Blair Athol Distillery, Pitlochry
Situated in Pitlochry, the Perthshire town at the gateway to the Highlands, this distillery produces malt whisky that is added to the famous Bell’s blend, as well as a small selection of single malt bottles.
The tour is engaging and well thought out, with the expert guides capable of answering even the most complex of questions.
If you like your whisky without a trace of peaty, smoky nose and flavour, this is the tour for you.
Glenkinchie Distillery, Tranent
The ‘Edinburgh Malt’, this distillery is within an easy distance of the Scottish capital, and is well worth a visit.
There is an excellent model of the distillery in the visitor centre, and there are a selection of tours to choose from, with a handy shuttle bus from Edinburgh possible, meaning you do not need to worry about designating a driver.
Laphroaig Distillery, Port Ellen, Isle of Islay
A single year older than Lagavulin, the Laphroaig name is the most famous of the Islay whiskies, and consistently sells the most worldwide.
The name itself means ‘The beautiful hollow by the broad bay.’ This distillery also offers a selection of different experiences, ranging from tastings to a four and a half hour ‘water to whisky’ experience.
As a part of the standard tour, the option to take away your wee dram as a miniature if you are driving is a good touch.
Talisker Distillery, Isle of Skye
Moving north to the Isle of Skye, Talisker is now the only distillery to visit on this famous island and the dramatic views of the Cuillin mountains are to be savoured.
In summer this distillery can get very busy, so it is wise to book a tour in advance. The whisky is not as peaty as those from Islay, but is still heavier than those from Speyside, or other Island whiskies.
The standard tour is also available with a ‘bolt on’ whisky flight, for those who cannot spare the time for the full tasting.
The Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, Ballindalloch
Another award winning visitor experience, this Speyside distillery is situated in a remote Cairngorm glen full of history and exciting stories.
A favourite whisky of Charles Dickens, around half of the single malt produced by The Glenlivet distillery is sold to America.
As well as a selection of tours and tastings, the distillery provides details of different local walks in the area, tied in with the smugglers’ history of the whisky.