 20.00 and overnight in Edinburgh. Clients will have to make their own way to the hotel.
DAY 5: EDINBURGH
Free day to explore Edinburgh, the historic capital of Scotland. There are so many options available here - why not take a local open top city bus tour to familiarise yourself with the 'old' and 'new' towns of the city. No visit to Edinburgh would be complete without a visit to her medieval castle. Sitting on a volcanic plug there is no other city in Europe to offer a setting quite as unique as that of the castle rising high above the majestic Princes street gardens, to the hustle and bustle of the city’s first new town, and the main thoroughfare awash with designer shops.
Lunch is booked for you at the Scotch Malt Whisky Society, a private members club of whisky enthusiasts from all over the world. A 2 course lunch will be served in the excellent restaurant, following by a tasting of 2 special cask whiskies in the members rooms.
Overnight again in Edinburgh.
DAY 6: EDINBURGH - DUNKELD - PITLOCHRY (DALWHINNIE DISTILLERY) - CAIRNGORM NATIONAL PARK - GRANTOWN ON SPEY
Departing from Edinburgh at 09.00 your three-day Scotch Whisky adventure starts with the journey north into the Highlands. The first stop will be the historic village of Dunkeld for a short walk through the forest to some atmospheric waterfalls. After lunch in Pitlochry you will make your first distillery visit at Dalwhinnie – the highest distillery in the country and the closest to the source of the River Spey. From here you follow the river north through the Cairngorm National Park to the small town of Grantown on Spey - your base for the next two nights.
DAY 7: GRANTOWN - BENROMACH DISTILLERY - ELGIN - ABERLOUR -SPEYSIDE COOPERAGE - GRANTOWN
A whole day exploring Scotland’s most famous whisky region. After a scenic drive toward the coast your first stop of the day will be at the family owned Benromach Distillery for a personalised tour. From here it is a short distance to Elgin – home to Gordon and Macphail – one of the world’s leading specialist whisky bottlers and suppliers. After lunch in Elgin you will travel back up the Spey valley to Aberlour for a visit to the distillery there and time permitting, make a stop at the Speyside Cooperage in nearby Craigellachie. From here is back to Grantown on Spey.
DAY 8: GRANTOWN - GLENLIVET DISTILLERY - BALMORAL CASTLE - BRAEMAR - PERTHSHIRE - EDINBURGH
Takes you through the beautiful Cairngorm Mountains on route back to Edinburgh. In the morning you will explore Glenlivet – not just a distillery but also a beautiful glen with great walks and wonderful wildlife. Later you will pass by the famous Balmoral Castle and stop in the village of Braemar in the heart of the National Park. From here the routesouth passes over Scotland’s highest mountain pass then through Perthshire before arriving back in Edinburgh.
Please note – itinerary and distillery visits are subject to variation throughout the season and may not be the same described above, however there will always be a minimum of 8 distillery visits during the holiday.
For departure details refer to the "Prices, Dates, and What's Included" Section...
ISLAY, EDINBURGH AND SPEYSIDE 8 DAY WHISKY HOLIDAY!!
Operated by: Rabbies Trail Burners Rank 6
- 2 Day Tour of Loch Ness and Inverness
- Isle of Skye and Highlands Scotland Tour
- Scotland Highland Explorer Tour
- Outer Hebrides Tour Experience - Skye, Harris and Lewis
- Islay Whisky Adventure Tour Scotland
- Speyside Whisky Trail Tour Scotland
- Orkney Islands and Far North of Scotland Tour
- more Scotland Tours