National parks bring £243m in to Scotland

Cairngorm National Park helped bring a tourism boost to Scotland. Picture: Ian Rutherford
Cairngorm National Park helped bring a tourism boost to Scotland. Picture: Ian Rutherford
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National parks have welcomed a 25% increase in both domestic tourism and spending.

More than one million trips were recorded across Loch Lomond and the Trossachs and the Cairngorms last year, tourism agency VisitScotland said.

The visitors spent £243 million in the two parks, averaging about £226 per trip.

The domestic tourists, known as “staycationers”, play a vital role in the economy, according to VisitScotland chairman Mike Cantlay.

Tremendous

“This year’s celebrations for the Year of Natural Scotland have provided a fantastic opportunity to promote these treasured idylls, and we hope that these tremendous figures will grow even further,” he said.

The Cairngorms appeared to attract a younger crowd and was most popular among international visitors from the United States, Germany and Norway, according to the review of parks in 2012.

Loch Lomond was more popular with older people and international visitors from Germany, France and Spain.

Fiona Logan, chief executive of Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park, said: “These latest visitor figures are credit not only to the stunning natural beauty of our national parks but also the quality service provided by our tourism businesses.”

Popular

Grant Moir, chief executive of the Cairngorms National Park Authority, said: “The Cairngorms National Park celebrates its 10th birthday this year, a mere youngster, yet it’s making a significant contribution to the Scottish economy. It has certainly proved a very popular destination with the rise of the staycation in recent years and with the weather we’ve had recently, why go anywhere else?”