Britain is recognised as a world class destination for culture and heritage and these aspects of the British holiday offer are repeatedly identified as major draws for overseas visitors in our research.
From 22 May we will be working to update all of the data and documents on this page following the Office of National Statistics (ONS) revision of the International Passenger Survey (IPS) data for 2009-2018 and the released detailed 2019 data. Please be patient as we update these pages or contact the VisitBritain research team if you have any questions- VB/VEResearch@visitbritain.org. Thank you.
The figures speak for themselves. Through our sponsorship of specific questions in the International Passenger Survey (IPS) sightseeing famous monuments, visiting our museums and art galleries and our castles and historic houses are all within the top seven activites undertaken by international visitors.
Indeed, through the Anholt Nations Brand Index (NBI) we have some insight into the perceptions of the UK's culture and heritage amongst respondents in 20 countries around the world. The NBI consistently ranks the UK's strengths in history and cultre attributes including contemporary culture, historic buildings and cultural heritage. More information on the perceptions of the UK head to our image overseas image page.
To build on these results, in 2014, we conducted reserach into understanding the role of culture and heritage (PDF, 1.33MB). This research conducted amongst holiday-makers from Germany, France and the USA showed visitors sought opportunites to relax and destinations offering lots to see and do. Other elements considered important in the holiday mix were famous places (buildings and attractions) and expectiations of a friendly welcome from the locals. Along with the specfic culture and heritage attractions visitors were also seeking to connect and interact with culture and heritage, specifically:
|Emotional Impact||Different Experiences||Immersion|
|To be moved and inspired||Spiritually enriched||Share with the 'natives'|
|Astonished and amazed||Intellectually nourished||Not just a spectator|
|Awed and intrigued||Surprised, stretched||Genuine, authentic experiences|
|To feel welcome||Sense of discovering new places and things|
Download our commentary on the key findings (PDF, 2.37MB) from the study to gain a better understanding of the role of culture and heritage in holidays. Published December 2014.
During 2015, VisitBritain explored how best to leverage British Culture in Brazil, China and Italy. Supporting previous research Britain’s built culture ranks highly with opportunities to turn up communications around ‘living the feeling’. In this report we have suggested 10 top tips for marketing in these markets:
You can download the full report and all 10 top tips here (PDF, 3.14MB). Published January 2016.