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Overview

Self-Drive Holidays
7 Nights
  • Prices from: £715 per person
  • Availability: Any departure date
  • Best time to go: April - October
  • Transport: Rental car included (optional)

Highlights

Isle of Arran
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Known as “Scotland in Miniature,” Arran has a little bit of everything, boasting steep mountains, glorious beaches, deep glens and shimmering lochs.

Isle of Islay
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Islay is the most southerly island of the Hebrides archipelago and is a wildlife watcher’s dream, with more than 250 recorded species of bird. It has a wild and spectacular coastline and some of the most immaculate and deserted beaches to explore and wander along.

World famous distilleries
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Islay is most famous for its smoky, single malt whiskies. Explore its world-famous distilleries, including Laphroaig, Ardbeg & Lagavulin.

Isle of Mull
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Enjoy the outstanding scenery of the Isle of Mull and its pretty harbour town Tobermory, with multi-coloured houses and the Tobermory Distillery.

Oban
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Known as the hub of the southern Hebrides and the Seafood Capital of Scotland, Oban is home to the 5-star Oban Distillery and Visitor Centre overlooking the sea.

Isle of Iona
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Follow in the footsteps of St Columba and 14 centuries of pilgrims by visiting Iona Abbey on the tiny and tranquil Isle of Iona, steeped in history.

An Amazing Island-Hopping Whisky Tour

A whisky adventure awaits you in the Scottish Islands and on the scenic West Coast. This island-hopping whisky tour blends incredible scenery with wonderful single malt whisky for a truly unforgettable holiday experience which will leave you enchanted with your new favourite dram.

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Explore the natural beauty of the West Coast on this self-drive tour as you island-hop to Arran, Islay and Mull, discovering the secrets of malt whisky-making and enjoying some of Scotland’s finest scenery.

The Isle of Arran is your first stop, and its reputation as “Scotland in Miniature” is well deserved. With deep green glens, tranquil lochs, dramatic mountains, and of course, the Isle of Arran Distillery, it’s hard to know where to start! 

Known as the “Queen of the Hebrides,” the Isle of Islay may only be 25 miles long, but it boasts 8 world-famous distilleries, including old favourites such as Ardbeg, Lagavulin, Bowmore, Caol Ila and Laphroaig.  These smoky, peaty malts are a dream for the experienced whisky fan. 

From your third and final stop at the beautiful seaside town of Oban, you can explore the magical Isles of Mull and Iona, with peaceful harbours, stunning wildlife and – you guessed it – another whisky distillery! The perfect dram might just be waiting somewhere along this Islay & The West Coast Whisky Trail.

Itinerary

This is our suggested itinerary for our Islay & The West Coast Whisky Trail self-drive tour. We design each itinerary around your interests, so think of this as a starting point which can be tailored into something completely unique to you.

We love the opportunity to use our first-hand knowledge and experience to design and deliver the perfect, bespoke holiday experience for you.

Day 1: Arrive Glasgow and travel to the Isle of Arran
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Travel west to catch the ferry to the Isle of Arran. Known as “Scotland in Miniature,” this is Scotland’s most southerly island and boasts dramatic mountains, deep glens and shimmering lochs.
Overnight – Isle of Arran

Day 2: Isle of Arran Sightseeing
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Your whisky tour begins with a visit to the Isle of Arran Distillery, Scotland’s newest distillery and home to The Arran Malt. Sample some of the Island’s other great produce – Arran Cheeses, Creelers Smokehouse and Arran Aromatics. Climb the rugged mountains or play golf on one of the island’s many courses.
Overnight – Isle of Arran

Day 3: Isle of Arran to Islay
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Depart Arran by morning ferry and travel across Kintyre where your next ferry will take you to beautiful Islay. Known for its magnificent beaches and fertile lands, Islay is most famous for its smoky, single malt whiskies.

With eight distilleries all running guided tours, a visit to the island will give you ample opportunity to taste Scotland’s national product. This is traditional whisky making in its full glory – from the malting of the barley, to the peat fired kilns and famous warehouses by the shores of Loch Indaal.
Overnight – Isle of Islay

Day 4: Islay Sightseeing
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Along the south coast of the island you will find the Islay whiskies for the true aficionado – the uncompromising full bodied malts of Ardbeg, Lagavulin and Laphroaig. At Laphroaig Distillery they still cut their peat by hand, and Lagavulin is renowned for its long maturation and complex, rich, peaty character.

Ardbeg is the most peaty malt whisky and is now one of the fastest growing Islay malts. Enjoy a warming dram and delicious lunch in the Old Kiln Cafe, under the old pagoda roofs.
Overnight – Isle of Islay

Day 5: Islay Sightseeing
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Bowmore Distillery has enjoyed a stunning setting on Loch Indaal since 1779 and is widely recognised as one of the finest single malt whiskies in the world. On the northern shores of Islay is Caol Ila Distillery where you see distillers at work tending the six copper stills, and a magnificent view across the Sound of Islay to the spectacular Paps of Jura.

