Trek Notes - Scotland

The Speyside Way

General Information
The Speyside Way follows Scotland’s loveliest river from the Moray Firth to the foothills of the Cairngorm Mountains through the heart of malt whisky country. Following paths and disused railway trackbeds the trail passes through a beguiling mix of scenery: the wave-battered shores of the Moray Firth, rich farmland, mixed woodland, heather-clad hills and ancient Caledonian pine forests. Along the way it visits many attractive villages and small towns as well as sites of historical interest including stone circles, standing stones, pictish relics, imposing castles and ancient kirks. This beautiful corner of Scotland is also rich in a wide variety of wildlife, from dolphins at Spey Bay to Ospreys at Loch Garten. Other highlights include the opportunity to visit some of the most famous distilleries in Scotland including Machallan, Glenfiddich, Cardhu and Glenlivet.

Total distance: 65 miles (104km)
Duration: 7 nights, 6 days walking
Minimum/maximum daily distances: 6 miles (10km)/13 miles (21km)
Season: March to October
Waymarking: The trail is clearly waymarked and very easy to follow

Starting point of holiday: Buckie
End of holiday: Aviemore
Most convenient major city and International airport: Aberdeen (Edinburgh International Airport).
Outward journey from London to Buckie: Train from London Kings Cross to Aberdeen; journey time 7 hours or Inverness (9 hours). Train from Aberdeen (or Inverness) to Keith; journey time approximately 1 hour then bus from Keith to Buckie (35 minutes).
Return journey to Inverness (Edinburgh or London) at the end of the holiday: Short walk to train station at Avimore then train or bus to Inverness (approximately 45 minutes either journey). Train to London via Inverness (8 hours). Train or bus from Avimore to Edinburgh; journey time approximately 3 hours either journey.

Day 1:
Travel to Buckie where your first nights accommodation has been booked.

Day 2: Buckie to Fochabers. 10 miles (16km).

Day 3: Fochabers to Craigellachie. 13 miles (21km).

Day 4: Craigellachie to Ballindalloch. 12 miles (19km).

Day 5: Ballindalloch to Grantown 13 miles (21km).

Day 6: Grantown to Boat of Garten. 11 miles (17.5km).

Day 7: Boat of Garten to Aviemore. 6 miles (10km).

Day 8: Depart from Aviemore after breakfast.

Accommodation & Meals
7 nights accommodation in en-suite rooms with private bathrooms (where available) in selected guesthouses, inns and hotels.
Traditional Scottish breakfast.

What’s Included
Door to door luggage transfer along the trail.
A map with the route marked on and a guidebook describing the trail.
An information pack containing an itinerary, detailed instructions on how to find your accommodation each night, town plans, information about facilities and places of interest along the trail and a kit list.
Detailed travel instructions on how to get to the start of the holiday and back from the end of it.
Emergency assistance

Extra nights
Consider an extra night in Craigellachie if you would like to visit the Macallan Distillery or the Speyside Cooperage, which makes oak whisky casks, or follow the 4-mile (6.5km) ‘Dufftown Spur’ to the Glenfiddich Distillery, Balvenie Castle and the delightful little town of Dufftown, the ‘Malt Whisky Capital of the World’. Grantown is a very attractive Georgian town with plenty of shops and an interesting museum. Boat of Garten is a lovely little village and is a good choice if you would like to watch the ospreys at Loch Garten.

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