It’s time to experience Scotland like a local. Are you ready?
We’ll begin our tour of Scotland at its heart, in the beautiful capital city of Edinburgh; where the group will assemble at a central meeting point. Once everyone has arrived and has been introduced, we’ll take you through the diverse itinerary for the week. We hope you’re all in high spirits, because the first stop will be an absolute highlight for everyone.
From Edinburgh we’ll take a short drive to Kingsfield Golf Course, where our guide Ronnie and his expert team will provide us with an unforgettable golfing experience. If you’re new to golf, don’t worry, this experience can be catered to all levels, from beginners to the Tiger Woods’ of the world. Known as the ‘Cradle of Golf’, Scotland has attracted thousands of enthusiasts each and every year, and now it’s your turn to experience the majesty of the game first-hand.
Once we’ve worked up an appetite, Ronnie will accompany us to the idyllic Champany Inn for a well-earned steak lunch. Scotland is known well beyond its borders for its high-quality beef, but you can also choose from a wide range of other tasty options if meat isn’t your thing. We’ll also be taking a tour of the famous Champany wine cellar, where we’ll have the opportunity to try a tipple from their extensive stock.
Our accommodation for the next few nights is the historic Gibliston Mill in Fife, home to our host, accomplished food lover and nutritionist, Jane Lorimer. Jane has converted secluded Georgian stables into a gorgeous country home, surrounded by unspoilt Scottish countryside. The perfect quintessential setting for our first night’s sleep in Scotland
Today, our local guide Jane will accompany us to the traditional Scottish farm shop at Ardross Farm, where you’ll be able to learn about the fresh seasonal ingredients that are native to Scotland. The award-winning farm shop enjoys stunning views over the Firth of Forth, so the visit won’t go without absolutely stunning photo opportunities. Enjoy the colours, tastes and smells of Scotland as you work with Jane to select locally grown ingredients to create an incredibly fresh and traditional meal of your own. Take your time to rediscover the enjoyment of food shopping in a calm and serene environment.
We will then head to Anster Cheese Farm for another luxurious ‘farm to plate’ experience. From the viewing gallery you’ll learn all about the famously traditional Scottish methods of cheese production, and witness the cheese being made live, an experience that very few actually see! Gaze out over rolling Scottish countryside towards the sea as you sample some of the award-winning Anster cheese on offer.
With our bags full of fresh local produce, we head back to the charming Gibliston Mill where Jane will demonstrate the skills needed for us to prepare our lunch. You couldn’t ask for a more local experience, especially if you’re a foodie!
After lunch, we’ll head to Kellie Castle for a private tour of the grounds and the castle itself. Built in the 14th century, Kellie Castle is a ‘must see’ for history buffs, nature lovers and architecture enthusiasts alike. On our private tour, you’ll learn all about the history, traditions and legends surrounding the castle and, if the rumours are to be believed, you might even bump into one of the two spirits that haunt the castle corridors.
Day 3 on our Highlands, Games & Whisky trip kicks off with a traditional Scottish breakfast of Puddledub’s famous black pudding, traditional Scottish haggis, bacon and other classic treats that will set you up for the day ahead.
First, we’ll head to Pitlochry, a gorgeous Victorian town set in the highlands of Perthshire. Known for its high street full of cafes and craft shops, and the famous Salmon Ladder at Pitlochry Dam, the town is also home to one of the most famous viewpoints in Scotland, set high above Loch Tunnel. Pitlochry is a wondrous hidden gem of Scotland that few get the opportunity to explore.
Next, we’ll visit the Highland Folk Museum, Britain’s first open air museum, in Newtonmore. You might recognise it as one of the filming locations for the hugely successful TV series ‘Outlander’. Join us as we discover how the real Highlanders lived and learn about their crafts and traditions from skilled historians.
The next stop on our tour is one of our absolute favourites! We’ll head to Leault Farm where, amidst some of the most beautiful scenery in Scotland, you’ll get to experience a working sheepdog demonstration. Local shepherd and dog trainer, Neil, will show you how these incredible dogs are trained and how they keep their flock of sheep in check. You’ll have the chance to meet the wee Collie pups, feed the orphan lambs and see sheep shearers in action. It really doesn’t get more Scottish than this!
