A 9 day trip to Scotland
Speyside spirits and sixty-foot putts, the incomparable pleasure of birdie and the unmatched delight of an aged single malt, a future that stretches ahead to tomorrow and traditions that reach back to the time of kings: no matter your handicap, this custom-made Scottish vacation is sure to be a hole in one.
Description of your trip
- Begin in Aberdeen, one of the most beautiful cities in Scotland, where granite architecture fills the streets that line one of the country’s most exciting harbors, and where the atmosphere is one of subdued sophistication
- Play the links at the Royal Aberdeen Golf Club, Murcar Gold Club and Cruden Bay Golf Club, all while enjoying the finer points of Scottish food and drink at some of the area’s best restaurants and whisky distilleries
- Head to Elgin in the heart of Speyside, where you’ll enjoy lunch at a cutting-edge restaurant before embarking on the Whisky Trail in high style, visiting some of Scotland’s best and best-known distilleries in the comforts of a limo
- Visit the British Golf Museum the quiet streets and, of course, take in 18 at the Birthplace of Golf at the incomparable Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews
Day 1: Aberdeen (Arrival in the Granite City)
Day 2: Aberdeen (The Royal Aberdeen and the Royal Lochnagar)
Day 3: Aberdeen (A Day at the Links, A Night on the Town)
Day 4: Aberdeen (Golf in a Historic Corner of Scotland)
Day 5: Elgin (Trekking the Whisky Trail)
Day 6: St. Andrews (Starting for St. Andrews)
Day 7: St. Andrews (A Round of a Lifetime)
Day 8: Aberdeen (Departing Bonnie Scotland)
- Architecture / Cultural Activities / Historical Sites / Monument / Memorial / Museums & Galleries / Gourmet Dining / Small Towns / Villages / Train Travel / Walking Tours / Golf / Nature
Dates are flecxible
Day 1: Arrival in the Granite City
Touch down this morning in arresting Aberdeen, the third-largest city in Scotland and a major port and commercial center in the United Kingdom, ready to embark on an exploration of the best parts of the Scottish highlands. You’ll be transferred from the airport to your hotel in the center of this charming metropolis, where you can drop off your bags and explore your environs, from the beautiful gray edifices of the Town House and Marischal College to the beautiful indoor Winter Gardens, one of the largest of its kind in Europe, or walk the streets looking for a place to enjoy Aberdeen’s evening scene: Ma Cameron’s is the oldest pub in the city, and Slain’s Castle is one of the city’s highlights, best known for its potent concoction known as a Seven Deadly Sins cocktail.
Day 2: The Royal Aberdeen and the Royal Lochnagar
Today you begin your discovery of Scottish golf as you head to a true links course that is as challenging as it is breathtaking: the world-renowned Royal Aberdeen Golf Club at Balgownie. The site of the 2011 Walker Cup and the 2005 Senior British Open, this impressive course runs along the North Sea shore in a dramatic and difficult layout, famed for its impeccable layout filled with deep bunkers and rolling fairways and a unique and unsurpassed balance of holes, with the par-three 8th garnering particular acclaim. If you’re not too busy struggling through the notoriously difficult winds at the Scottish coast, take some time to let the incredible landscape settle over you; and even if you go out in 50, you can take solace in the fact that the front nine is widely regarded as one of the finest in golf.
Following a delicious club lunch, you’ll be off to tour the rustic and remarkable Royal Lochnagar Distillery, founded nearly two centuries ago and offering delicious single malts on the shores of the River Dee. Known for their own 12 Year single malt as well as for providing spirits for high-end blended whiskies like Johnnie Walker’s black and blue labels, a tour to Royal Lochnagar is truly a special experience: you’ll be led around the complex by experienced guides as operators prepare the mash, tend to the shimmering copper pot stills and barrel this Highland delicacy. And, of course, no proper trip to a Scotch distillery would be complete without a dram of its famous product – each tour of the distillery ends with a spot of its famous Twelve Year whisky, which is sure to offer the perfect cap to your exciting day.
Day 3: A Day at the Links, A Night on the Town
Grab your bag, screw in your spikes and get ready to go long as you prepare for the magnificent Murcar Links Golf Club, running just along the south side of Royal Aberdeen and offering a course layout that has earned its praise as one of Scotland’s hidden gems. There are holes here reminiscent of some of Murcar’s more famous cousins – the par three fifth echoes the tiny and isolated green at Royal Troon, and some of the back nine appears inspired by the driving difficult of Carnoustie – but there are also peculiarities to Murcar that make it one of the best courses in Scotland, like the great run back home on 18 and the often tricky pin placement on 15, where a mentality of “death or glory” predominates. Following your round, you’ll be returned to your hotel, where you can freshen up and await a gourmet meal at one of the area’s finest restaurants, featuring rich and succulent Scottish meats, fresh produce and a fine lists for whisky and wine.
