A new tourism campaign based on the legend of the Loch Ness Monster is hoping to inspire visitors to Inverness and Loch Ness outside of the summer season.
The six-week digital marketing campaign from VisitBritain, which gets underway in France and Germany - two of Britain’s most valuable visitor markets - and The Netherlands next week, uses images and videos to showcase the incredible experiences that can only be had in the Inverness and Loch Ness area.
The campaign offers tips on how to hunt for Scotland’s most famous monster with images offering advice including ‘covering as much ground as possible’ by exploring the area in a campervan, ‘listening to the locals’ on a guided kayak tour and ‘staying as quiet as possible’ while amongst deer and other wildlife in the countryside.
The Inverness Loch Ness campaign, launched earlier this year with an initial three-week run, is part of a longer-term plan to grow inbound tourism to the area outside of the traditionally busy summer period.
VisitBritain are hoping to build on the success of tourism in the area with the latest figures showing that there were 316,000 international visits to Inverness in 2015, up 21 per cent on the previous year.
VisitBritain Director of Marketing Robin Johnson said: “Steeped in history and culture and surrounded by breath-taking scenery, the Inverness and Loch Ness area offers an unbeatable holiday experience at all times of the year.
“By inspiring visitors to book a trip now to come and explore this stunning part of the Highlands – and maybe even spot Nessie – we can spread the economic benefits of tourism throughout the year.”
VisitInvernessLochNess Chief Executive Graeme Ambrose said: “This campaign is a fantastic way to harness the global fascination with Nessie to shine a light on all that is great about Inverness and Loch Ness, driving growth and attracting more visitors year-round.”
Just last month VisitBritain hosted 49 of the world’s top travel bloggers in Inverness and Loch Ness when it brought the Social Travel Summit, a global social media conference, to Inverness.
It has been a record-breaking year to date for overall inbound tourism to the UK. July was the highest month ever with 3.8 million visits, up 2 per cent on last July and bringing inbound visits for 2016 so far to 21.1 million, up 2 per cent on the same January to July period last year.
Last year set a record for inbound tourism to Britain on visits and spend with 36.1 million visits, 5 per cent up on 2014, and spending up 1 per cent to £22.1 billion.