We love a good whisky festival here in Scotland. It’s no wonder – after all, the term ‘whisky’ comes from the Gaelic uisge beatha, which translates as the ‘water of life’. And anything called the ‘water of life’ must be worthy of a bit of a celebration, surely?
We’ve put together a list of great Scottish whisky festivals and events from all across the country. They are the perfect place to sample whiskies from different regions. Who knows – you might even find your favourite dram!
Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival
27 April – 2 May 2022, various locations across Moray Speyside
Regarded as Scotland’s whisky country, Speyside provides the perfect setting for the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival and allows visitors from across the globe to get behind the scenes at distilleries, excite their palates at tutored tastings and enjoy ceilidhs, music and more.
World Whisky Day
21 May, various locations
Raise a glass to Scotland’s national drink on World Whisky Day. All you need is a bottle of whisky and some friends. Though you could opt to attend an associated whisky-themed event, such as the combined history tour with whisky tasting by Mercat Tours held in Edinburgh’s ancient Blair Street underground vaults. Or why not head to your favourite whisky bar or plan a visit to a distillery?
Fèis Ìle – The Islay Festival of Music and Malt
27 May – 4 June 2022, Isle of Islay
Set sail (or fly) to the enchanting Isle of Islay, Scotland’s whisky island, for Fèis Ìle. Expect a warm Hebridean welcome and great craic as you explore the distilleries and sample whiskies with the island’s famous peaty flavours. The festival also offers a taste of the unique island culture of Islay, with the programme featuring Gaelic and traditional music, ceilidhs, as well as events covering golf, history, natural heritage and more.
Edinburgh Whisky Festival
19 June 2022, Edinburgh
The Assembly Rooms in Edinburgh is where you can find the Edinburgh Whisky Festival, a one-day event which will delight whisky fans. Included in the price of your ticket is the sampling of whisky from all of the exhibitors. There are also some rare and more exclusive whiskies available to purchase, or you can educate your senses at whisky masterclasses.
Spirit of Speyside: Distilled
2 – 3 September 2022, Elgin, Moray Speyside
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You might be familiar with the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival held each spring, but whisky is something to savour all year round! Brought to you by the organisers of the Spirit of Speyside Festival, Distilled takes place in Elgin Town Hall and whisky distillers will be in great company, as they are joined by brewers, gin crafters, food producers and more. Why not stay over for a few nights before or after and explore the region and Scotland’s Malt Whisky Trail?
15 October 2022, Moray Speyside
Now this is an event with a difference – Dramathon is a marathon distance race where whisky is very much the motivation! Running part of the Speyside Way from Glenfarclas Distillery to Glenfiddich Distillery, you can race distances of a full marathon, a half-marathon, a 10K or a relay race. Along the way, get stamped as you pass distilleries to collect whisky miniatures at the finish line. It won’t just be the whisky that will warm you up!
The Dornoch Whisky Festival
28 – 30 October 2022, Dornoch
Operating since 2015, the Dornoch Whisky Festival showcases the best Scottish whiskies, alongside the finest Highland food and hospitality right in the heart of the North Highlands. Festival venues include the Dornoch Castle Hotel, famed for its award-winning whisky bar. Come for a dram or two and leave with new friends and wonderful memories of the festival and this stunning part of Scotland.
Glasgow Whisky Festival
12 November 2022, Hampden Park, Glasgow
This festival brings Scotland’s national drink to the country’s national stadium. Whisky lovers flock to the Glasgow Whisky Festival at Hampden Park to sample and savour a wide range of great whiskies. This festival also showcases the distilleries which are closest to Glasgow along with the city’s independent bottlers.
There are lots of other whisky events taking place throughout the year, including tastings and food pairings – why not find a whisky event taking place when you visit? Or, find a distillery and take a tour.
Fife Whisky Festival
3 – 5 March 2023, Cupar, Fife
The Fife Whisky Festival will take place in 2023 and showcase the finest whiskies from the Kingdom of Fife and beyond. Exhibitors offer a huge range of whiskies to try as well as tasting samples and the live entertainment programme is also a big feature.
For information on local distilleries, check out our Scottish Whisky Distilleries Guide!
Clackmannanshire’s Whisky Festival
1 – 2 April 2023, Alloa Town Hall, Clackmannanshire
Focusing on whisky, heritage and wellness, Clackmannanshire’s Whisky Festival celebrates the rich history of whisky production in the area. Working with mental health charity partners, the festival will be packed full of exhibitors and exclusive masterclasses.