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One month until Whisky Festival returns to Speyside

Internationally renowned Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival is preparing for its return to the region this year from 26th April to 1st May. This annual celebration of Scotland’s national drink has become one of the largest events of its kind anywhere in the world, bringing thousands of visitors to Speyside each year since its creation in 1999.

From distilleries to village halls, to local whisky bars, historic castles and the great outdoors, a range of events will take place throughout the scenic region of Speyside – the biggest whisky producing region in Scotland – with this year’s event seeing record demand after tickets opened for sale in January.

With coveted exclusive experiences on offer, many of the festival’s top events sold out within the first days on sale, with exclusive events like Distiller’s tours with Speyburn, Craigellachie and Tamdhu some of the first to go. Those who have yet to book need not worry, as distilleries have responded to high demand by adding new time slots to events like ‘Build your own Whisky Cask’ with Murray McDavid's Cooper, and extra dates added for the popular Spirit of Speyside Whisky Awards Tasting & Judging with Glenfiddich hosting at The Malt Barn.

Supported by Speyside businesses, communities, members, and locals, it is this master blend of talent from the iconic whisky making region that makes the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival each year. Platinum partners include EventScotland as well as some of whisky’s most distinguished brands like Strathisla, Macallan, Aultmore, and Speyburn.

With over 500 events planned for April’s Festival, other highlights with remaining availability include:

  • Drams Under the Stars: Put on your sturdy boots, some extra layers, and a warm coat for an unforgettable whisky night under the stars with the Murray McDavid Team. Hidden away up in the remote Speyside hills, the Old Bothy was once infamous for illicit whisky making. The site makes for an enchanting place to enjoy some hearty drams with fellow whisky lovers and friends. Sit around a bonfire stargazing under the night sky and join in with music, singing and storytelling into the early hours.
  • The Archives, Glenlivet Distillery: Explore the art of maturation with an exclusive tour of Warehouse 3 at The Glenlivet to delve into the finely tuned processes of cask selection. In a private tasting room, you'll enjoy a tasting of The Glenlivet's oldest and rarest whiskies including a dram straight from the cask, The Glenlivet 30-Year-Old Cellar Collection and a dram from our archives.
  • Trail Run & Paddleboard: Run 8 miles through whisky country, past world famous distilleries and finish at Tamdhu distillery to enjoy a freshly prepared picnic lunch. After lunch, an experienced river guide will support your descent down The River Spey on a paddleboard back to Aberlour to enjoy a celebratory dram or two!
  • Golf and Whisky with Glenfarclas: An exclusive opportunity to play 18 holes of golf at the Elgin Golf Club Championship Course with Glenfarclas manager Callum Fraser, or if you are a beginner, receive golf tuition by our PGA golf professional before enjoying a tasting in the clubhouse before a two-course meal provided by Hardhillock Bar and Bistro.
  • Cardhu Flavour Journey with Charcuterie: Join us on a journey through Cardhu's founding by two generations of resolute women. A full-sensory, field-to-glass tour culminates in Cardhu’s Tasting Kitchen where you will enjoy a tutored tasting of 3 drams paired with samples of locally sourced charcuterie items and a highball cocktail.

George McNeil, Chairman of The Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival, said: “With just four weeks to go, the whole region is buzzing with anticipation to welcome back visitors to Speyside, from as close as the highlands or as far as Singapore or Australia.

“Demand this year has been as we’ve never seen it before, it’s incredible to witness the excitement from whisky experts and novices alike to engage with the history and heritage of Scotland’s favourite spirit that has brought so much life to the region.”

Paul Bush OBE, Director of Events for EventScotland, said: “With just one month to go until Spirit of Speyside, it’s almost time to sample the offerings from one of Scotland’s most famous whisky regions. Both international and more local visitors will once again be treated to a packed programme of tastings, ceilidh’s, distillery tours and more.

“We are delighted to support such a uniquely Scottish event like Spirit of Speyside through our International Events Funding Programme and this celebration of our national drink reinforces Scotland’s position as the perfect stage for events.”

Remaining tickets will be available through until the end of the festival on 1st May 2023.

For more information, visit https://www.spiritofspeyside.com

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