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    Speyside: Explore the Whisky River by Canoe

    7 min read

    By Rupert Shanks, Chief Storyteller
    More by Rupert

    Why Canoe the River Spey?

    Speyside whisky distilleries produce more of the good stuff than any other region. The River Spey or ‘Whisky River’ is also a beautiful place to explore by canoe, whether you’re a whisky nut or not.

    We’re running a 4-day canoeing expedition along the River Spey which is a perfect way to soak up the whisky culture!

    Open canoeing along the Spey is a diverse experience; from leisurely meandering to occasional adrenalin-raising rapids. It’s a chance to learn about the true nature of the whisky river and how it has contributed to some of the world’s most famous malts. Enjoy a tranquil experience that’s a world away from the average tour bus. Instead of catching a glimpse of the beautiful Scottish scenery through the window, immerse yourself in it. No real canoeing experience is required on one of our guided trips.

    Whisky Month: The Tranquil River Spey

    Enjoy a Dram on the River Bank

    This journey by open canoe along the lifeblood of Scotland’s most celebrated whisky region will take you among the pine forests and heather-covered hills and you’ll notice nearly every village boasts its own distillery. As you descend the River Spey you’ll paddle past distilleries such as Craigellachie, Knockando and Cragganmore. Of course, the journey includes dropping in for a tasting too. When compared with other regions Speyside malts are said to be sweeter, lighter and more honeyed. Generally, they aren’t as peaty as Islay or Highlands drams and have less salinity than the islands. But the best way to decide your favourite is to try a few yourself.

    On day three you might want to hold off on the dram until you have negotiated the rapids at Station Pool near Knockando. After a bit of fun and excitement in white water what better way to celebrate your newly honed canoeing skills than with a dram?

    Whisky month: River Spey

    Rest Under the Stars

    Wild camping under the stars offers a true wilderness experience and a chance to grasp the wonder of Scotland’s dark skies. Your canoe is your transport and your backpack, and everything can be packed up again as you move downstream.

    It means plenty of fresh, delicious food can be packed into the canoes and you’ll never go hungry. You’ll camp along the banks of the Spey and make dinner over the campfire. As the evening descends take advantage of the low light pollution by simply looking up and taking it all in. In the morning your guide will brew up a pot of our own wilderness roast coffee to set you up for the day ahead.

    Whisky River

    Wild camping by the River Spey

    Fancy Joining Us on a Trip?

    Our customers rate us an average of 4.9 out of 5 this trip: Open Canoeing – River Spey Descent so what are you waiting for? Check out our upcoming  trip dates below:

    Meet the Author: Rupert Shanks

    “After a spell in the corporate world in London Rupert decided to find a more rewarding way of life involving a closer connection to the outdoors and to his camera! Rupert produces a lot of the photography and video for Wilderness Scotland and works within the Marketing team.”

    View profileMore by Rupert

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