Speyside Way

Speyside Way

A self-guided walking holiday from Buckie to Newtonmore, following the course of the spectacular River Spey

3 to 11 nights
27-101 miles
Moderate to Moderate / Demanding

From £385 per person

Find your holiday

About the trail

Follow the Speyside Way along the River Spey from the wave-battered coastline up through birchwoods and pastures, with views of heather-clad hills giving way steadily to the rising peaks of the Cairngorm Mountains. The Speyside Way keeps to clear paths and tracks, which are chiefly low-level save for a hillier foray from the riverbank between Ballindalloch and Grantown.

The trail is alive with welcoming villages and a wide variety of wildlife, from ospreys to dolphins, while budding historians will love the Pictish relics, standing stones and ancient castles. Some of Scotland’s most famous distilleries await, too, including Glenfiddich, Machallan, and Cardhu. Overall, the Speyside Way is an approachable, settled route through a wild and beguiling landscape.

We offer multiple holiday options along this trail. If you wish to experience the entire trail, simply select the first option from the list below.

Choose your route

  • Speyside Way and Tomintoul Spur
  • Speyside Way
  • Speyside Way Short Break

About this route

3 nights
27 miles
Moderate / Demanding
1st April to 31st October

From £385 per person

Speyside Way Short Break

With the mountainous Cairngorms above and the sparkling River Spey rushing alongside, this short walking holiday tours between the many charming villages of this central portion of the Speyside Way from Craigellachie to Grantown-on-Spey.

The old railway stations and village hubs offer plenty of fascinating insight into the industrial heritage of the local area, while whisky distilleries and ample wildlife provide an interesting and varied walk, with beautiful scenery throughout.

Available tours

Code Tour Duration Difficulty Price per person
SPWSB1 From Craigellachie to Grantown-on-Spey 3 nights, 2 days walking Moderate / Demanding £385

Short breaks

Code Tour Duration Difficulty Price per person
SPWSB1 From Craigellachie to Grantown-on-Spey 3 nights, 2 days walking Moderate / Demanding £385

Speyside Way Short Break 3 nights, 2 days walking

£NNN per person
  • Itinerary
  • What's included?
  • Extra nights?
  • Tour facts
  • Route profile
  • Travel info
  • Weather
  • Holiday Highlights

Travel to Craigellachie where your first night's accommodation will be booked

Day 1

Craigellachie to Ballindalloch. 12 miles (19km) / 787 ft (240 m) ascent

Day 2

Ballindalloch to Grantown-on-Spey. 14.5 miles (23.5km) / 1522 ft (464 m) ascent


Depart from Grantown-on-Spey after breakfast

Your Itinerary

This itinerary lists our preferred overnight stops for this tour. Sometimes there may be a shortage of available accommodation in a preferred location, in which case we will transfer you from the trail to your accommodation and back again at no extra charge. Overnight stops marked with a (T) will always require transfers as standard.

Overnight stops marked with an (L) have very limited accommodation, and therefore more often than not will also require a transfer, particularly on bank holidays and weekends. We will use non-transfer accommodation wherever possible.

The daily mileages quoted are average trail miles only and do not include the distance from the trail to your accommodation. We do not expect you to have to travel more than a mile from the trail to your accommodation in most cases; should your accommodation be further than this, transfers will be provided as standard if practical. A very limited number of stops will require you to travel on foot up to two miles off the trail, however these instances will be clearly communicated to you if applicable.

Further transfers may also be required due to some accommodations having a two-night minimum booking policy, especially at weekends.

Below are the additional costs that may apply depending on your requirements. Dog-friendly tours are subject to a Daily Dog Charge, which will be listed below if applicable. Our standard prices per person are based upon two people sharing a room; if you are on your own, or are part of a group but require a room of your own, then the Solo Traveller or Single Supplements apply respectively:

A note about transfers
Solo Traveller Supplement
£60.00 per person / per night
Single Supplement
£50.00 per person / per night

You can add rest days at any of the overnight stops:

Extra night (Standard)
£65.00 per person / per night
© Contours Walking Holidays Speyside Way Short Break map
Craigellachie to Grantown-on-Spey
27 miles (43 km)
1st April to 31st October

Holiday highlights

Visiting the array of whisky distilleries found along the trail, which contributed greatly to the region's growth across time.

Exploring the many little villages on-route and learning about their local history.

Enjoying magnificent views from the tops of steep slopes and revelling in the accompanying sense of achievement.

What's included?

  • 3 nights' accommodation in en-suite rooms (where available) in selected B&B’s, hotels, inns and guesthouses along the trail, or a short distance away via taxi provided at our expense.
  • Breakfast each day.
  • Door to door luggage transfer.
  • Maps with the route marked on and a guidebook or route notes describing the trail.
  • An information pack containing an itinerary, instructions on how to find your accommodation each night and a kit list.
  • Detailed travel instructions on how to get to the start of your holiday and back from the end of it.

Extra Nights & Rest Days

An extra night is a wonderful way to extend your holiday.

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-on-Spey is a very attractive Georgian town with plenty of shops and an interesting museum.

You can add rest days at any of the overnight stops:

Extra night (Standard)
£65.00 per person / per night

Tour Facts

Total distance: 26.5 miles (42.5 km)
Duration: 3 nights, 2 days walking
Minimum daily distance: 12 miles (19 km)
Maximum daily distance: 14.5 miles (23.5 km)
Code: SPWSB1 Grade: Moderate / Demanding
Season: 1st April - 31st October
Start of holiday: Craigellachie
End of holiday: Grantown-on-Spey

Route Profile

Speyside Way Short Break Route Profile

Travel Information

Useful information and travel links that will assist you in your plans to travel to the start of the holiday and back from the end of it are sent to you with your full tour pack. A summary is given below:

By Air

The most convenient major cities and international airports are Inverness and Aberdeen.

By Rail

The nearest railway stations to the start of the trail (Craigellachie) are Keith (14 miles away) or Elgin (14 miles away). The nearest station to the end of the trail (Grantown-on-Spey) is Aviemore (14 miles away).

By Bus

There is no regular bus service from either Keith or Elgin to Craigellachie, so a taxi would be required at most times.

From London

Trains run from London Euston & Kings Cross Stations to Keith and Elgin.

Weather Information

To find out more about the weather forecast for your chosen holiday's general location, please see the following websites:

  • MetCheck - This website allows you to look up detailed weather information for specific locations as far as six months in advance.
  • Met Office - This website shows regional area forecasts a few days in advance, with a general UK forecast description of up to 30 days in advance.
  • Mountain Forecast - This website shows what the forecast is like up on specific hills and fells, and offers forecasts a few days in advance.