A Highlands and West Coast Whisky Tour

Experience an unforgettable tour of Scotland, discovering exclusive single cask, single malts from over 128 different distilleries. Be guided through some of the finest and most secret experiences of Scotland including a stay at the Balmoral Hotel, The Vaults at Leith and Loch Lomond National Park.

Drive past the imposing Ben Nevis, Scotland’s highest mountain and stay on the stunning Isle of Eriska on the West coast – the most idyllic of locations – before heading back to Inverness.

 

 

Day 1: Arrival into Edinburgh

You’ll be welcomed at Edinburgh Airport by your chauffeur/guide who will accompany you on your trip.
Spend the remainder of the day exploring the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Old Town, characterised by narrow closes and cobbled streets. Visit Edinburgh Castle, sitting high above the city on its volcanic rock – highlights start as soon as you step out on the Esplanade.

Towards the end of the day, head to The Scotch Whisky Experience on Castle Hill to view the Claive Vidiz Collection – the largest collection of Scottish whiskies in the world. A special Scotch Malt Whisky Society welcome at the hotel of your choice.

The Balmoral Hotel
The Rocco Forte Collection’s 5* Balmoral is a luxury hotel in the true sense of the word. While many Edinburgh hotels claim to have Edinburgh’s landmarks on their doorstep, few can say their doorstep is a landmark.

Greywalls Hotel
Greywalls Hotel is one of the very best country house accommodations in Scotland and is uniquely situated on the edge of Muirfield Championship golf course with stunning views over East Lothian and the Firth of Forth. Greywalls was built in 1901 and still retains the charm and character for which it is renowned.

Day 2: Edinburgh - East Lothian

Enjoy a visit to the Glenkinchie Distillery, known as the Lowland Malt, for a tour and tasting this morning. The East Lothian malt is described as being bright gold in colour, a hint of floral notes, sweet with a slight liquorice aftertaste and a dry finish.

Perhaps drive on to the wonderful town of North Berwick for a relaxing walk along the beach and a casual lunch at one of the local restaurants. Enjoy a visit to the ruins of Tantallon Castle this afternoon with amazing views out to sea, or alternatively take a walk around the gardens at Lennoxlove House. Return to your hotel later in the afternoon.

This evening dine at The Scotch Malt Whisky Society’s Member’s Rooms at The Vaults or 28 Queen Street. The Vaults in Leith are one of Scotland’s oldest commercial buildings, with original vaults dating back to the 13th century. The Queen Street venue is a collection of elegant rooms within a beautifully restored Georgian townhouse.

These dining options offer a traditional or a modern Scottish experience and are hugely atmospheric, with the room reserved exclusively for your party. For a complete experience indulge with a bespoke single cask, single malt whisky tasting, presented by your personal Society Whisky Ambassador and tailored to suit each party.

Day 3: East Lothian - Loch Lomond - Isle of Eriska

Drive north from Edinburgh this morning to explore the Loch Lomond National Park and enjoy a cruise on the amazing Steamship Sir Walter Scott along Loch Katrine.

Continuing north you will then arrive at the foothills of the Highlands and the Glenturret Distillery. Dating back to 1775, the Glenturret is Scotland’s oldest working distillery, which not only is home to Glenturret but of course the internationally renowned Famous Grouse brand. Learn about milling, mashing, fermenting and distilling before being introduced to The Famous Family: The Snow Grouse, The Black Grouse and The Famous Grouse.

Learn a little of the characteristics that make up a Highlands, Lowland and Island malt, to name but three, plus of course those that are distinctive to the Glenturret label. Following your visit you will drive on to the Isle of Eriska for a wonderful dinner and your overnight stay.

Day 4: Isle of Eriska - Fort William

Take a scenic drive past mighty Ben Nevis, Scotland’s highest mountain and continue through spectacular and eerie Glen Coe, site of the infamous Clan Battle in 1692 between Clan Macdonald and Clan Campbell.

Enjoy lunch in a restaurant in Oban and then take a tour of this picturesque waterfront town including a private visit of the distillery. Dating back to 1794, the distillery is one of our oldest and certainly one of our most charming and traditional. To complete the visit, enjoy a nosing and tasting in the distillery with your expert guide.

Check into Eriska on the west coast of Scotland , located on its own private 300-acre island accessed by bridge. It sits on the water’s edge and it is quite possibly the most idyllic of locations.

