Thursday, 29 October 2021 10:22

New campaign to set boost countryside tourism

New campaign to set boost countryside tourism

VisitScotland has launched a joint campaign with three other organisations, aiming to spread the word about the country’s National Forest Estate to a million consumers.

The national tourism board has teamed up with Forestry Commission Scotland, Forest Holidays and Scottish Natural Heritage to encourage visitors to enjoy an autumn walk in the Scottish countryside.

Last year 654,000 trips were made by domestic holidaymakers, solely to take advantage of its many paths and trails, generating £187million for the Scottish economy. Additionally, 4.4 million trips made by UK visitors last year included walking or hiking, spending a total of £1.2billion.

Research has found that Scotland’s hillsides and woodland are the most popular walking spots for visitors, followed by lochs, coasts and through the countryside.

Scotland has more than 2,000km of waymarked trails across Scotland, which use Forestry Commission Scotland’s trail grading system to make it even easier for visitors to plan trips.

The new campaign is being led on social media, with the e-marketing expected to reach up to a million consumers.

Malcolm Roughead, chief executive of VisitScotland said: “Scotland is home to a rich landscape, with some of the most beautiful scenery in the world, and walkers are responding to that in their millions with more and more people venturing into the great outdoors and boosting the local economy.

“Scotland’s National Forest Estate continues to be a popular attraction for our most adventurous visitors and we hope this campaign will encourage even more intrepid hikers and strollers to discover our stunning forests this autumn.”

Laura Stewart, Forestry Commission Scotland marketing manager, said: “The National Forest Estate offers some of the best places to see autumn colours. Faskally in Highland Perthshire and Loch Eck in Argyll Forest Park are simply stunning at the moment. With over 2000km of waymarked trails across Scotland, autumn is the perfect time to get out and explore. And don’t forget your four-legged friends are welcome too!”

Theresa Kewell, Scottish Natural Heritage campaigns officer, said: “It’s great to see so many people enjoying Scotland’s outdoors and we hope this joint campaign will highlight further just how wonderful our forests are, particularly at this time of year. We’re also really pleased to be promoting responsible dog walking because as part of the Scottish Outdoor Access Code guidance, we want you to enjoy your walks and your access rights as fully as possible.”

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