For those looking to enjoy a whisky tour starting in Edinburgh, then this is the post from you. There will be three parts to this tour guide, so make sure to keep an eye out on our upcoming posts. The first post is perfect for those looking for a busy one day trip, so if you don’t have several days to spare, then this is the guide for you!
This guide takes you from Edinburgh and includes some wonderful scenery, tourist destinations. It can be done in a day (so long as you don’t drink and drive) or be extended into a 2-3 day trip if you would prefer to enjoy tasting your whisky, whilst also including various outdoor pursuits and a meal at a Michelin starred restaurant!
The tour includes up to eight distilleries and although they are all classified as highland distilleries provides a wide range of styles and different visitor experiences. You might think that once you’ve visited a distillery, you’ve visited all distilleries, but these eight will demonstrate how even if there are only four “ingredients” that make malt whisky (malt, water, cask, and time) the result can be infinitely different.
The One Day Trip
To cram this trip in to one day, you should start with Tullibardine Distillery at Blackford (a few miles away from the famous Gleneagles Hotel) or Blair Atholl Distillery in Pitlochry, optionally you can visit Edradour Distillery whilst at Pitlochry (although currently it is closed to the public but this might change at a later date, so make sure to check the website before visiting) and maybe travel 30 miles north to Dalwhinnie Distillery.
We suggest that you try to finish with Glengoyne Distillery close to Glasgow, which sometimes is one distillery too far with most visitor centres/distillery shops only open between 10.00am and 5.00pm (you might find it too much of a rush, but there is always the option if you have enough time before 5pm).
Obviously how many distilleries you can visit, in a day, depends on how long you spend at each distillery, but it is feasible to visit six of these distilleries in one day if you are only focused on purchasing distillery exclusive bottles.
Add in any distillery tours, for which you could add between 45 minutes to 2 hours for each one, then this becomes a multi-day trip, and you are best to book the tours on-line prior to arrival. Although most distilleries will try and accommodate you if you have not booked, you may need to wait an hour or two before the next available tour.
It is also worth checking distillery websites as some of the best tours may only occur infrequently, even only monthly. As you’ll see, there can be a lot for non-whisky drinkers to do on this trip, and you will need to keep them happy, if you indulge your love of whisky to the full. The good news is that drivers who go on distillery tours will be given any samples in a bottle, to try at home.
For directions just put Blackford, Pitlochry, Dalwhinnie, Aberfeldy, Crieff, Deanston, Dumgoyne into the car’s sat nav. Once at the town/village, local signage will get you to the distillery. Total trip distance from Edinburgh to Edinburgh including all distilleries, in the order listed, is approximately 310 miles, so more likely a multi-day trip than all in one.
Starting with Tullibardine and skipping Dalwhinnie makes this a 234 mile trip, whilst starting with Blair Atholl, skipping Dalwhinnie and then following the list, provides a slightly shorter route of 214 miles.
And there you have, the quick guide to spending a day enjoying highland whiskies from Edinburgh. If you have an extra couple of days to spare and want to extend your trip, then keep your eyes peeled for our next post which will have a more in depth plan of action for you!