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Visitors undeterred by rain and snow

A new Scottish tourist attraction – the weather

Prince Charles presented a BBC forecast during a visit to Scotland
Prince Charles presented a BBC forecast during a visit to Scotland

It’s Bank Holiday weekend and it’s been snowing. But it seems that visitors to Scotland don’t care about the inclement weather – and some say it is the main reason why they make the trip north.

Research by VisitScotland has revealed that the unpredictable Scottish weather is being embraced by visitors who are undeterred by the cold, wet climate.

Statistics show that between 2010 and 2014, negative weather had little bearing on domestic holiday tourist trip patterns with an increase in annual rainfall (40%) coinciding with an increase in visitors (10%) and average spend (13%).

Interestingly, 5% of visitors (mostly from the European market) indicated that the climate and weather was the main attractor for visiting Scotland.

The findings come as the country prepares for a May Day Bank Weekend forecast predicting unusual weather for the time of year, including snowfall across parts of Scotland.

Colder than average weather has led to an extended ski season in Scotland with resorts such as Cairngorm Mountain to remain open into May.

The VisitScotland research also reveals that millennials in particular appear unfazed by the weather with 1.3 million day visits by 25-34yr olds during July 2015 to undertake outdoor activities such as walking, cycling, golf and days out, despite an increase in rainfall and decrease in sunshine hours.

Nine out of ten (87%) visitors agreed that Scotland offers enough to do in all weather conditions and many expressed an opinion that tourists do not come to Scotland for the weather, but for the landscape, history, heritage, myths and legends.

Malcolm Roughead, chief executive of VisitScotland, said: “The weather is of little consequence to our visitors.

Stormy clouds circling over our mountainous regions can be just as breathtaking to the eye as blue skies and with such a plethora of activities for all weathers across the country, Scotland truly is a year-round destination.”


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