Millions of visitors flock to Scotland's tourist attractions

Scotland enjoyed a bumper year for tourism, with seven sites welcoming over a million visitors.

Popular: Urquhart Castle is an iconic tourist attraction of Scotland's.
Popular: Urquhart Castle is an iconic tourist attraction of Scotland's. © STV

Seven of Scotland's major tourist attractions welcomed over one million visitors last year, according to new research.

Edinburgh Castle topped the list with a total of 1,568,508 guests in 2015, while it was the only paid-for attraction to appear on the list.

The National Museum of Scotland in Edinburgh came out on top of the free attractions, clocking up 1,567,310 visitors over the course of the year.

The capital proved to be a source of great interest for visitors, also boasting the Scottish National Gallery and St Giles' Cathedral to give it four out of the seven most popular attractions in 2015.

Top pick: Edinburgh Castle was Scotland's number one attraction last year.
Top pick: Edinburgh Castle was Scotland's number one attraction last year.

Other well-trodden destinations included Glasgow's Riverside Museum and Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, with Loch Lomond Shores in Balloch completing the list of sights to pass the one million mark.

The study, compiled by Glasgow Caledonian University, found that the top 10 attractions enjoyed a 5% increase in visitors last year, even after a strong previous year for tourism in Scotland, which saw it host the 2014 Commonwealth Games and Ryder Cup.

The Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, the Famous Blacksmiths Shop in Gretna Green, the Kelpies horse head sculptures and the Falkirk Wheel were also in the top 10 free attractions - all welcoming more than 600,000 people.

Busy: Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum was another solid favourite for visitors.
Busy: Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum was another solid favourite for visitors.

Popular sites demanding an entry fee included Edinburgh Zoo, Edinburgh Bus Tours and Stirling Castle, with Glasgow Science Centre and Urquhart Castle in Drumnadrochit also making the top ten.

The Royal Yacht Britannia and the Scotch Whisky Experience, both in Edinburgh, the Scottish Seabird Centre in North Berwick and Culzean Castle and Country Park in Ayrshire completed the top 10 paid-for list.

Professor John Lennon, director of the GCU's Moffat Centre for Travel and Tourism Business Development, said: "Scotland is clearly punching above its weight in visitor attraction performance.

"It is a testament to the range and appeal of Scotland's paid and unpaid offer that we continue to attract international and domestic tourists as well as local visitors to our visitor attractions."

One account. All of STV.

This field is required. That doesn't look like a valid e-mail format, please check. That e-mail's already in our system. Please try again.
ShowHide
Forgot password?
This field is required. At least 6 characters please. Did you enter your details correctly?
If you've forgotten your details then use the 'Forgot password?' link.
Need to reset your password?

We'll send a link to reset your password to

We've sent you details on how to reset your password

Please check your email and follow the instructions.

Forgotten your email address?

Have you forgotten the email address that you previously joined with? Don't worry, by emailing enquiries@stv.tv we can help.

One account. All of STV.

This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
At least 6 characters please
ShowHide
This field is required. At least 6 characters please.
You have to be 16 or over to join
This field is required. This doesn't appear to be a valid date
Type your full postcode and select your address This field is required. It doesn't look like you've entered a valid postcode. Can't find your address? Confirm the details you've given us are correct by clicking here

By continuing you agree to our Terms of Use, including our Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy. Any issues contact us.

Upload Profile Picture

Please make sure your image is under 2mb in size and a valid JPG, PNG or GIF.

Are you sure?

Unfortunately, you'll be unable to access our premium content. We’ll be sorry to see you go, but if you change your mind you can rejoin us at any time.

Please verify your STV account

Please verify your STV account using the email we sent you. If you have lost the email, we can send you another one, just click the button below.

Thanks

We've sent you a new verification email.
Please check your email and follow the instructions to verify your account.

Welcome to STV
Thanks for joining us.

Oops!

Sorry, you must be at least 12 years old to place a vote for your Real Hero.

Please review our Voting Terms of Use for more information.

Oops!

Sorry! It seems that you are using a browser that is incompatible with our voting service.

To register your vote please copy the below URL in to your regular mobile browser. We recommend Google Chrome, or Safari.

http://shows.stv.tv/real-heroes/voting

Oops!

Sorry, you seem to have already voted in this category.

Thanks for voting

Now share your vote with friends on your social network

Share on twitter Share on facebook

Cast your vote

Please register or sign in to continue.

Cast your vote

This field is required. This doesn't appear to be a valid date

Cast your vote

Please fill out this form to cast your vote. As you are under 16 years old you will not create an STV account. Why do we need these details?

This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. That doesn't look like a valid e-mail format, please check.
Location This field is required.
Parental Consent This field is required.

That's you. All that's left is to click the 'Submit Vote' button below. By doing so, you confirm that you and your parent or guardian have read and accept our Voting Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Cookie policy, and that the details you have entered are correct. We'll look after them as carefully as if they were our own.