Cumbria is scoring more “likes” than ever from overseas visitors now preferring scenery to cities, according to an Ambleside tourism business owner.
Henry Wild says Skelwith Fold caravan park has this year welcomed an increase in families from Europe and beyond. Especially from Australia, the USA and South Africa.
He believes that Britain’s natural heritage is now providing, for many, an attractive alternative to the urban landscapes of traditionally popular cities such as London, Edinburgh and Oxford.
Evidence for this, suggests Henry, is seen in the rise of foreign visitors who hire motorhomes instead of cars for their Lake District holiday.
Now his park has produced a professional video which is aimed at international markets. This is now being promoted overseas via his business’s website.
It shows not just Skelwith Fold, but also tantalising glimpses of the open Cumbrian countryside. This provides a striking contrast with snarled-up cities and towns.
“There was a great continental atmosphere on our park this year, and a lot of this was down to younger families from abroad opting for a hired motorhome,” said Henry.
“Many said that a motorhome provided a much more relaxed holiday experience compared with renting a car and staying at hotels often in or near urban areas.
“Their home-on-wheels means they can wake up each morning in glorious natural surroundings. This also makes a much more exciting prospect for children,” he added.
Sales of freshly-baked croissants, baguettes and espresso-style coffees from the park shop have increased this year, Henry points out, and guests enjoyed a more al-fresco lifestyle:
“Our Australian guests especially were keen on outdoor cooking and eating, and it was noticeable how often British and overseas families joined forces for drinks and meals.
“There is no doubt that Cumbria is becoming more cosmopolitan. Our new video intentionally shows the features of a stay here which overseas visitors enjoy.
“The theme is all about escape, discovery and the freedom to enjoy your own style of holiday – in contrast to the rather one-dimensional experience of cities.
“Within just days of being posted on the Skelwith Fold website this autumn, our video was receiving hits from around the world,” added Henry.
The 130-acre wooded park, just outside Ambleside, was once again a winner this year of the David Bellamy Conservation Award at its top gold level.