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Scotland the perfect getaway

April 28, 2017 Destination Europe No Comments Email Email

With nearly a quarter of visitors holidaying in Scotland to ‘get away from it all’, internet sensations the Kilted Yogis were in Glasgow today to show tour operators from around the world exactly why the country is the perfect place to relax.

Finlay Wilson and Tristan Cameron-Harper, whose video of them practising yoga in traditional Scottish attire has been viewed more than 50 million times, were at the country’s biggest travel show – VisitScotland Expo – to help the national tourism organisation unveil the findings of its most extensive ever visitor survey.

Nearly a quarter (23%) of the 12,000 visitors polled said ‘getting away from it all’ was one of the main reasons they enjoyed holidaying in Scotland. This figure rose to 29% among those living here.

Unsurprisingly, the scenery and landscape was the most popular reason to visit, with 50% of those polled citing Scotland’s vistas. History and culture (33%) was second on the list, while a desire to return after previously visiting Scotland (24%) was third.

Popular culture continues to inspire visitors, with 1 in 10 indicating they were prompted to book a trip to Scotland by a film or television show. Outlander was both the stand-out book and television show inspiring visitors, particularly among North Americans, who were more than twice as likely as those from any other country to cite the Diana Gabaldon-penned phenomenon as a reason for coming to Scotland.

The survey, which was carried out over the summers of 2016 and 2015, also showed that:

  • 78% strongly agreed that Scotland was a country worth visiting more than once
  • 75% are likely to highly recommend Scotland as a holiday or shortbreak destination
  • 70% scored their Scotland experience as nine or ten out of ten, with 46% rating it 10/10
  • 65% strongly agreed that they were made to feel really welcome in Scotland
  • 68% of visitors use smartphones to find out information while in Scotland

Held at the Scottish Events Campus (SEC), VisitScotland Expo 2017 is the 38th staging of Scotland’s biggest business-to-business event for the travel trade. The national tourism organisation’s flagship show is giving 276 Scottish tourism businesses – including accommodation providers, visitor attractions and activity providers – from every corner of the country the chance to showcase their products and services to more than 600 tour operators and travel agents from all over the world.

The event will have a net economic impact of £2.5 million on the local economy while, thanks to one-to-one appointments facilitated by VisitScotland, exhibitors are expected to do more than £22,000 worth of business over the two days.

Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Tourism and External Affairs, said: Scotland offers visitors a warm welcome. As the results of this survey confirm, our spectacular landscapes and seascapes provide the perfect background for a wide range of experiences for tourists. Rural and island economies benefit too because tourism is of vital importance to hotels, shops, restaurants and other businesses in these areas that every year welcome millions of visitors.”

Malcolm Roughead, Chief Executive of VisitScotland, said: We are delighted with the results of our most extensive visitor survey yet, which show that Scotland is a spectacular, welcoming destination that people from all over the world are inspired to visit time and time again. At our flagship trade show, few people are better placed to advocate Scotland as the perfect place to get away from it allthan Finlay and Tristan, whose video has been watched by millions of prospective visitors from all over the world.”

Finlay Wilson, Founder of Heart Space Yoga & Bodyworks in Dundee, said: Its easy to see why so many people come to Scotland to get away from it all, whether its climbing munros, going mountain biking or getting a ferry over to one of our spectacular islands. And as millions of people know after watching our video, Scotland is also the perfect place to relax and indulge in a spot of kilted yoga!”

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