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Scotland's Best B&Bs

Whisky

Whether in the Gaelic 'uisge beatha' or in the Latin 'aqua vitae', whisky is the 'water of life' and the drink has been enjoyed in Scotland since the 15th century when King James IV granted it a king's commission. Since then this amber nectar has been enjoyed in every corner of the world but it is only in Scotland that it can be seen to be made and sampled in the many distilleries by visitors.

Visiting Distilleries

There are over 120 malt whisky distilleries spread throughout Scotland and over 70 of them have tours and visitor centres where visitors can enjoy the smells and traditions of the centuries’ old process. They are right across Scotland and on the Islands and each one has its own individual and distinctive taste which visitors can sample at the end of their tour.

There are only a few main areas for producing whisky; from the peaty, smoky flavours of Jura and Campbeltown to the nutty stronger malts of the Highlands, to the fruity single malts of Speyside, where half of all Scottish whisky is produced and there is an unique Whisky Trail.

Ask your host about the distilleries they recommend in their area....they're sure to have tested them all for you

  • Cupar hosts the Fife Whisky Festival from 4 - 6 March 2022.
  • The Spirit of Speyside whisky festival runs from 27 April - 2 May 2022 and features numerous events in various venues around Elgin and the north east of Scotland.
  • The Highland Whisky Festival showcases distilleries along the North Coast 500 for a week in May.
  • World Whisky Day is on 21 May 2022.
  • On the Isle of Islay, the Festival Of Music And Malt takes place from 27 May - 4 June 2022 with traditional music, ceilidhs, whisky tasting and more.
  • Dumfries hosts the Drambusters Whisky Festival on 11 June 2022.
  • The Dramathon is a new race on 15 October 2022 following the Speyside Way from Glenfarclas distillery to Glenfiddich distillery. You can pick up the corresponding miniatures at the end of the race! Do the full or half marathon, 10K or relay race.
  • The Dornoch Whisky Festival takes place from 28 - 30 October 2022 in the Scottish Highlands.

A Learning Experience

All ages of visitors to Scotland can learn about the history of the national drink through the story-telling of the illicit stills hidden in the secret mountain glens and the gangs of smugglers being chased by the Redcoats and the Excise men. The new Scotch Whisky Experience near Edinburgh Castle provides all the sights and sounds of the history of whisky and also visit the Diageo Claive Vidiz Scotch Whisky Collection which is the world’s largest collection of Scotch Whiskies.

The world renowned and unique Whisky Trail through Aberdeenshire and Morayshire is a 'must' for visitors as it allows the visitor to follow a defined trail of distilleries with different experiences. Also a trip to the Speyside Cooperage near Dufftown will interest the whole family where the only UK making of the barrels for the whisky industry can be seen at first hand.

Scotch malt whiskies tend to be grouped within a number of regional categories, usually Speyside, Highland, Campbelton, Islay, Islands and Lowland, although sub-divisions are frequently made within these categories.

Such classifications really exist for geographical convenience rather than stylistic simplicity. Within each classification there will be major variations of character, which is one of the factors that make Scotch malt whisky such a fascinating subject.

Whisky is an iconic product in Scotland and it is deep into the culture of this country through being produced using the best of natural home grown barley and imbued with the distinctive special waters found in all parts of Scotland. Come and enjoy it.

Click on the links below to find whisky distilleries by region:

Whisky in Aberdeen, Grampian and Moray

Whisky in Argyll, The Isles. Loch Lomond, Stirling and The Forth Valley

Whisky in Ayrshire and Arran

Whisky in Dumfries and Galloway

Whisky in Edinburgh and The Lothians

Whisky in Glasgow, The Clyde Valley and Lanarkshire

Whisky in The Highlands and The Isle of Skye

Whisky in Perthshire

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