The V&A in Dundee has beaten Loch Ness in a countdown of Scotland’s top visitor attractions and experiences.
According to a study by travel guide giant Lonely Planet, the new Tayside attraction also scored higher than famous UK landmarks including Stirling Castle, Blackpool Pleasure Beach and the Angel of the North.
The list was compiled by Lonely Planet staff and 20 leading figures from Britain’s travel industry, and voted for by members of the public.
The results, published on Tuesday as the Ultimate United Kingdom Travelist, puts the Edinburgh Festival Fringe at the number one spot.
At 199, the V&A in Dundee is the only attraction from Tayside in the top 200. Meanwhile, the original Victoria and Albert Museum in London doesn’t make the top 500.
The Cairngorms National Park is placed at 43, while the Braemar Gathering appears at 274.
Elsewhere, visitors are urged to fish for salmon on the River Tay (number 335) and to “sink a hole-in-one at Scotland’s ancient St Andrews” at 338.
Scone Palace – “Feel the spirit of Scotland’s founding fathers” – ranks at 374, followed by Glamis Castle, the Enchanted Forest at Pitlochry and Blair Castle.
In total there are 68 Scottish places on the list. VisitScotland Chief Executive Malcolm Roughead said: “Scotland is home to many amazing experiences, so it’s no surprise they feature prominently.
“They are year-round activities that traverse the length and breadth of the country, and we hope the guide will prove a catalyst for visitors to get out and explore the regions.”
Ian Sim, chairman of the Enchanted Forest Community Trust, said: “It’s not every day you get recognition from one of the world’s most prestigious travel media companies, so needless to say we are incredibly proud of this feature.
“We have increasing numbers of international visitors attending the event every year and this will only serve to extend the reach of the Enchanted Forest to new visitors for years to come.”
Julia Sim, spokeswoman for Blair Castle and Gardens added: “We are absolutely delighted to be included.”
List of Courier country attractions on the Lonely Planet guide:
- Spend a night on ice in Cairngorms National Park
- Fly-fish a salmon on the River Tay
- Sink a hole-in-one at Scotland’s ancient St Andrews
- Be dazzled by design at the V&A
- Feel the spirit of Scotland’s founding fathers at Scone
- Hobnob with royalty in Glamis Castle’s rose-tinted turrets
- Watch a woodland come alive at Perthshire’s Enchanted Forest
- Face a private army at redoubtable Blair Castle, Perthshire