Spirit of Speyside
Whether you are a whisky connoisseur or just curious about what makes malt whisky so special, the Spirit of Speyside Festival in May is an event not to be missed. Taking place in ‘Malt Whisky Country’, a number of events are held in the Speyside region where the highest concentration of distilleries in Scotland can be found on the banks of the River Spey. Over the long weekend, join special distillery tours, visit pretty towns, enjoy drams at energetic ceilidhs and explore the great outdoors.
Fèis Ìle - The Islay Festival of Malt and Music
Another May-time festival, Fèis Ìle was founded by locals on the Isle of Islay in 1986 to celebrate the heritage and culture of the Inner Hebridean Island which boasts eight malt whisky distilleries. This week-long event starts of the last weekend of May each year and is a great way to discover the peaty, amber delights from the distilleries of Islay and neighbouring Isle of Jura. Each distillery holds its own open day, where you’ll find special events, and the week is full of traditional music, ceilidhs, children’s shows, guided walks and outdoor activities.
Spirit of Stirling Whisky Festival
Set in Stirling’s historic Albert Hall, this one-day event in May has been greatly received by whisky fans, with the biggest names in whisky appearing, such as Macallan, Highland Park, Bowmore, Ardbeg, and many others. As well as over 250 whiskies available for tasting on the day, the Spirit of Stirling features a high quality food court showcasing tasty treats and artisan produce from Stirling’s local food producers.
Orkney Whisky’s Wild Side
As part of the Orkney Nature Festival in 2014, the Orkney Whisky’s Wild Side is a fusion of wild and cultural events celebrating the roots of Orkney’s whisky. Over eight days in May, explore the island’s diverse whisky-producing landscape through walks, talks, tours, demonstrations, concerts, markets and workshops.
Inverness Whisky Festival
Taking place in the unique setting of a rustic 19th century farm building is the Inverness Whisky Festival. Since 2011, this two-day festival at Bogbain Farm, three miles south of Inverness, has been hailed a success, winning events and traditional music awards. Held in April, you’ll not only be able to experience some of Scotland’s finest malt whiskies at this event but also, in the words of the organizers, ‘absorb the culture that goes hand in hand with Scotland's national drink: the music, the food, the history, the craic.’
World Whisky Day
World Whisky Day is a worldwide celebration of Scotland’s national drink. With the next taking place on 17 May 2014, pubs, bars, restaurants and distilleries across the country and beyond will be holding various events themed around whisky.