The clocks have gone back, the light is dimming, and winter is fast approaching. However tempting it may be to cosy up and batten down the hatches, getting outdoors and enjoying the changing seasons can be an exhilarating experience.
Not for the faint-hearted, wild swimming is an outdoor sport that has been increasing in popularity for quite some time now, and here at The Malt Whisky Trail we’re raising a dram to those who dare to take the plunge and enjoy our beautiful Speyside setting this winter by collating our favourite wild swimming spots along The Trail – just remember to always plan in advance, prioritise your safety and leave your dram until afterwards!
Diving straight into our first spot, we come to Findhorn beach, located along the Moray coast just above Forres and near our Dallas Dhu distillery. Situated on a little peninsula that offers views of the Black Isle, Sutherland, and as far afield as Orkney, this beach boasts large sand dunes, rolling waves, and a sandy terrain perfect for a chilly swim. Grab that wetsuit because you’re guaranteed a great (if not a tad cold) swim.
Following the coast west, we come to the seaside town of Lossiemouth that has an attractive East Beach. This little gem boasts beautiful pale sand, soft gentle waves, and a lovely seafront, perfect for a stroll after your dip in the ocean. There’s a good chance you’ll spot some marine wildlife too – if you’re lucky you may find yourself swimming with the the fish, dolphins and seals. Once you’ve dried off, why not head to our Glen Moray distillery for a warming dram after a windswept day?
Heading slightly off-piste inland between Benromach (Forres) and The Glenlivet (Glenlivet) we come to a secluded natural phenomenon. Dulsie waterfall is the perfect swimming spot for a tranquil weekend. Don’t let the chill deter you as you breathe in the fresh air and bathe in the natural showers that flow into the Findhorn River. Afterwards, there is only one way to get cosy and that’s with a dram in hand at one of these toasty distilleries.
Last on our list is the infamous River Spey. Despite it being the fastest flowing river in Scotland and 172 kilometers in length, this river offers many calm and tranquil bathing spots. Swimmers can enter underneath the bridge at Carron as this spot provides a small beach-like bank. There is enough depth to swim around comfortably before finishing up your wild swimming adventure with a stop at our Cardhu Distillery.
So grab the towel, look out that wetsuit and don’t let the winter chill put you off the gorgeous Speyside elements over the winter months. A warming dram and welcome will always be waiting for you at one of our distilleries on the Malt Whisky Trail.
For more information on wild swimming as well as important safety tips, visit the Wild Swimming site here.