In 2016, adventure tourism's global value was already estimated to be a staggering $444.85bn.
And with this figure projected to climb to $1,335bn in 2023, investing in this lucrative sector is already appealing to hospitality and leisure companies all over the world.
Mountain bike tourists play a vital part in these figures. In 2015, in Scotland alone, MTB visitors contributed £105m to the Scottish economy.
The time is right for Scottish businesses to start taking advantage of this opportunity. By enhancing the experience of national and international mountain bike visitors and giving them a world-class welcome, we'll ensure that they want to stay longer and return for more adventures.
Scotland is already a popular choice for tourists for many reasons. By building on its strengths, we believe Scotland can be positioned as the first-choice destination for both national and international mountain bike tourists.
As part of a more comprehensive strategy for developing mountain biking in Scotland, two premier mountain biking destinations - one at either end of the country - will act as a powerful draw. This will create destinations as compelling as Hawaii for surfers or the Alps for skiers and snowboarders.
To the North, Fort William & Lochaber is a favoured mountain bike destination that has hosted the UCI Downhill World Cup since 2002. To the South, the Tweed Valley’s new trail developments and combined Bike Park/Innovation Hub provides a strategic location close to Scotland’s busiest airport in Edinburgh.
By continuing to invest in world-class infrastructure and trails within these areas, these two key destinations can provide the necessary gateways for mountain bike tourists to explore other destinations all over Scotland - resulting in extended stays and return visits.
The interest and activity generated by these two ‘premier destinations’ will cascade down to four ‘priority destinations’ - Dumfries & Galloway, Perthshire, Cairngorms, and the North of Scotland - as well as two ‘emerging destinations’ - Glasgow/Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park and Aberdeenshire.