From adventure tourism and new visitor attractions; to the UK City of Culture Bid and innovative historic projects, Perthshire’s history and heritage took centre stage at a top regional tourism conference this week.
Held at Birnam Arts on Wednesday 22 March, Perthshire Talks Tourism 2017, which was attended by representatives from approximately 100 businesses, looked at how the region could use its rich past to help attract visitors in the future.
The annual event was delivered by the Perthshire Tourism Partnership, Perth & Kinross Council and VisitScotland.
Recent figures show that in 2015 almost a third of visitors cited ‘history and culture’ as a key motivator for their trip. In keeping with the Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology 2017, the conference was split into four sessions; investing in our history, maximising our natural heritage, bringing the past to life and unearthing the past.
Participants in the event heard from Pitlochry Dam Visitor Centre, the Snow Roads Scenic Routes, the Scottish Crannog Centre, Loch Tay Safaris, Highland Fling Bungee, the Mary Queen of Scots Festival, Perth Charterhouse Project, Perth & Kinross Archaeology Year and the Chief Executive of Culture PK leading the UK City of Culture bid.
With a growing reputation for adventure tourism, Piotr Gudan, Co-Founder of Broon Coo Adventures was also among the speakers and revealed why he believes the region should use its natural assets to attract visitors.
Piotr said: “We are blessed in Perthshire to have some of the most stunning scenery in the country. Our natural heritage is among the top reason people visit Scotland so it makes perfect sense that we use this as one of Perthshire’s selling points. I believe by using our natural heritage we can position the region as among the top adventure tourism sites in the country.”
VisitScotland Regional Director Jim Clarkson said: “Perthshire has a strong reputation for its fascinating historic attractions, breathtaking scenery and unique wildlife.
“The Perthshire Talks Tourism event was the perfect setting for businesses to come together and look at how we can use Perthshire’s strengths to attract more visitors.
“We are entering an exciting time for local tourism thanks to major investments such as the Pitlochry Dam Visitor Centre, Perth Theatre and the Perth Museum and Art Gallery redevelopments.
“Tourism is more than a holiday experience; it creates jobs and sustains communities in every corner of Perthshire all year round.”
David Smythe, Chairman of Perthshire Tourism Partnership, said: “Perthshire Talks Tourism is a chance to bring together those working on the frontline of tourism in the region. It offers a great opportunity to find out about what is happening across Perthshire, as well as share advice, experience and examples of best practice with other tourism professionals. Perthshire has so much to offer but we need to continue working together as an industry and use tourism treasures, such as our history and heritage, to fulfil our potential for visitors.”
For more information: www.visitscotland.org