History & Tastes of Scotland
Over the centuries, Scotland was occupied or conquered by numerous peoples. The Celtic-speaking Picts arrived in approximately 200 BC, with the Romans following in 81 AD. The Romans found life in Scotland inhospitable thanks to the stark mountains and moors and the sometimes severe weather. Their forced retreat gave Hadrian an opportunity to build his famous wall in 122 AD, and it was the peaceful Christian missionaries that next made their mark in Scotland over the ensuing centuries. The unifying power of religion brought all of Scotland together, but constant invasions by Vikings, and then William the Conqueror in 1066, made independence supremely difficult. Powerful Scottish clans rose up against the English, building impressive castles that were intended to protect the people and the land. Some of these structures still stand today, a testament to the determination of a brave and ferocious people.
Much of this fascinating history is waiting to be explored in the Scotland of the modern world. The past comes alive at sites like Edinburgh Castle and the Royal Palace of Holyrood House. Visits to sites such as Stirling Castle and Inveraray Castle demonstrate the ingenuity of a people dedicated to protecting their way of life. The glorious countryside is dotted with ancient abbeys and fine old homes that await further exploration.
Of course, there also is an array of whiskey distilleries that call to the novice and connoisseur alike. After spending a few days in Scotland, chances are good that you will fall in love with the national drink and its fascinating history as well as the people who are committed to crafting the finest drink in the land.
If you want to discover more about this mystical place, then the History & Tastes of Scotland tour will fulfill your every desire.
Travel throughout the mystical, ruggedly beautiful country of Scotland, exploring historic castles and sampling an incredible variety of scotch whiskeys on this tour. Over the course of twelve days, we'll visit distilleries from Ben Nevis to Speyside to Ebradour, journey into castles and abbeys of yore, and take ferry rides to the Isle of Mull and across famed Loch Ness. After beginning in the bustling capital of Edinburgh, our trip will take us into the indescribable Highlands, stopping for a couple of days in Oban before continuing on to Inverness. We'll visit a cashmere mill and the Orkney Islands to see neolithic ruins. We'll return to Edinburgh for our last few nights, where you'll be able to choose from wandering the city, a day of golf or pampering yourself. You’ll truly enjoy all the flavors and beauty of Scotland!
Fly into Edinburgh, Scotland
Walking tour of the Old Edinburgh
Afternoon free to rest or wander
Dinner included with first Scotch whiskey sampling
2 Nights city center hotel w/daily breakfast
Day in Edinburgh
Visits of Edinburgh Castle, Royal Palace of Holyrood House, Scottish Parliament & St Giles Cathedral
Afternoon free to wander at leisure OR optional Tasting Tour of Edinburgh
Dinner on own
Edinburgh to Oban
After breakfast head to Stirling Castle for a tour
Whiskey tasting at Glengoyne distillery on the way to Loch Lomond for lunch
Visit Inveraray Castle, then tour the power station inside Ben Cruachan (the “hollow mountain”) then to Oban
Tasting at Oban Distillery then Dinner included
2 Nights in luxury accommodations w/daily breakfast
Oban to Isles of Mull & Iona
Ferry ride to the Isle of Mull, then to Isle of Iona
Visit the Abbey, on the site of former 6th Century Monastery, considered origin of Western Europe Christianity
Visit to Tobermory for lunch & Distillery for tour and tasting
Return to Oban
Dinner on own
Oban to Inverness
After breakfast head off to Inverness
Stop in Fort William for a tasting at the Ben Nevis Distillery
Head to Fort Augustus to start the cruise up Loch Ness
End your travels with Dinner in Inverness before checking into your luxury accommodations
4 Nights in luxury accommodations w/daily breakfast
Speyside distillery tour with possible stops at Glenfiddich, Macallan, Glenlivet & Strathisla (operating since 1786)
Visit Speyside Cooperage to see the barrel making process
OPTIONAL Highlands tour for non-whiskey fans
Dinner on own
Full day tour to Orkney Islands including lunch
Includes visiting sites of Skara Brae and Rings of Brodgar & Stenness
Dinner on own
Tour the Glen Moray distillery with tasting & lunch
Visit a cashmere mill dating back 200 years
Tasting at the smallest distillery in the region – Benromach
Inverness To Edinburgh
After breakfast head south to visit Blair Castle
Then on to the House of Bruar for shopping of Scottish goods and lunch
Next stop at Ebradour Distillery, Scotland’s smallest distillery, for a tasting
Arrive in Edinburgh, Dinner on own
3 Nights in city center hotel w/breakfast
OPTIONS – Golf Day OR Abbottsford Trust Half Day Tour & Half Day Spa
FREE DAY TO ENJOY THE CITY ON OWN
Final Farewell Dinner
Transfer to airport for flight home
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