While I was on spring break from my semester abroad in Swansea, Wales, I spent a week with my friend, Laura, in her home country of Scotland.
My friend and college roommate, Brett (of The Sunshine Traveller), and I had taken a trip to Edinburgh, Scotland the year before. Brett introduced me to Laura, who turned out to be a fabulous host and tour guide.
When I visited Laura the second time around, on my own this time, she was equally generous. I had one of the best times touring her neck of the woods, with her in the driver’s seat.
This trip, she decided that I needed to branch out from the comfort zone of Edinburgh. So, we loaded up the boot of her car with a day bag and some snacks and headed on a little road trip. This trip lead to one of my favorite Scottish experiences thus far: the Famous Grouse Experience at Glenturret. To get to the distillery, it is an hour and half drive up into the Highlands, into the county of Perthshire.
It was a chilly, Scottish spring day. Perfect weather for a little whisky. That is…if I drank whisky. Which I don’t. I’ll stick to beer and wine, thank you. But, the distillery was off a quiet road in a tiny town and was nearly deserted. It was the kind of calm I needed after months of straight partying in Swansea. Plus, Laura had taken me on a tour of her favorite pubs and clubs the night before, which lead to too many Jager Bombs, which lead to me throwing up on a cobblestone street behind a church.
Classy, I know. Clearly, I cannot hold my liquor nearly as well as the Scottish can.
We arrived early in the day, so we were the first guests. We took our hour-long tour of the distillery and then were treated to a complimentary glass of whisky. I pretty sure I took a sip. I’m positive I didn’t enjoy it.
Despite not caring for the drink, I had a much-needed peaceful day in the Scottish Highlands and became (slightly) more educated on how whisky is made. (Only slightly more educated because I was a little too hungover to take all the information in. This was certainly not the fault of the tour.)
Glenturret Distillery Fun Facts:
- The distillery is Scotland’s oldest, dating back to 1775.
- From 1920 to 1960, the distillery did not produce a single drop of whisky. Prohibition in the United States followed by World War II forced Glenturret to shut its doors.
- The distillery tour was nominated for an Interactive Entertainment Award at BAFTA.
The Famous Grouse Experience has several different tours including the Experience Tour, the Chocolate Connoisseurs Tour, and the Behind the Scenes Tour.