Day 5: Loch Ness

Drive to Scotland’s most famous stretch of water, Loch Ness. There can be no better way to experience than from on board a private boat, with options including a luxury motor cruiser with buffet luncheon on board. Why not try a tasting of rare Society Whiskies on board.

The views from the boat offer a unique view of the impressive Urquhart Castle, dating back to the 13th century. Once it was one of Scotland’s mightiest strongholds – now an atmospheric ruin overlooking the dark waters, home of the loch’s elusive resident.

Following lunch in Fort Augustus head north to Glen Ord Distillery. Situated in the most picturesque of locations on the edge of the Black Isle, enjoy a tour followed by a tasting of one or more of the malt whiskies.

The Glenmoriston Townhouse Hotel is situated in the heart of the city and has a wonderful location on the banks of the River Ness.

Day 6: Loch Ness - Ballater

This morning you can either visit magnificent medieval Cawdor Castle or the battlefields at Culloden. Dating from the late 14th century, Cawdor Castle was built as a private fortress by the Thanes of Cawdor.

The emotive battlefields at Culloden are the site of the infamous battle in 1746, where in less than 60 minutes, the Jacobites of Scotland lost to the armies of the English throne. Following lunch at a local pub you will then visit your choice of Speyside distillery during the afternoon.

Drive on to Ballater and the Daroch Learg Hotel for dinner and overnight. This family run hotel was built in 1888 as a country residence and still retains the ambience and relaxing informality which makes you feel like a house guest in a private mansion.

Day 7: Return to Edinburgh

Travel along the banks of the River Dee, one of Scotland’s prettiest rivers and onto Balmoral Castle. Dating back to 1850 and once the hunting lodge and Highland retreat of Queen Victoria, it is now HM, The Queen’s private Scottish residence.

Adjacent to the Castle is the Royal Lochangar Distillery, which received its Royal Warrant in 1848 following a visit by the neighbouring Prince Albert. Enjoy a tour and tasting of the wonderful 12 YRO malt.

Following a casual lunch you will then drive back to Edinburgh . Settle into your rooms before you depart for The Scotch Malt Whisky Society on Queen Street. You’ll be welcomed by a Whisky Ambassador and shown around the Society and Members’ Room before you enjoy a private 4-course dinner with your host together with 5 rare Society whiskies.

Hotel du Vin
Nestled deep in Edinburgh’s Old Town, is the 4* Hotel du Vin. The property is elegant but relaxed, classic yet quirky. Think quintessential British style without pretension.

Hotel Missoni
Located just off arguably one of the most famous streets in the world, the Royal Mile, is Edinburgh’s newest 5* property, Hotel Missoni. Bold, chic and contemporary.

Day 8: Departure

Breakfast at your hotel this morning. Perhaps you’ll have some time for last minute shopping on George Street before your driver takes you to Edinburgh Airport for your return flight.

Itinerary

Duration Description Overnight
Day 1: Arrival into Edinburgh
Day 2: Edinburgh - East Lothian
Day 3: East Lothian - Loch Lomond - Isle of Eriska
Day 4: Isle of Eriska - Fort William
Day 5: Loch Ness
Day 6: Loch Ness - Ballater
Day 7: Return to Edinburgh
Day 8: Departure

Inclusions

Included

  • Accommodation with daily breakfast
  • Transfers
  • 24 hour emergency contact
  • Activities mentioned in the itinerary
  • English speaking tour guide

Not Included

  • International and domestic airfare
  • Personal expenses
  • Visa fees and/or visa authorization
  • Tips and gratuities
  • Other expenses not mentioned on the itinerary
  • Travel insurance (please note that travel insurance is mandatory for all Lightfoot Travel holidays)

Map

Edinburgh East Lothian Isle of Eriska Fort William Glenmoriston Town House Darroch Learg

From US$ 10,000 per person based on two guests travelling

Notes on our prices

  • This price guide provides you with a broad indication of how much to budget for your holiday.
  • Prices are generally based on two people travelling together (unless stated otherwise) on a shared room basis.
  • Prices can fluctuate depending on season, standard of accommodation, excursions selected (private versus shared) etc.
  • This basic structure works very nicely, but don’t forget that Lightfoot Travel can provide a range of experiences and we tailor-make each itinerary based on your travel requirements. Get in touch to start planning your perfect trip with your own travel consultant.