A9, Junction A95; 10 minutes
Free WiFi for visitors
Vegetarian or vegan options
Parking available onsite
Electric car charging
A local landmark, The Speyside Centre peeps out of a pine forest in the Cairngorms. Once nearly destroyed by a fire, it arose after a sensitive rebuild and will celebrate its 50th anniversary in 2022.
The plant selection is excellent (the local heaths and heathers drew the Lambie family here in the 1970s), the locally-inspired gift shop is worth a rummage and the playground is ideal for little ones.
The tea-room has grown along with its reputation. Famous for its clootie dumplings (a spiced fruit pudding baked to Grandad’s secret recipe), the kitchen draws from its rich surrounds to offer a true taste of Scotland. Dishes are hearty and nourishing, perhaps toasted sandwiches, steak pie or soup seasoned with garden herbs. Ignoring the carrot cake would be unforgivable. On the terrace (the 'Sitooterie') watch red squirrels, butterflies and birds race around as you eat. Magical.
Scotland’s Malt Whisky Trail starts here which explains the admirable selection of regional malts.
Buy The Extra Mile Guide
The Extra Mile: Delicious Alternatives to Motorway Services is your essential glovebox guide to good food on the move. The guidebook is a great gift for motorists and foodies who prefer to avoid motorway services and boring, big-brand food. Find independent cafes, pubs, local coffee and tea shops and lovely farm shops near motorway junctions and main roads. To improve your journey, support small businesses and discover real local flavours, order your copy today (edition 4 published March 2023 and available now).