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Islay and the Whisky Coast

Discover the smoky flavors of Islay's single malt whiskies, explore the historic sights of Islay, and spend your time trading notes with fellow whisky lovers.

Islay and the Whisky Coast

Discover the smoky flavors of Islay's single malt whiskies, explore the historic sights of Islay, and spend your time trading notes with fellow whisky lovers.

Tour Highlights

  • Savour the distilled essence of Scotland’s fine landscapes and exquisite whisky on this delectable tour.
  • Sightseeing includes Oban, Kilmartin Glen, Bowmore, The Islay Single Malt Whiskies, sandy beaches of Islay, Inveraray, and Loch Lomond National Park.
  • Small groups up to 16 passengers.

    (*maximum of 8 participants can be booked on any one departure with Celtic Tours. If more than 8, the tour must be private and the price will be affected).
 

Islay and the Whiskey Coast Tour Includes

  • Five (5) nights accommodations; two (2) nights in Edinburgh (pre/post) at pre-booked mid-ranged 3-4 * hotel in Edinburgh City. To be advised at time of booking.
  • Three (3) nights at the Bowmore Distillery Cottages.*
  • Breakfast daily (except for morning of arrival, continental self-serve at the Bowmore Cottages).
  • Arrival and departure transfers in Edinburgh.
  • Four (4) days of custom touring.
  • Ferry Service to and from Islay
  • New starting April 2023 - Tour and tastings included at Ardbeg Distillery, Ardnahoe Distillery, Bowmore Distillery, Laphroaig Distillery*
  • All service charges and hotel taxes.

    *Itinerary and Distillery tours and tastings subject to change. Additional admissions may not be included. No refunds will be made if passenger decides not to participate in Distillery Tour & Tastings.

Additional Note

*Part of this tour has a number of rooms in the beautiful Bowmore Distillery Cottages. These are self-catering cottages in the grounds of the distillery itself and offer a unique accommodation experience. The cottages have between 3 and 6 bedrooms and these are all en-suite but are NOT serviced during your stay. The kitchen and lounge facilities are shared and self-service continental breakfast ingredients will be provided. PLEASE NOTE THAT DUE TO THE SHARED NATURE OF THE ACCOMMODATION INDIVIDUAL BEDROOMS DO NOT HAVE LOCKABLE DOORS. When these rooms are full we will use nearby B&Bs.

Please Note Baggage Restriction: Due to size of coach there is a luggage restriction of 14kg (31 Ibs) of luggage per person on this tour. This includes one piece of luggage similar to an airline carry-on bag (approximately 22in x 17in x 10in) and a small personal bag.

A maximum of 8 passengers per departure date can be booked on this tour due to limitations of the coach size. If you have a larger party and/or wish to have a group booked on this tour, please contact us directly, as it will have to be quoted as a private group and rates here do not apply.


Itinerary

Day 1 | Edinburgh

Arrive Edinburgh. Transfer to your hotel is included. You are free to enjoy this beautiful city on your own. (Please note: hotel check-in is generally between 2 pm and 4 pm. If you are arriving into Edinburgh early - the hotel will be happy to hold your luggage until your room is ready).

Day 2 | Islay

Make your way to the Edinburgh Bus Station, St Andrew Square, Edinburgh for 8:15 am (If you booked a departure point transfer at time of booking, your driver will collect you as noted on your voucher). You escape the city of Edinburgh and head straight for the Highlands. Your first stop of the day is in the Trossachs national park. Here, you can admire Scotland’s scenic beauty and enjoy some local delicacies. Your driver-guide may regale you with tales from Scottish folklore as you travel through the mountainous landscapes of the Western Highlands to Oban. This port town was once the strategic heartland of great feuding clans. But today, Oban is famous for seafood sourced fresh off the boats. It also boasts its own distillery where you can sample whisky that’s been perfected for 200 years. Here, you will have time to enjoy a dram and indulge in delicious local seafood for lunch. You then venture through the Kilmartin Glen where you see standing stones and strongholds that are over 1,500 years old. At Kennacraig, you catch the evening ferry to Islay. The sail is around two hours; and if you peek out to the ocean, you may see the Paps of Jura. These mountains mark the way to Islay, Queen of the Hebrides. Once you’ve arrived on the island, you settle into your accommodation in Bowmore.

