Islay is a prosperous island, helped by its long established whisky industry. It has eight busy distilleries producing world famous whisky whose brands are known around world, indeed Islay’s whisky industry contributes some half a billion pounds in tax to the Exchequer! In addition, to this we have a thriving farming community, Islay’s cattle and sheep are sold at the local auction mart to all over Scotland.
Tourism plays a large part in Islay’s prosperity – not just for the whisky experience but bird watching too. Winter brings us tens of thousands of Barnacle geese from Greenland, plus many other varieties too.
Fishing is another important industry. Our local restaurants always have fresh lobsters and scallops caught earlier in the day available on their menu, and Islay oysters are supplied to restaurants all over the UK.
Things to do
Each year, at the end of May we have the Islay Festival of Malt and Music. People travel from all over the world to enjoy it.
Every distillery hosts an Open Day with live music, whisky tasting and master classes. At this time, as part of the festival celebrations, each distillery has a new bottle release – which are very sought after!
If rugby is more your thing, the annual Beach Rugby tournament takes place in Port Ellen during the summer.
Islay has an 18-hole links golf course, which has just been upgraded to championship level. Each year it hosts a local competition.
A Jazz Festival, the annual Islay Jura Agriculture Show in August and many more things to see and do.
There is something for everyone!
A full schedule of upcoming Islay events, plus lots of other useful information, can be found on www.islayinfo.com
Photography on this website is provided by Island Light Photography