Dunrobin Castle - ancestral home of the Clan Sutherland
Dunrobin Castle - ancestral home of the Clan Sutherland
Kilchurn Castle, Loch Awe
Kilchurn Castle, Loch Awe
Scotland is a great place to explore by cycle on trails and coastal paths
Scotland is a great place to explore by cycle on trails and coastal paths
Ardvreck Castle and Loch Assynt in Sutherland, Highlands of Scotland
Ardvreck Castle and Loch Assynt in Sutherland, Highlands of Scotland
The banks of Loch Lomond - Britain's largest stretch of inland water
The banks of Loch Lomond - Britain's largest stretch of inland water
Strathisla Distillery in Keith, Grampian Highlands
Strathisla Distillery in Keith, Grampian Highlands
Portree Harbour, Isle of Skye
Portree Harbour, Isle of Skye
Gleneagles Golf Course
Gleneagles Golf Course
Fantastic rivers and lochs await for you to try your hand at fishing
Fantastic rivers and lochs await for you to try your hand at fishing
Scotland's rich musicial tradition
Scotland's rich musicial tradition
The Northern Isles are home to the world-famous Shetland pony
The Northern Isles are home to the world-famous Shetland pony
Ring of Brodgar in Orkney
Ring of Brodgar in Orkney
Kayaks at North Beach, Little Bernera, Isle of Lewis, Stornoway
Kayaks at North Beach, Little Bernera, Isle of Lewis, Stornoway
Dolphin pond in magnificent mountainside setting of Benmore Botanic Gardens
Dolphin pond in magnificent mountainside setting of Benmore Botanic Gardens
Piper at Castle of Mey in Thurso, Caithness
Piper at Castle of Mey in Thurso, Caithness
Balmoral Castle, Royal Deeside, Aberdeen
Balmoral Castle, Royal Deeside, Aberdeen
Kelvingrove Art Gallery & Museum, Glasgow
Kelvingrove Art Gallery & Museum, Glasgow
Ben Nevis, Fort William
Ben Nevis, Fort William
Oban, Argyll & Bute
Oban, Argyll & Bute
Edinburgh Castle
Edinburgh Castle

Promoting Scotland's Ports as gateway for more visitors

Major events add to appeal in record year

Scotland’s major tourism events in 2014 are being promoted as part of an international programme to bring more cruise passengers to ports around the country in what is expected to be a record year for visitors arriving by sea.

Cruise Scotland’s three-month postcard campaign aimed at the industry by post and electronically has raised awareness of its return to the USA next week for the Cruise Shipping Miami exhibition and highlighted this year’s Homecoming Scotland, Ryder Cup and Commonwealth Games among the many attractions.

With the season getting underway early, around 450 vessels are scheduled, with approximately 390,000 passengers, the highest number yet, expected by autumn. Cruise tourism is estimated to have been worth almost £50 million to Scotland in 2013.

Cruise Scotland Chairman, Victor Sandison, said: “The cruise industry is an exciting growth sector, with tremendous potential for Scotland. But it is a highly-competitive, international business requiring sustained promotion and the iconic events this summer add extra pulling-power.

“Building on increased traffic in recent years, we are committed to the ongoing development of markets and our quality products to ensure passenger numbers continue to increase.”

The marketing organisation will be exhibiting on stand 430 at Cruise Shipping Miami, the industry’s leading event, from 10-13 March. The programme also includes:

• A “Customise your Brochure” facility has been added to the website to allow users to create online PDF brochures with details of particular destinations of interest.

• A new “Find a Cruise” page aimed at potential visitors from the USA features an indicative more than 30 operators with vessels calling at Scottish ports this year.

• Approaches have been made to operators to seek participation in familiarisation visits to increase their appreciation of what Scotland offers cruise visitors.

• Cruise Scotland will exhibit at Seatrade Med in Barcelona in September.

• Recruitment of members is ongoing.

The association was established in 2009 to promote and market Scotland as a first-class cruise destination to operators and work on behalf of members on relevant issues. It now has 18 full members, including 16 ports and two major ground handlers, and three associate members.