Our accommodation for the evening is The Garth Hotel, a charming country Inn built in the 1850’s. Relax by the cosy log fire in the lounge or unwind in the hotel bar with a selection of up to 60 malt whiskies to choose from.
Today you’re in for a treat as we pay a visit to the only working cooperage in the UK; Speyside Cooperage. Discover an integral part of the whisky industry: the ancient art of making whisky barrels and casks. On this unique tour, you’ll be able to watch the coopers at work, try coopering for yourself or simply relax and enjoy the extensive gift and coffee shop available.
It’s time to lace up your walking shoes, because next we’ll be exploring the great Scottish outdoors with our experienced guide, Ian. Ian is a Scottish outdoor adventure specialist and is the proud author of six books covering the historic folklore of the Cairngorms. There is something truly magical about experiencing Scotland with him as you wander through the rolling countryside of the Highlands.
We’ll say goodbye to Ian before journeying to Aboyne, where we’ll be spending the night at the luxurious Lodge on the Loch. Nestled on the banks of the Loch of Aboyne, The Lodge offers spectacular views out towards Mount Keen and Mount Lochnagar. Sit back and relax in a loch-side hot tub and enjoy a spectacular meal at the Osprey Restaurant with panoramic views over the Cairngorms. It doesn’t get much better than this!
Day 5 puts the games in our Highlands, Games & Whisky trip! Today you get to experience a real Scottish tradition at one of the most famous Highland games in the world, the Braemar Gathering. As iconic as haggis, kilts and bagpipes are to Scotland, the Highland Games are the absolute epitome of our culture and is a must see when visiting Scotland. You’ll get to spend the whole day enjoying the unique sporting and athletic events, including Tossing the Caber, Hammer Throw, Tug O’ War and other spectacular performances.
The highlight of the day is the visit of Queen Elizabeth II, who makes a personal visit from Balmoral every year; providing onlookers with a rare and truly unforgettable experience.
Afterwards, we’ll head back to the Lodge on the Loch for a well-earned rest after a full day of fun, laughter and unique Scottish sports!
Make sure you have your cameras at the ready, because today you’ll be spoilt for unbelievable scenery. We’ll start the day by journeying along the East Coast towards Dunnottar Castle, where you’ll be accompanied by some stunning views across the North Sea.
Dunnottar Castle is an evocative ruined cliff-top fortress, attracting visitors from all over the world due to its historic significance and unimaginably scenic location. Known as an unbreachable fortress, Dunnottar Castle holds many secrets of Scotland’s fascinating past. Prepare to be wowed as, once seen, this castle is not easily forgotten.
For those of you who are interested, we can make a pit stop in St. Andrews on our way back to Edinburgh. St. Andrews is well known for its iconic golf courses, its gorgeous architecture and of course, for the leading University where the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, William and Kate, first met.
We’ll make a necessary photo stop at the Firth of Forth before reaching our accommodation for the evening. From our exclusive viewpoint, we’ll enjoy ultimate views across the Three Forth Bridges into the Kingdom of Fife.
We hope you’ve enjoyed experiencing Scotland as much as we’ve loved sharing it with you. As our tour comes to an end, depending on your preferences, you can choose to extend your stay in Scotland or fly home directly. Whichever option you choose, we’ll arrange transportation to the airport or to your chosen hotel.
We know that Scotland will capture your hearts as it has ours, and we hope to see you again soon. So, from everyone at TRIPorganiser, we say “cheerio the nou!”.
Have you always wanted to discover the real Scotland, away from the crowds? Then join us on an unforgettable journey with our Highlands, Games & Whisky Trip to the beating heart of Scotland. Meet real Scots, hear some incredible stories, immerse yourself in thousands of years’ worth of culture, indulge in local delicacies, and enjoy the great Scottish outdoors on our incredible tour that is unlike any other.