What to do and see in The Hebrides, Scotland: The Best Things to do Good for a Rainy Day

May 17, 2022 Randal Brittian

This beautiful archipelago, where Scottish Gaelic is still spoken, is divided into the Inner and Outer Hebrides and stretches the length of Scotland's west coast. The most visited and largest of the Western Isles is the brooding Isle of Skye, a short ferry ride or bridge away from the mainland. Islay, home to prolific whisky production, is another gem. Highlights of the less visited Outer Isles include stark Lewis and the town of Stornoway, rugged Harris, with sandy beaches and tranquil Barra.
Restaurants in The Hebrides

1. Laphroaig Distillery

Laphroaig Distillery, Port Ellen PA42 7DU Scotland +44 1496 302418 [email protected] http://www.laphroaig.com/en/book-islay-distillery-tour
Excellent
84%
Good
13%
Satisfactory
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5.0 based on 1,093 reviews

Laphroaig Distillery

For nearly 200 years a small team of dedicated islanders have worked here to create what is considered to be the most distinctive single malt in the world. Of course over time the people change, but our traditional methods, the ancient skills and absolute dedication to quality always remains. We would be proud if you make the journey to visit our home and you will be assured of the warmest of welcomes when you do.

Reviewed By nature-travel-12 - Leeds, United Kingdom

We had a great distillery tour! Very interesting. Lovely friendly and welcoming staff. A great range of choices in the gift shop! Extensive museum. Cosy ‘cafe’ area! A free small bottle for us as we arrived as ‘friends of laphroig’, another free ‘welcome whisky’ in the cafe before the tour, and 3 tasters after, all for the total price of £10! Amazing. We also enjoyed heading out to the field to place our ‘plot’ flag. All in all a great experience and we’d really recommend it!

2. Bruichladdich Distillery

Bruichladdich PA49 7UN Scotland +44 1496 850190 [email protected] http://www.bruichladdich.com
Excellent
83%
Good
13%
Satisfactory
2%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

5.0 based on 991 reviews

Bruichladdich Distillery

We are an innovative Islay distillery producing unpeated Bruichladdich, heavily peated Port Charlotte and super-heavily peated Octomore single malt whiskies. We use a wide range of barley types, including organic and bere, grown on a variety of terroirs including Islay. We also distill The Botanist gin. Mary at the Laddieshop will be glad to organise a tour of our distillery for you and the distilling team will happily answer any questions you may have.

Reviewed By frankt918 - Elmshorn, Germany

Our fourth visit to Bruichladdich confirmed our opinion that this is the best whisky experience on Islay. The friendly, knowledgeable, and (above all) personally engaged Bruichladdich people made our warehouse tour a warming, worthwhile highlight of this year’s Islay vacation. It’s fascinating to see and hear how this distillery has progressed and developed over the years, without losing the ‘family flavor ‘ that makes the visit so much more meaningful. Most of the expressions for sale in the shop are available for tasting, which makes it a bit easier to decide which of the fascinating bottles to purchase (not always an easy decision). We were so pleased with the Valinch 47 that we returned the next day and bought some more bottles! We’ve visited all of the Islay distilleries in the past few years, and we think that Bruichladdich is still the most enjoyable (mainly because of the personal engagement of the good people who work there)!

3. Isle of Raasay Distillery

IV40 8PB Scotland +44 1478 470178 [email protected] http://raasaydistillery.com/
Excellent
91%
Good
4%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
1%
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5.0 based on 113 reviews

Isle of Raasay Distillery

Enjoy a guided whisky tasting tour through Isle of Raasay Distillery and into our tasting room where you’ll be offered a complementary dram of Raasay While We Wait single malt; representative of what’s to come from our casks in the future, as well as another 2 whiskies from R&B Distillers. The Isle of Raasay Distillery welcomes visitors from around the globe with any level of whisky knowledge, from the curious to the connoisseur. As you pass the all-important copper pot stills, you will catch sight of the incredible view across to Skye, arguably the best from any Scottish distillery. The Isle of Raasay Distillery visitor centre also includes a well-stocked gift shop of whisky and distillery merchandise. Pick up something to remember your visit by or share your experience with friends and family back home.

Reviewed By 79katya

A new whisky and gin distillery on the Scottish scene, but they sure are doing something right! Our tour leader was wonderfully engaging and kind, including plenty of history about the island, its people, and its unique geology. They have done a beautiful job with the building, and put a lot of thought into every detail. Personable, scenic, and delicious... they should be very proud. Can’t wait for their first single malt release next year!

By the pier Isle Ornsay, Sleat, IV43 3QR Scotland +44 1471 833332 [email protected] http://eileaniarmain.co.uk/an-talla-dearg-gallery/
Excellent
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5.0 based on 10 reviews

Gallery An Talla Dearg

On the waterfront by a quiet pier, Gallery An Talla Dearg is one of the most beautiful gallery locations anywhere. With a range of exhibitions from April to October, this unique and intimate gallery allows the artist to be present and often creatively working. Featuring talented artists of local, national and even international reputation, it is a special place to enjoy superb artwork.

