10 best Edinburgh whisky tours you can’t miss in 2024

Edinburgh whisky tours

Ready to book your Edinburgh whisky tours?

You’ve landed on the right place as you’re about to discover the 10 best Edinburgh whisky tours — all led by Edinburgh locals so you’ll skip the tourist traps and head straight for the good stuff.

Don’t have time to read about all the tours on the list? No worries — the best whisky tour in Edinburgh is The Scotch Whisky Experience. It has about 835+ stellar reviews, so you can’t go wrong.

If you’d rather explore more distillery visits, there are 9 more tours for whisky lovers on this list, and they all have near-perfect 5 star ratings.

Without further ado, let’s get to this list of the best whisky tours in the heart of Edinburgh, so you can book your tour already.

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🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿 Top 3: Best Edinburgh whisky tours

#1 best Pick
Edinburgh whisky tours

The Scotch Whisky Experience

One of the world’s largest collections of Scotch whisky

Learn the single malt whisky history

#2 best
Edinburgh whisky tours

Edinburgh Whisky Walking Tour

Walking tour to 5 different venues

Haggis and snacks

#3 best
Edinburgh whisky tours

Underground Vaults Evening Ghost Tour with Whisky

Evening ghost tour

Whisky sample

Things to know before you go

  • Bring your ID
  • Don’t show up on an empty stomach
  • The tours vary in length from 50 mins – 3.5 hours
  • Some of the tours are walking tours that include whisky bars and city highlights
  • Dress accordingly on the walking tours

🥃 10 best whisky tours in Edinburgh

1. The Scotch Whisky Experience

Edinburgh whisky tours

⭐️ RATING: 4.5 from 835 reviews | ⏳ TOUR LENGTH: 50 mins |🥃 BOOK NOW

Located near Edinburgh Castle, this is the top rated whisky experience in Edinburgh. I took it myself and sampled some of Scotland’s finest whisky.

The tour is hosted by the Scotch Whisky Experience, which has the world’s largest collection of Scotch whisky.

With each sip, you’ll learn about the types of whisky and the history and cultural influences behind what you’re tasting. The tour guide is friendly, fun, attentive, and knowledgeable about Scotch whisky culture and history.

This is the ultimate whisky tour that should not be missed for an authentic taste of whisky in Edinburgh. It’s a great choice for first time visitors and whisky lovers. Plus, the barrel ride at the end is both fun and informative.

By the end of the whisky distillery tour, you’ll get a whisky glass to take home. This is one of the top Edinburgh souvenirs that will always remind you of this experience.

2. Whisky Tasting with History and Storytelling

Edinburgh whisky tours

⭐️ RATING: 4.9 from 560 reviews | ⏳ TOUR LENGTH: 2 hours |🥃 BOOK NOW

Want to visit one of the best whisky tours Edinburgh has? Then this is the tour for you, as it’s sure to impress even the most sophisticated Scottish whisky connoisseur.

The tour starts on the iconic Royal Mile where you’ll meet your guide for a short walk to one of the supplier’s outstanding whisky venues. During the next two hours you will taste 4 single malt scotch whiskies from the 4 largest whisky-producing regions of Scotland and hear about Scottish history, the production process and the background of the iconic drink.

If you want a unique experience and visit one of the top whisky tastings Edinburgh has, this is the perfect tour for you.

3. Holyrood Distillery Whisky and Gin Guided Tour

Edinburgh whisky tours

⭐️ RATING: 4.5 from 203 reviews | ⏳ TOUR LENGTH: 1 hour |🥃 BOOK NOW

Experience a behind-the-scenes look at the world of whisky and gin at the Holyrood Distillery in Edinburgh city centre. This is a combined tour where you get to taste both whisky and gin, which makes it unique.

The experience starts with a fully guided tour of the distillery where you’ll discover how gin and whisky are created.

Once you arrive, you’ll be greeted with a welcome drink as a way to break the ice. Then you’ll taste samples of award-winning gin and whisky.

