scotland:

whisky & islands odyssey

9 Nights | Expert Guided Journey of Taste & Discovery

Edinburgh + 8 Distillery tours

Islands of Islay, Jura, Arran, Mull, Staffa

Spectacular Scenery and Wildlife

Scotland – Whisky & islands Odyssey

This guided road trip is a sensory delight – an exhilarating, island-hopping odyssey of taste, travelling through Scotland’s glorious scenery and seascapes. We find heritage and wildlife, island tradition, fine food, and warmth of welcome. We visit some of the most celebrated places of whisky production, learning how each Single Malt is the product of its place, tasting the qualities that are distilled into every dram, finding the beauty of these places on the edge of Europe.

At the heart of our journey is an in-depth encounter with the almost mythical whisky island of Islay.

We visit the Isles of Arran and Mull and travel north to Oban, Scotland’s seafood capital. We follow the sea-route of writers and artists to the Isle of Staffa, on safari with minke whales, dolphins and basking sharks.

Our whisky masterclass will open your tour, and open the door to the delights of this most evocative of spirits. We visit nine distilleries – each a celebrated local maker of Single Malt Scotch Whisky.

At the end of your journey, you have two further nights to enjoy to yourself in the heart of Edinburgh, Scotland’s ancient capital city.

Vacation Package Features

  • 9-Night British Vacation
  • Includes 7 Night Island Journey
  • Plus 2 Nights Edinburgh
  • Guided Coach, maximum 16 persons
  • Transfers with Edinburgh Airport
  • All Entrance Fees
  • Expert Guiding
  • Intimate, Traditional & Quality Hotels
  • Whisky Tasting Masterclass
  • Tours & Tastings at 9 Distilleries
  • 9 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 5 dinners dinners

Whisky Odyssey Guided Tour Highlights

  • Glengoyne – masterclass taste training to wake up your senses
  • Jura – one of the remotest distilleries, for armth of welcome and an island to share with 5,000 red deer
  • Isle of Islay – finding the water source, digging the peat, tasting the quality
  • Oban – Scotland’s seafood capital
  • Fingal’s Cave – landing on the extraordinary Isle of Staffa
  • Basking Shark Safari – in the Sound of Mull
  • Edinburgh – the sites and tastes of Scotland’s ancient capital

Whisky odyssey Guided Tour Itinerary

Durham Cathedral on the River Wear. UNESCO World Heritage Site. Part of Pelago Travel Great British Explorer Tour to the Ancient Kingdom of Northumberland

Day 1. Arrival

You’ll be met at Edinburgh Airport for convenient transfer to your Scottish country house hotel, set in park and farmlands on the edge of Edinburgh. Take a dip in the pool, visit the health club, and relax in preparation for your tour to begin on Saturday morning. Your tour leader will meet you over a welcome drink, then host our first meal together.

Trams and industrial revolution at Beamish the North of England Open Air Museum. Part of Pelago Travel Great British Explorer Tour to the Ancient Kingdom of Northumberland

Day 2. Glengoyne

We travel to the edge of the Scottish Highlands and Glengoyne distillery for a wonderfully immersive day of nosing, swirling and tasting. You’ll have an in-depth tour of the distillery, before being trained to develop your vocabulary of scents. You’ll learn to taste single malts and sherries across a spectrum of samples. Using taste and nose, add and stir, you’ll create your own Single Highland Malt. We travel to the West coast town of Troon, where we overnight.

Hadrian's Wall, UNESCO World Heritage Site. Part of Pelago Travel Great British Explorer Tour to the Ancient Kingdom of Northumberland

Day 3. Kintyre & the Isle of Arran

We take the ferry from Ardrossan to the Isle of Arran for tour and tasting at the island’s independent distillery. We cross to the Kintyre peninsula, visiting the fishing village of Tarbert, with its castle or harbourside. In the early evening our ferry departs on the journey to Islay, the most famous of Scotland’s whisky islands. Arriving in Port Ellen, we check in to our hotel for the next two nights.

Cragside, home of Lord and Lady Armstrong, Northumberland. Part of Pelago Travel Great British Explorer Tour to the Ancient Kingdom of Northumberland

Day 4. Islay - Southern Shore

We visit three world-famous distilleries located on the same quiet country lane.At  Laphroaig we cut the peat – slow decaying vegetation, in the form of turf, from forests that thrived after the last Ice Age. Islay is home to the ‘peatiest’ whiskies, from barley grain exposed to peat smoke during drying. We later visit Ardbeg and Lagavulin distilleries. Along the road we visit Dunyvaig Castle, then find the Kildalton Cross, carved from local stone more than 1200 years ago. Its well-preserved carvings date from the early centuries of Celtic Christianity.

Lindisfarne, Holy Island, Northumberland. Part of Pelago Travel Great British Explorer Tour to the Ancient Kingdom of Northumberland

Day 5. Islay & Jura

To the north of the island and the tiny, independent distillery of Kilchoman, beside its sandy bay. Later we pass the distilleries of Bowmore and Caol Ila and take the five-minute ferry across the Sound of Islay to Jura, where the solitary road takes us to the island’s only hotel, for the warmest of welcomes and more great hospitality. Next door we take a tour and tasting at the Jura distillery, then take the chance to walk in small groups or take the coach together along the coastline. We return to our hotel for dinner, whisky bar and overnight.

Alnwick Castle, Northumberland, home of the Percys, Dukes of Northumberland - and Hogwarts. Part of Pelago Travel Great British Explorer Tour to the Ancient Kingdom of Northumberland

Day 6. Oban & the West Coast

We make the short journey back to Port Askaig on the Isle of Islay, and from the ferry port take the weekly departure, north to Oban on the Scottish mainland. Our ferry briefly docks at the island of Colonsay, before arriving in Scotland’s seafood capital in mid-afternoon. We check in to our hotel, overlooking the harbour and visit the town’s excellent Oban distillery for tour and tasting. The evening is yours to explore the tastes and charms of this gateway town to the northern and western Hebriddean islands.

Day 7. Mull, Staffa & Treshnish Isles

Our chartered boat trip is through the Sound of Mull at the height of the basking shark season – these vast, slow moving, plankton eating fish are an incredible sight. We visit the Treshnish Isles, amidst colonies of puffins, then visit the isle of Staffa, finding the dramatic volcanic scenery of Fingal’s Cave. At picturesque Tobermory we visit Mull’s last disillery, one of the oldest in Scotland. We spend our evening in one of Oban”s excellent seafront restaurants.

Day 8. Loch Lomond

Travelling inland from the West Coast of Scotland, we journey to Edinburgh through beautiful Highland scenery alongside Loch Lomond and through the forests of the Trossachs National Park. Arriving in central Edinburgh around midday, our time together comes to an end as you check into your 4-star hotel, ideally situated for you to enjoy two full days exploring the sights or shopping amidst the charms and beauty of Scotland’s ancient capital city.

Days 9 & 10. Edinburgh

The Old Town and New Town of Edinburgh are both designated as World Heritage Sites. Edinburgh Castle dominates the city skyline from the summit of a long-extinct volcano. The Castle is a wonderful place to visit, alongside Arthur’s Seat, the Holyrood Palace, the National Museum of Scotland, St Giles’ Cathedral or the Royal Botanic Garden. The time is yours to explore. On Sunday your coach transfer will take you from your hotel to Edinburgh airport.

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Scotland - Whiskey & Islands Odyssey

A Great British Explorer Tour™ from Pelago Travel

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