When our longtime friend Brian Oh reached out to tell us about his upcoming scotch/hiking tour of Scotland, our first thought was: can we come?? Quickly followed by: take pictures! And he did just that.
If you’re here for breathtaking landscapes, tantalizing single malt, and some very cute sheep, you’ve come to the right place.
Scotland is a country that appeals to a very specific kind of traveler.
It's a country that has few things in abundance outside of the major hubs of Edinburgh and Glasgow: scotch, nature, and history (and sheep). If even one of those things is of interest to you, Scotland is a roadtripper's dream.
As a scotch enthusiast and an avid hiker, it wasn't difficult to plot out a dream itinerary spanning a few weeks in October and November. The Isle of Skye is a paradise of dramatic rock spires and cliffside walks. Glencoe is a seemingly endless expanse of hills and munros hiding tales of bloody battles. Castle ruins dot the countryside offering glimpses into the past. And ubiquitous throughout are distilleries dating more than a century back.
My own route took me through the tiny port town of Campbeltown, where one of Scotland's most prized distilleries lies, then a stormy ferry ride off the coast to the western isle of Islay where the fiery smoke of many of the famed peaty distilleries weather waves along the coast, and finally up and over to the cradle of single malt whisky in the world, Speyside.
My route took me through small towns, pub nights with locals, and long stretches of unbroken country with more sheep than people. It was a trip with a laser focus on quiet, centuries old craft, and delicious whisky that made me wish I could spend months roaming the Scottish countryside. And I'm still plotting out how to make that happen.