Explore Scotland: Highlands and Islands

In light of yesterday’s exciting news that Scotland’s Highlands and islands have been named among Lonely Planet’s list of top world destinations to visit in 2019, we thought it seemed like a perfect time to get planning!

If you’re looking forward to visiting Scotland next year, then a trip to a Scotch whisky distillery has got to be on your to-do list, and trust us: nobody knows exploring whisky in Scotland quite like our team here at the Scotch Whisky Experience!

We’ve rounded up some of our top posts from the past year to get you fired up and inspired to go exploring this beautiful country – with a few drams thrown in for good measure, of course!


The view from Caol Ila Distillery (Credit and copyright: Paula Arthur)
The view from Caol Ila Distillery (Credit and copyright: Paula Arthur)

It’s certainly no secret that every member of our team who’s had the chance to visit the ‘whisky isle’ of Islay has fallen head over heels in love with it! Unsurprisingly, this has led to a number of blog posts from the Scotch Whisky Experience staff on exploring the island of Islay, including things to do, where to eat and which distilleries to visit (top tip: all of them.) Take a look at our series of Islay-based blog posts here, from Paula Arthur and Éoin Ó Murchú.


Scapa distillery (credit and copyright: Angela Dineen)
Scapa distillery (credit and copyright: Angela Dineen)

A lesser-visited island, but with its fair share of whisky provenance and certainly just as stunning, is the northern isle of Orkney. Home to the distilleries of Scapa and Highland Park, it’s worth a trip for its incredible scenery, amazing wildlife and of course, very good whisky. Take a look at our blog post by Operations Director Angela, on exploring the island of Orkney here.

Speyside and the Highlands

Glen Moray Distillery (Credit: Glen Moray)
Glen Moray Distillery (Credit: Glen Moray)

If you’ve followed us for a while, you’ll remember that we recently published a series of  posts that now rank among our most visited of 2018 so far: exploring Scotland’s distilleries by train. Featuring a handy map and train details from Edinburgh, Glasgow and Inverness (and the whisky distilleries you can reach from each station), this series is the guide you need if you’re exploring Scotland without a car. Find visitor team member Harry Brennan’s posts below:

Distilleries you can visit from Edinburgh
Distilleries you can visit from Glasgow
Distilleries you can visit from Inverness


Ferry view
The view from the ferry from Lochranza to Claonaig (credit and copyright: Jim Allan)

We’re including the hard-to-reach peninsula of Kintyre in this round-up, because visiting the whisky hamlet of Campbeltown is a must-do on the bucket list of any intrepid whisky fan: it even starts with a long, winding drive through the lower edges of the beautiful Highlands. Fancy making the trip? Read Visitor Experience Manager Jim Allan’s piece on taking a trip to Campbeltown here.

Why not follow the Scotch Whisky Experience blog to stay up to date with our latest posts? Our team write about everything from what to do in Edinburgh, distillery visits and where to go in Scotland, right through to whisky tastings and pairings.

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