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Speyside Whisky Festival To Make Triumphant Return For 2023

Organizers of the renowned Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival recently announced its return this spring, with tickets already going on sale Jan. 27th.

Slated to run from April 26th to May 1st, the annual celebration of all things Scotch has blossomed to become one of the largest events of its kind in the world, bringing thousands of visitors to Speyside each year since the festival’s creation in 1999.

Ticket previews became available Jan. 25th, and this year’s event features something for all connoisseurs of the spirit, from the whisky novice to the seasoned vet.

Spirit of Speyside 2023
Organizers of the renowned Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival recently announced its return this spring, with tickets already going on sale Jan. 27th. (image via Spirit of Speyside)

It takes place in distilleries and village halls, local whisky bars, historic castles and the outdoors. In all a range of events will take place throughout Speyside, one of Scotland’s largest whisky producing regions. It’s held in the Moray area in the northeast of the country.

A statement from festival organizers notes that the events are supported by Speyside businesses, communities, members and locals. Platinum partners include Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) and Festival Ambassadors of the Year 2022, Steph and Lauren Murray at the Dowans Hotel, as well as Scotch brands such as The Glenlivet, Diageo, Craigellachie, Benromach, and newcomer to the festival, Speyburn.

To mark Speyburn Distillery’s 125th anniversary, the brand is joining the Spirit of Speyside Festival and opening its doors to the public for the first time. Speyburn will run two tours, three times a day, led by its distillery manager and senior brand ambassador.

More than 500 events are planned for this year’s Festival, and highlights include:

  • Raise A Barrel: Join Balvenie Distillery’s expert cooper Ian McDonald for a morning learning to raise your own barrel. Afterwards, share a dram with Ian and hear a story or two.
  • Tamnavulin Discovery Tour and Tasting Experience: Join Distillery Manager Leon for a guided tour and explore where they craft their single malt whisky, usually closed to the public. Then a guided tasting of four Tamnavulin expressions and their pairing, complete with a signature Speyside cocktail.
  • Keith & Dufftown railway “Dram Tram” evening journey: Take a two-hour evening return train journey from Dufftown station and sample five whiskies associated with the railway’s original route stations Dufftown, Drummuir, Auchindachy, Earlsmill, and Keith.
  • 19 Holes of Golf and Whisky with Glenfarclas: An exclusive opportunity to play 18 holes of golf at the Elgin Golf Club Championship Course with Glenfarclas manager Callum Fraser, enjoy a tasting in the clubhouse before a two-course meal provided by Hardhillock Bar and Bistro.

George McNeil, chairman of The Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival, said that events are “taking place across Elgin, to Kingussie, to Forres, and our comprehensive program brings the journey of Scottish whisky to life for visitors, creating truly world-class and unforgettable experiences set among spectacular scenery.”

He said it’s worth noting that visitors travel from as many as 35 different countries, bringing whisky enthusiasts together over a shared passion and interest.

“I can think of no better antidote to the various challenges of the past few years,” he added.

For more information or to get tickets, check out

Gary Carter

Gary Carter has been at the helm of metro newspapers, magazines, and television news programs as well as a radio host and marketing manager. He is a writer/editor/photographer/designer by trade, with more than 30 years experience in the publishing and marketing field. Gary enjoys working to build something great, whether that be a novel project, a start-up, an organization, a fresh-face to the journalistic world, or even something as simple as a short story. A native Texan and a Pacific Northwest convert, he is a whiskey enthusiast who cut his teeth on it ... literally!

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