4. Underground Vaults Evening Ghost Tour with Whisky

Edinburgh whisky tours

⭐️ RATING: 4.6 from 1910 reviews | ⏳ TOUR LENGTH: 2 hours |🥃 BOOK NOW

On this ghost whisky tour you can tasty whisky while on an evening ghost tour! You’ll follow your cloaked guide into Edinburgh’s underground vaults where they share ghost tales over a glass of whisky in a candle-lit cellar.

If you’re looking for atmosphere, this is the tour for you!

This whisky tasting experience is a fun and scary way to try whisky tasting. The emphasis is on the ghost tour, though, so if you’re interested in a classic distillery tour with a thorough introduction to whisky, this tour might not be for you.

5. Whisky and Folklore in Edinburgh

Edinburgh whisky tours

⭐️ RATING: 5 from 365 reviews | ⏳ TOUR LENGTH: 2 hours |🥃 BOOK NOW

This whisky and folklore tour will take you through a historic and fun-filled journey to taste the best whisky in Scotland.

The tour takes place at the lively and atmospheric Waverley Pub. Here, you’ll taste four single malt whiskies from four different whisky-producing regions of Scotland and uncover the secrets of Scotch whisky-making.

You’ll get to try whisky with relatively delicate and subtle flavours of the Lowlands to the bold and robust tastes from Islay.

This is the best whisky Edinburgh tour for whisky enthusiasts and anyone looking to learn more about whisky and Scottish folklore and traditions. Besides the taste of Scotland, you’ll get some tasting cards with notes on each of the whiskies that you taste.

6. 90-minute introduction to Whisky in the Old Town of Edinburgh

Edinburgh whisky tours

⭐️ RATING: 5 from 114 reviews | ⏳ TOUR LENGTH: 90 mins |🥃 BOOK NOW

On this whisky talking tour, you’ll get to explore an unseen part of Edinburgh while you taste the finest of Scotland’s national drink. If you have a little more whisky experience and would like to taste a rare and complex whisky, you’ll have the chance here.

Under the guidance of a professional whisky guide, you’ll learn the history behind whisky while you taste four drams of whisky from different parts of the whisky trails, from the lowland to the highland distilleries.

The key takeaway here is that this tour is a smaller size tour with no more than 8 travelers.

7. Edinburgh Whisky Walking Tour

Edinburgh whisky tours

⭐️ RATING: 5 from 18 reviews | ⏳ TOUR LENGTH: 3.5 hours |🥃 BOOK NOW

On this Whisky walking tour in the centre of Edinburgh, you’ll have an unforgettable experience visiting five iconic Edinburgh bars and venues chaperoned by a whisky guide!

With a haggis filo pastry in hand, you can look forward to tasting blended Scotch, single malt, cocktails, and food pairings with Black Bottle, Jura, Dewar’s, Benriach and Deanston whiskies – all while hearing stories about this fascinating part of Scottish heritage.

This Edinburgh whisky tour has great value, an excellent top-rated host, unique locations, delicious whisky, and a 24 hours cancellation policy, just in case.

8. Harry Potter Walking Tour and Whisky Tasting

Edinburgh whisky tours

⭐️ RATING: 4.5 from 835 reviews | ⏳ TOUR LENGTH: 3.5 hours |🥃 BOOK NOW

Is there anything better than taking a Harry Potter tour that ends with a whisky tasting? Not really, right?

The first stop of this Harry Potter and whisky tour is Waverley Train Station, as trains were a big part of the young wizard’s journey. Next, you’ll head to Edinburgh University Old College, a spooky graveyard in the Old Town area, and the shop on Victoria Street that inspired Diagon Alley.

Along the way, you’ll see famous sights that inspired JK Rowling when she was writing the Harry Potter books, including The Elephant House cafe, where she wrote the first book.

Then, you’ll visit ‘The Lost Close,’ where a whisky expert will share the history and many hilarious stories of Scotch Whisky.

You will have the chance to try multiple drams from various regions, including the highlands and lowlands. This it the perfect tour for Harry Potter fans and whisky drinkers.

9. Guided Whisky Tasting & Walking Tour with Snacks

Edinburgh whisky tours

⭐️ RATING: 5 from 1 review | ⏳ TOUR LENGTH: 3.5 hours |🥃 BOOK NOW

Your whisky walking tour with snacks begins at one of Edinburgh’s first cask ale bars that sells some of the best whisky. Here, you’ll learn all about its fantastic history, dating back to the 1960s, and taste your first glass of whisky.