Day 4: Golf in a Historic Corner of Scotland
Set out this morning to conquer the links at Cruden Bay Golf Club, located just south of famous Slains Castle, where King Malcolm II allegedly defeated the Danes in the eleventh century and which perhaps served as the inspiration for Dracula. The golf club at Cruden Bay has its own share of history: it was designed by the legendary Old Tom Morris in the late nineteenth century, and has served as the host for many Scottish tournaments throughout the year. Rated as being just outside the Top 50 courses in the world by Links Magazine, the course has been named the Top Course in Scotland by the Golf Tourism Scotland Board and the twenty-ninth best in the world by Golf Course Architecture, and the rolling dunes and demanding greens are sure to offer you a challenging and unforgettable look the true heritage of the modern sport. Following your triumphant tour of Cruden Bay, you’ll be taken by first-class train to the quaint and charming town of Elgin, a major stopover in the Speyside area and famed for its production of cashmere wool and fine single malt whiskey. You’ll be taken to your luxurious and opulent five-star hotel, where you can drop off your bags before setting out to explore this charming city that is arguably the buckle of Scotland’s whisky belt.
Day 5: Trekking the Whisky Trail
Following a morning at your leisure – you can visit the beautiful and haunting ruins of the Elgin Cathedral or the imposing facade and towering dome of Dr. Gray’s Hospital – a limousine will pick you up to bring you to an afternoon of fine whisky tasting at some of the Highland’s most famous distilleries. Begin at Glen Grant, started in 1840 by two brothers and now dedicated to churning out single malt whisky at a rate unmatched by almost any other on Earth: long owned by Chivas Brothers and used as a component of their famous blended whisky, Glen Grant is currently the second-largest single malt whisky brand in the world.
The visitor’s center at Glen Grant is sleek and modern, and the accompanying Victorian Gardens are a unique and special touch that adds an unforgettable aspect to any visit. Then turn to arguably the most famous single-malt whisky in the world, the incomparable Glenlivet, whose distillery evokes the incredible history of distillation in Scotland, as well as the stories of the people who made it what it is today. You can enjoy a private tour complete with a tasting of the whisky, stop by the coffee shop for a piece of their world famous whisky cake, or even step into the shoes of the distiller as you fill your own bottle with Glenlivet single malt straight from the cask. Then take a quick digression to the Speyside Cooperage, where the Taylor family has been making barrels used for Scotch for more than three generations, before heading to your final stop at the Strathisla Distillery, the oldest continually operating distillery in the Highlands, where they’ve been producing the elixir of life for more than two hundred years.
The tour takes you on an in-depth exploration of the distillery and a comprehensive explanation of whisky making before giving you the chance to try three of Strathisla’s most popular malts: Chivas Regal 12, Chivas Regal 18, and their Twelve Year single malt.
Day 6: Starting for St. Andrews
A first class train takes you from Elgin into the domains of the ancient Kingdom of Fife and the historic village of St. Andrews, a university town that is home to the oldest center of higher learning in Scotland as well as, of course, the home to the sport of golf. You’ll get to St. Andrews with plenty of time to check in to your perfectly situated hotel, grab a hearty lunch and see the sights: check out the St. Andrews Museum and the campus of the famous University of St. Andrews, visit St. Andrews Castle or simply walk the beaches along the shore of the sea. You’ll definitely want to plan a trip to the British Golf Museum, where you’ll learn about golf’s rich and august history from Medieval times to the present day and get a glimpse at historic equipment and artifacts from the game’s past, like Bobby Jones’s flicker books, Young Tom Morris’s Open Championship Medal, and Seve Ballesteros’s iconic white spikes. There are over 16,000 items of golf culture and history at the museum, from rulebooks to putters to clothing and more, and there is sure to be something for even the most unflappable of golf fans.
Day 7: A Round of a Lifetime
Every day of your golfing life has led to this, a foray onto the hallowed fairways and hated bunkers that is St. Andrews, home to the world’s oldest course, its first and foremost legislative body, and the game’s spiritual birthplace. Depending on your ability and the courses’ availability, you will play one of six notable courses, from the impressive length of the Jubilee Course – built to commemorate Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee in 1897 – to the modern Starthtyrum Course to the venerable and beloved Old Course, filled with more than six centuries of some of the best moments in the history of golf. After a round at incomparable St. Andrews, the event of the evening might pale by comparison, by a final night in spectacular Scotland is sure to provide more than enough inspiration for a memorable occasion.
Day 8: Departing Bonnie Scotland
This morning sees you back in Aberdeen, preparing to return home after your unforgettable weeklong vacation to Scotland. From the best putts and drives and chips to the best food and whisky and scenery, this is sure to be one golf vacation that stays with you long after you sign your scorecard.
Please inquire for a custom quote. The price is customized based on final hotel choices, travel dates, and other custom preferences.