Day 3 | A full day exploring Islay

We know whisky tasting can be hard work, so you begin the day with a little sleep in. After you’ve had an ample amount of breakfast, you enjoy a tour of Bowmore Distillery, one of the oldest distilleries in Scotland. You have time for a tour and a whisky tasting here before you continue exploring the island. Next, your driver-guide takes you to Kilchoman Distillery for a tour and a lunch of local treats. Kilchoman is known as Islay's only Single Farm Single Match Scotch Whisky, reviving traditional farm distilling of barley to bottle, making their whisky 100% Islay. On Friday and Saturday, you visit Bruichladdich, the progressive distillery specialising in unpeated whisky. On Tuesday, you taste the unpeated and salty notes of Bunnahabhain in the most remote distillery on Islay. You head back to Bowmore where you can either stumble back to your room for the night or relax and explore the village.

Day 4 | Another day in paradise!

Today you explore the southern side of the island, home to a few of the most famous whiskies in all of Scotland: Laphroaig, Lagavulin, and Ardbeg. After you’ve made it out of bed and eaten your breakfast, you visit Ardbeg. You stay here for a tour, tasting, and lunch. The restaurant here is a beautiful place to relax and enjoy fine Scottish produce as you sip upon delightful drams. You then visit Laphroaig. This 200-year-old whisky distiller is a favourite with the British royal family and bears the seal of the Prince of Wales to prove it. Throughout the day, your driver-guide takes you to historical spots such as the ruins of Kildalton church and Dunyvaig Castle. And you can also stop at Lagavulin for some intensively flavoured, rich and smoky whisky. You return to Bowmore for your last evening of the trip.

Day 5 | Edinburgh

This morning, you take the ferry back to the mainland and replace the intoxicating fumes of whisky with the replenishing fresh air of Scotland’s West Highlands. You travel through coastal scenery to the beautiful village of Inveraray on the banks of Loch Fyne. The town is adorned with historic buildings, old boats, and a great whisky shop. Your trip continues to Loch Lomond where you have a chance to admire Great Britain’s largest body of water by surface area. You arrive in Edinburgh in the early evening.

Day 6 | Edinburgh - Home

After breakfast, transfer from your hotel to the Airport for your return flight to the US.

*Itinerary and distillery visits are subject to change.

Rates & Hotels

2024 Dates & Prices (Click Date to Book) 2024 Dates & Prices (Click Date to Book)
Dates Land Only Land Only
  $2639
  $2639
  $2639
  $2639
  $2389
  $2539
  $2539
  $2539
  $2469
  $2469
  $2469
  $2469
  $2469
  $2469
  $2469
  $2469

Featured Hotels

Islay and the Whisky Coast- 3 Nights at Bowmore Cottages, plus 2 nights Edinburgh Hotel (pre/post)
Bowmore Cottages Bowmore, Isle of Islay, Argyll
Celtic Tours - Pre and Post UK Hotel

Tour Details

Your land package begins: / Your land package ends:

(As most International flights are overnight flights - please book air accordingly)

Flight Details


Accommodation Details

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    Requests are not guaranteed and are subject to each hotel's discretion and availability

Bowmore Distillery Cottages

Bowmore, Isle of Islay, Argyll -

A stay with us at Bowmore Distillery Cottages offers the chance to reflect on the heritage of these ancient practices in beautifully renovated cottages, located at the centre of a charming village on a beautiful Hebridean island. [more]

UK Hotel

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Pre and post nights booked at a mid-level hotel [more]

Pricing

Your tour land price is per person based on two (2) people sharing a twin or double room. When a single room is booked, a single supplement will apply. There are no triple rooms for this tour. Price may fluctuate end of July and end of August due to seasonal overlap.

Children under 18 years are not allowed on this tour.

This tour does not include:

  • Items not noted on itinerary
  • Lunches
  • Dinners
  • Tips to driver/guide
  • Optional Admissions not listed or as determined by itinerary changes and/or group interests

Airfare

Airfare can be booked in conjunction with this tour. Airfare is instant purchase and non-refundable. 

Departures & Transfers

Departure date is the date the tour starts in Edinburgh. Please book your air one day before to accommodate overnight flights.

Sunday departures offer the chance to see more whiskey production as all the distilleries are in operation on weekdays. We recommend the Sunday departures as the best choice for real enthusiasts and we try to fit in additional tastings where possible.

Tour Guarantee

Although our UK tours are guaranteed with a minimum of 2 passengers, it does not mean a date is guaranteed until we check with the Edinburgh office. Although we get regular updates, a tour can sell out and we may not yet have it noted above. We must first advise of a guarantee before airfare is booked and ticketed. Thank you.