After you’ve had your fill of whisky, you’ll visit several iconic bars in Edinburgh to taste a range of Scotch whiskies including blended scotch, single malt, and whisky cocktails. You’ll also get appetisers that complement the whisky.

More than just an Edinburgh whisky tour and tasting, this experience allows you to venture into some of the most beautiful and medieval alleys and sights in Edinburgh while hearing fascinating whisky stories and learn about Scottish whisky exports.

To top it all off, you’ll receive a free Glencairn whisky glass at the end of this private tour.

10. History of Whisky Tour and Whisky Tasting

Edinburgh whisky tours

⭐️ RATING: 4.8 from 73 reviews | ⏳ TOUR LENGTH: 2 hours |🥃 BOOK NOW

Get ready to immerse yourself in an authentic and delicious whisky experience — one of the best whisky tours Edinburgh has to offer.

On this illuminating guided tour, you’ll follow in the footsteps of King James IV, the first famous whisky drinker in the world. You’ll learn all about Edinburgh’s role in bringing whisky to the rest of the world and hear stories about the locals who fell in love with whisky, including George Ballantine and Andrew Usher Jr.

You’ll be in good hands on this tour. Your guide is an award-winning whisky specialist who will tell you everything about Scottish whisky.

You’ll taste 4 different whiskies in the atmospheric Megget’s Cellar by candlelight.

For a small group tour of the best whisky in Scotland, look no further than this private whisky tasting Edinburgh experience.

🙋‍♀️ Edinburgh whisky guide and FAQ

What is the best whiskey distillery to visit in Scotland?

Glenfiddich in Dufftown is among the world’s most renowned whisky distilleries.

Their tours are exceptional as the staff is highly informed about the whisky production and tasting procedures.

How long is a Whiskey Tour in Edinburgh?

A whisky tour in Edinburgh lasts from 50 minutes to 3.5 hours. The long tours are usually walking tours where you visit several whisky bars and venues.

Are any distillery tours open in Scotland?

Yes! As Covid-19 restrictions come to an end in Scotland, visitor attractions such as Distillery Visitor Centers have reopened and are eagerly awaiting your arrival!

What is whiskey vs whisky?

“Whisky” (without an “e”) refers to grain spirits distilled in Scotland, Japan, or Canada. “Whiskey” (with an “e”) refers to grain spirits distilled in the United States or Ireland.

Which whisky is famous in Scotland?

Speyside is home to some of the world’s most famous whiskies, including renowned scotch whiskies like Glenlivet, Glenfiddich, and The Macallan.

To put their popularity into perspective, these three distilleries alone account for one-third of the entire single malt market.

Edinburgh whisky tours

What are the top Scottish whiskeys?

These are the top 5 Scottish whiskies:
1. The Glenmorangie 10 year old
2. Bowmore 15 Year Old
3. MacNair’s Lum Reek Peated 21 Year Old
4. Balvenie Double Wood 12 Year Old
5. Dalmore 15

Is Scotch the same as Scottish whisky and what’s whiskey?

The terms whiskey, whisky, and Scotch all refer to the same drink, with the main difference being regionality and the country where it’s produced.

Whisky without the ‘e’, refers to whisky made in Scotland. Whiskey with an “e” is used in the United States and Ireland. Scotch whisky specifically refers to whisky made in Scotland.

How many whisky distilleries are there in Scotland? 

Scotland is home to the greatest concentration of whisky production in the world, with over 130 malt and grain whisky distilleries, as of 2023.

Why is Scotland famous for whiskey?

Whisky-making is believed to have begun in Scotland when winemaking methods were introduced to monasteries in Europe.

However, without access to grapes, monks began using grain mash to produce an early version of the popular spirit.

The name “whisky” comes from the Gaelic term “uisge beatha,” which means “water of life” and describes the drink’s importance and significance in Scottish culture.

What is the no 1 whisky in Scotland?

The Glenmorangie 10 year old is one of the best whiskies in Scotland.

With a warm and fruity malt profile, this whisky is both basic and elegant. This is an easy-drinking whisky that is perfect for any occasion.

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