It is a short ferry journey over to Jura, renowned for its magnificently wild landscape and the most remote distillery in Scotland.
Overnight – Isle of Islay

Day 6: Islay to Oban
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Depart Islay and travel along the wonderfully scenic west coast and on to Oban, the beautiful hub of the Southern Hebrides. Visit Oban Distillery before enjoying dinner at an award winning seafood restaurant overlooking the Sound of Kerrera.
Overnight – Oban area

Day 7: Isles of Mull & Iona Sightseeing
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Take a day trip over to the magical Isles of Mull and Iona. Mull is home to magnificent sea cliffs, white sandy beaches and mountains that rise from the crystal clear sea. Famous for its stunning wildlife, you could get acquainted with whales, otters, puffins and basking sharks.

Visit pretty Tobermory, with its multi-coloured houses scattered around a peaceful harbour. Here you will find Tobermory Distillery, home to the sweet and peaty malt of Ledaig and the excellent 10 year old Tobermory.
Overnight – Oban area

 

Day 8 - Oban to Glasgow
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After breakfast it is a wonderfully scenic journey along the bonnie banks of Loch Lomond back to Glasgow.

What's Included?

Your holiday includes:

  • Carefully selected en-suite accommodation for 7 nights including traditional Scottish breakfast
  • Comprehensive information pack and local visitor guidebooks
  • Personalised itinerary with our recommendations for the best places to eat and drink and sightseeing suggestions
  • Map of Scotland with our recommended driving route
  • 8 days rental of an Economy car (other vehicle categories available) including comprehensive insurance
  • All ferry crossings (as per your itinerary)
  • 24-hour emergency contact number
  • Full financial protection

Your holiday doesn't include:

  • Travel insurance
  • Flights
  • Lunches and evening meals

Accommodation & Prices

Special Places to Stay Special Places to Stay
Special Places to Stay Special Places to Stay
Premium Premium
Premium Premium
Standard Standard
Standard Standard
Budget Budget

We know that after a busy day of sightseeing an exceptional place to stay makes all the difference. That’s why all of the accommodation we select is hand-picked using our first-hand knowledge of the best places to stay.

Our discerning team has a wealth of experience, and we extensively research and regularly review all of the accommodation we select for our clients.

Please choose from one of our accommodation categories below. If you wish to combine these categories or perhaps upgrade for a special occasion let us know in your enquiry.

Category
Accommodation type
Price per person
Premium
Boutique Guest Houses and 4* Hotels
From £1045

Our Premium category includes a unique collection of luxurious and stylish boutique Guest Houses and small 4* Hotels. These are wonderfully charming and intimate and run with great flair by their owners.

It also comprises larger 4* Hotels selected for their high standard of accommodation, exceptional service, and great location. These range from traditional luxury to contemporary Hotels.

Standard
4* Guest Houses and 3* Hotels
From £785

A collection of quality 4* Guest Houses and 3* Hotels often located in beautiful locations which provide an excellent standard of accommodation.

Tastefully decorated and furnished, these properties are generally owned and operated by locals who have a genuine passion for their region which they are keen to share with you. Their warm hospitality is sure to be a highlight of your Scottish experience.

Budget
3* B&Bs and Guest Houses
From £715

A collection of 3* B&Bs and Guest Houses offering comfortable accommodation close to local attractions. Your accommodation is great for the little personal touches.

A chat with your warm and friendly hosts and fellow guests over breakfast will arm you with local knowledge and tips for the day ahead.

Special Places to Stay
Exceptional Hotels and luxury Resorts
Please enquire

From award-winning luxury Hotels to unique country retreats, all of which offer exceptional accommodation with superb facilities and outstanding service.

These are truly magical places and amongst the best Scotland has to offer. The perfect choice when you would like somewhere really special which can be a treat for the night or for your entire holiday.

Car Hire

Our packages include car rental and comprehensive insurance for the duration of your holiday. Absolute Escapes has an excellent relationship with a number of car hire operators and we are able to offer quality vehicles and great value for money.

If you plan to bring your own vehicle, we are also able to offer this itinerary without a rental car.

All our packages include:

  • Collision Damage Waiver
  • Super Damage Excess Waiver
  • Third Party Insurance
  • Theft Waiver
  • Tax
Economy
Vauxhall Corsa or similar
  • Good for 2 people
  • Maximum of 4 passengers
  • 2 large suitcases
  • Manual or automatic transmission
Compact
Ford Focus or similar
  • Good for 2 – 4 people
  • Maximum of 5 passengers
  • 2 large suitcases
  • Manual or automatic transmission
Intermediate
Volkswagen Passat or similar
  • Good for up to 4 people
  • Maximum of 5 passengers
  • 3 large suitcases
  • Manual or automatic transmission
Fullsize
VW Sharan or similar
  • Good for 5 people
  • Maximum of 7 passengers
  • 3 – 4 large suitcases
  • Manual or automatic transmission

Make an enquiry

Islay & The West Coast Whisky Trail

Need something more tailored?
Contact us via email:
enquiries@absoluteescapes.com

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