Scottish Highlands

Climbing, Biking, and Scotch

The Scottish highlands     Photo: Robert Harding/Digital Vision/Getty

THE DRAW Established in 2003, Cairngorms National Park is home to one-quarter of Great Britain's threatened flora and fauna, as well as five peaks over 4,000 feet. Scale them with Talisman Mountain Activities (private guiding, $275; talisman-activities.co.uk), or rent a bike at Basecamp Mountainbike, near Fort William, and dive into 22 miles of singletrack in Cairngorms' Laggan Wolftrax Mountain Bike Park (rentals, $40; basecampmtb.com).

THE DRINK Dalwhinnie, one of Scotland's highest-altitude distilleries, was built in 1897 near 1,484-foot Drumochter Pass. Good call: According to the late whiskey expert Michael Jackson, the cold local springwater is essential to the famed "honeyed with a touch of peat" character in Dalwhinnie's 15-year-old single malt. Drink it neat or on the rocks, and never with soda ($63; malts.com).

THE RECOVERY Crash near the distillery at the Suie Hotel (from $70; suiehotel.com) and taste dozens more Scotches at the woodstove-heated bar.

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