5. Duart Castle

Duart Castle Isle of Mull, PA64 6AP Scotland +44 1680 812309 [email protected] http://www.duartcastle.com/
Excellent
48%
Good
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Satisfactory
9%
Poor
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4.5 based on 663 reviews

Duart Castle

For over 700 years, Duart Castle, the seat of Clan Maclean, has dominated the view to the Sound of Mull and Loch Linnhe with its huge curtain walls and solid keep. Tour the Castle, explore the grounds and learn more about the Clan. Enjoy the ancient Keep, ghostly Dungeons, magnificent Banqueting Hall, quaint Edwardian State Rooms and breathtaking views from the Battlements. Duart Castle was featured in a number of Hollywood films such as Sean Connery's, Entrapment (1999), "When Eight Bells Toll" (1971) with Antony Hopkins and "I Know Where I'm Going" (1945). The Castle is open from April through to October every year and hosts a number of Weddings and Events throughout the summer months such as Outdoor Theatre, Military Re-enactments, Music, Storytelling, Birds of Prey and Scottish Pipers and Highland Dancers. Travel to Mull via the Caledonian MacBrayne ferry from Lochaline to Fishnish or from Oban to Craignure. Duart Castle is a 10 minute drive from Craignure.

Reviewed By 441sandym

Great to be back at Duart Castle,i have been here many times,a lot of scaffolding around the castle,but it is needed for the renovation work going on at the castle it's looking great,really love it here,well worth a visit

Kenneth Street, Stornoway HS1 2DR Scotland +44 1851 703307 http://lanntair.com/
Excellent
48%
Good
41%
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4.5 based on 243 reviews

An Lanntair Gallery

Reviewed By JillG411 - London, United Kingdom

This may only be a small museum, but I loved all the activities and films that went alongside the displays. All of Harris and Lewis life was represented here, from films in Gaelic to exhibits on tradtional jobs and crafts. Local people had been interviewed on different aspects of culture in the Outer Hebrides and their responses were shown in film clips, which I found fascinating. I loved the film explanation of the Lewis chessmen and the exhibit of some chessmen. I have decided to go to the British Museum and see some more of them based on this visit! There was a game about trying to work out what the Gaelic placename was in English to help the postman deliver his letters- good for the young and not so young! The exhibitions are housed in a modern, airy building with a long corridor showing views of the sea - and a coffee shop to recover from the showers. All in all, a very pleasant visit.

7. Colbost Croft Museum

4 Miles from Dunvegan on the Glendale Rd, Dunvegan Scotland
Excellent
53%
Good
35%
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4.5 based on 113 reviews

Colbost Croft Museum

8. Ardbeg Distillery

Port Ellen PA42 7EA Scotland +44 1496 302244 [email protected] http://www.ardbeg.com
Excellent
71%
Good
21%
Satisfactory
5%
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4.5 based on 929 reviews

Ardbeg Distillery

Reviewed By FandCNotts

Went on the tour of the distillery and tasting. Being in the off season February I feel we got an extra personal service. Emma our tour guide was really knowledgeable and passionate about the place and the product, the tour was the most informative and interesting out of all the ones I went on. The whiskey is off course top notch, we got to try whatever we liked. The setting of the distillery is breath taking. Loved the Old Kiln restaurant so much went back twice. The pies were so tasty! There is also a path so if the weather allows you can take in the views and have a beautiful walk between Ardbeg, Laphroig and Lavgavulin distilleries. I love everything about Ardbeg and hope to be back one day!

9. Bunnahabhain Distillery

Port Askaig PA46 7RP Scotland +44 1496 840646 [email protected] http://www.bunnahabhain.com
Excellent
68%
Good
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Satisfactory
7%
Poor
3%
Terrible
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Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 496 reviews

Bunnahabhain Distillery

Reviewed By Intensivewine

What a great tour - we visited a lot of distillers and this was our last on the island. Fantastic stories and kept giving us new info. Best sherry drams on the island - generous and fantastic range!

10. Tobermory Distillery

High Street, Tobermory PA75 Scotland +44 1688 302647 [email protected] http://tobermorydistillery.com/
Excellent
62%
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Satisfactory
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Poor
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4.5 based on 736 reviews

Tobermory Distillery

Reviewed By Baz_1972

Recently visited Tobermory and paid a visit to the Distillery. Located close to where the bus from Craignure arrives all was straightforward, tour booking, tasting etc. Informative tour explained all aspects of the production process of Tobermory and Ledaig Whisky. The process of malting and peating was explained in detail and the guide talked through all the processes involved in a working distillery for the production of Single Malt Scotch Whisky. Also included was a brief insight into the distillery’s new Gin (‘diversification’) ???? flavoured with local botanicals from the island flora. The tasting at the end of the tour was most enjoyable with a wide choice of whiskies to sample - all with their individual character. The distillery shop is well stocked with the signature malts Tobermory 12 and Ledaig 10 (Ledchig - I think that’s the correct pronunciation) along with other ages. The shop also had a good variety of whisky glasses, and other goods from clothing to confectionery and of course the Tobermory Gin. Thanks to one and all for an enjoyable tour, tastings and of course shopping experience.

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