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Cumbria Tourism recently played host to a special visit organised in conjunction with VisitBritain and VisitEngland. Senior representatives from the national tourism organisations brought with them three of the world’s top travel and tourism VIPs. The visiting dignitaries who were in the UK for only four days included; Kazuyoshi Hasegawa, the Secretary General of the Japan Association of Travel Agents, and from Brazil, the heads of several major tour operators; Eloi D’Avila de Oliveira, the President of Flytour and Plinio Nascimento, the owner of Nascimento Turismo, who were particularly interested in seeing the Lakes as part of new visitor itineraries for their customers who want to travel beyond London in future years.
The visit gave Cumbria Tourism bosses the opportunity to showcase some of Cumbria’s new and established attractions. The party started a busy day long itinerary in the Eden Valley, taking in Lowther Castle & Gardens, followed by a specially laid on horse drawn carriage transfer through Lowther Park, kindly driven by Barnaby Bowman, international pairs carriage driving British team member, who to took the party to Askham Hall, where the guests then met with Charles and Juno Lowther to hear about their plans for the Hall and to visit the newly opened café, where they had lunch, before being escorted to Ullswater to take in the drama of the lake and enjoy a beautiful cruise to Glenridding with Ullswater Steamers.
Later in the afternoon the party travelled to Bowness to visit to the ever popular World of Beatrix Potter, Bowness, a particular favourite with visitors from Japan. Stopping off at the Mason’s Arms, Strawberry Bank, to sample some local ales before rounding off a perfect day with dinner at the award winning Lakeside Hotel, Newby Bridge, where the guests were treated to a five course taster dining experience designed to showcase Cumbria’s finest locally sourced produce including; locally caught crab and Cumbrian salt marsh lamb.
Keith Beecham, Visit Britain’s Overseas Network Director said: ‘’the visit was truly inspirational, with perfect blend of new and established attractions. The continuing innovation and investment in quality is clearly evident in Cumbria, an important factor in this fiercely competitive global market in which we operate. Our overseas guests were very impressed and I have no doubt that the memorable horse and carriage ride at Lowther Castle will stay with them for a very long time. All of them want to do business with Cumbria, which is very encouraging for Cumbria’s visitor economy.’’
Ian Stephens, Managing Director at Cumbria Tourism said: ‘’Hosting and inspiring the travel trade and members of the media is a vitally important role that Cumbria Tourism provides, we’ve helped to organise over 70 such trips since April. We are proud to show off our iconic landscapes and fabulous visitor offer which extends to all parts of the County.
He added: ‘’Cumbria Tourism’s members play a vital part in assisting with these visits and are extremely generous with their time and hospitality, making sure that the whole experience is memorable for all concerned. Tourism businesses can be rest assured that Cumbria Tourism will continue to work closely with VisitBritain and VisitEngland to promote The Lake District, Cumbria, to both established and emerging markets, therefore helping to ensure that Cumbria continues to attract visitors for future years.’’