08 Feb 2018
Two of Glasgow’s most popular tourist attractions have reached record levels of attendance, with over one million people visiting each in 2017.
The Riverside Museum and Kelvingrove Art Gallery were named among several Scottish destinations that welcomed over a million through their doors last year.
The annual survey of more than 700 of the country’s paid and free attractions revealed tourism across Scotland was up by five per cent last year.
Industry experts at Glasgow Caledonian University have put part of the rise in popularity down to the poor currency of the UK, as well as fewer Britons deciding against holidaying abroad, taking a “staycation” instead.
Professor John Lennon said: “Two Scottish visitor attractions welcoming more than two million visitors for the first time is a sure sign of the enduring appeal and strength of the sector.
“As a destination, Scotland continues to benefit from the lower value of sterling against the euro and the US dollar, ensuring tourists receive value for money as well as a high-quality experience. Demand has been further buoyed by a resurgent domestic ‘stay-cation’ market as Britain faces economic uncertainty and the reduced purchasing power of sterling.”
The other free listed attractions included the Scottish National Gallery and Loch Lomond Shores, while the top paid attractions also featured Edinburgh Castle, the National Museum of Scotland, Stirling Castle, Edinburgh Zoo, Urquhart Castle near Inverness, and the Glenfinnan Monument in Lochaber.
Malcolm Roughead, VisitScotland chief executive, said the benefits of tourism to Scotland are integral. He said: “It’s also important to remember the benefits these visitors bring. Tourism is more than a holiday experience – it is integral to sustaining communities across Scotland by generating income, creating jobs and stimulating social change.”