A Skye daredevil’s film is inspiring scores of cyclists to bring their bikes to Scotland.
Danny MacAskill’s film The Ridge, which shows him mountain biking on the cliff edges of the Cuillins, has been viewed more than 26million times on YouTube – and has now been attributed to a huge rise in visitor bookings.
Skye Adventure, the company which provided its extensive knowledge and experience of mountain guiding in the Cuillins, has seen a 20% rise in bookings since the video was released.
VisitScotland partly funded the film, and said that along with major cycling events next year – such as the Fort William Mountain Bike World Cup and TweedLove Bike Festival – the profile of cycling in Scotland is being raised.
Malcolm Roughead, chief executive of VisitScotland, said: “Scotland has a global reputation for cycling and in the UK alone it is estimated that there are 11million people who own a mountain bike. From cycling tours around the incredible Highlands to mountain biking in the Scottish Borders and Dumfries and Galloway, there is a huge opportunity for Scottish tourism.
“The Ridge took cycling in Skye to a global audience, and with our endless miles of forest tracks, cycle trails, country paths and top-quality facilities, we need to continue to show the world why Scotland is the place to jump on a bike.”
Matt Barratt, a mountain guide at Skye Adventure, said: “The Ridge really showed just how amazing the scenery in the Highlands is, and whatever level of outdoor adventure you are after, whether it’s out riding mountains like Danny or something a bit closer to the ground, you’ll find it in Scotland.”
VisitScotland research showed that domestic visitors to Scotland, who take part in mountain biking or cycling, spend £109million each year.