From destinations that are hardly out of town to those nestled in the countryside—and another on an island in the Firth of Clyde!—Glasgow has all kinds of options when it comes to day trips focusing on Scotland’s national drink.
You can hop on a bus from the city and get to Glengoyne—a distillery that offers a whole range of tours—in less than an hour; or opt for Tullibardine, a bit farther but offering a 20-year-old that is hard to find elsewhere. Whichever destination you opt for, get ready for an out-of-body, memorable (and alcohol-infused) experience.
Whisky distilleries near Glasgow
This distillery sits on the banks of the River Teith less than 35 miles from central Glasgow; the nearest train station is Dunblane. It has only been in operation since 1967 although the building is an 18th century cotton mill, enhancing the mystique. At the end of your tour you get to sample the multiple award-winning 12-year-old, making the basic entry price a definite bargain.
Near Doune, Perthshire FK16 6AG, 01786 843010, deanstonmalt.com
Although this distillery feels like it’s in Glasgow, it’s actually over the county line in West Dunbartonshire but still only 10 miles from the city centre; Kilpatrick is the nearest train station. Popular and much-visited thanks to its handy location, the distillery has visitor tours down to a fine art with various levels – and entry prices – catering to everyone from the casual walk-in to the total whisky geek.
Dalmuir, by Clydebank G81 4SJ, 01389 878561, auchentoshan.com
Barely 15 miles north of Glasgow city centre, Glengoyne is an undeniably attractive distillery with its whitewashed walls and its situation in hilly, verdant countryside. Like Auchentoshan it offers a range of tours from the basic to the masterclass, satisfying all-comers – the whole package makes a visit here virtually irresistible. If you don’t want to drive, there is a bus from Glasgow that takes around an hour.
Dumgoyne, near Killearn G63 9LB, 01360 550254, glengoyne.com
This distillery sits between Stirling and Perth, a drive of around 40 miles from central Glasgow; the nearest train station is Gleneagles. The guides who run the distillery tours are great at engaging with visitors and its position by the A9 makes it good for an impulse stop. Should you ever get a chance to taste the 20-year-old, don’t say no.
Blackford, Perthshire PH4 1QG, 01764 661800, tullibardine.com
Certainly one for the adventurous, the best route is via Ardrossan in North Ayrshire where the ferry leaves for Brodick on the island, taking nearly an hour; it’s then 14 miles to the distillery. As a day trip, it’s fantastic: you can get from central Glasgow to Lochranza in around three hours via train, ferry and bus seeing countryside, mountains and the Firth of Clyde en route. The whisky tour almost counts as a bonus.
Lochranza, Isle of Arran KA27 8HJ, 01770 830264, arranwhisky.com