Edinburgh Uncovered

Press release   •   Apr 23, 2019 09:35 BST

A digital campaign profiling Edinburgh as a top youth tourism destination has reached almost five million people across the world.

#UncoverEdinburgh, which received a £40,000 Growth Fund award from VisitScotland, had a total reach of 4.9 million across various social channels, generating over a million engagements.

Led by Youth Travel Edinburgh and supported by the Edinburgh Tourism Action Group and Marketing Edinburgh, the partnership initiative encouraged visitors aged 18-26 from key European markets to come to Scotland’s Capital on a year-round basis by pairing an Edinburgh influencer with another with similar special interests from cities like Barcelona, Paris and Amsterdam.

Using Scotland’s 2018 Year of Young People (YOYP) as a platform, the year-long campaign brought ten pairs of influencers to Edinburgh who collectively created over 200 pieces of content. Highlights included architect and renowned photographer Nicanor Garcia’s Instagram story which had an organic reach of over 200k, and a video from parkour athletes Alex Schauer and Robert Griffith which reached over 431k people and received 132k engagements.

The campaign brought together Edinburgh’s tourism industry and digital assets highlighting Edinburgh’s tourism offering for young people were created for businesses to use on social media. 45 GIFs were made and downloaded by 74 different businesses.

The campaign showcased the entire city. Music lovers were filmed in a recording studio in Leith, while a gaming/parkour video showed athletes race from South Queensferry and Leith to the Mercat Cross.

The campaign was Edinburgh’s first ever destination-led campaign aimed at young visitors. Youth travel is the fastest growing segment of global tourism and Edinburgh is second only to London for young visitors to the UK.

By promoting Edinburgh as a year-round destination, the campaign supported the Edinburgh 2020 Tourism Strategy, which calls for growth in the visitor economy of 3% per annum and prioritises stimulating this growth in the October to March period.

Pete Duncan, Chair of Youth Travel Edinburgh, said: “We wanted a very different campaign to present specific aspects of Edinburgh to the growing youth market – a target audience that lives and breathes social media. We chose Instagrammers, bloggers and YouTubers with a niche following in interests like vintage fashion, music, Harry Potter and parkour. Both hosts and guests loved the city – as well as the direct interest from their followers during 2018, we’ve created long term advocates for the capital!”

Paula Ward, VisitScotland Regional Leadership Director, said: “#UncoverEdinburgh has been a huge success in showcasing Edinburgh to visitors across the world as a top, year-round destination for young people. Digital partnership initiatives like this are what VisitScotland’s Growth Fund is all about. We want to champion collaboration, spearhead digital innovation and make sure every part of Scotland makes the most of its remarkable tourism offering and understands its ripple effect of success, well-being and prosperity.”

YOYP 2018 was the most recent of the Scottish Government’s series of themed years, following the Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology 2017. Planning is already underway for the Year of Coasts and Waters 2020, a year-long programme of events and activities which will shine a spotlight on the impact our waters have on our country.

Youth Travel Edinburgh is a 100+ strong business group for tour operators in the tourism sector in Edinburgh with a particular interest in the youth market. It is constituted, chaired by Pete Duncan of Radical Travel and represented on the Edinburgh Tourism Action Group. #UncoverEdinburgh was their first marketing campaign.

The VisitScotland Growth Fund supports collaborative tourism marketing projects which focus on growth and ensure that visitors experience the best of Scotland. To be eligible for a Growth Fund award, applicants must place a strong emphasis on digital marketing and the creation of digital content assets.

To learn more about #UncoverEdinburgh, the ten pairings, and access all the content created, go to

For more information about VisitScotland Growth Fund go to


Notes to Editors

  • Follow us on twitter: @visitscotnews
  • VisitScotland is Scotland’s national tourism organisation. Its core purpose is to maximise the economic benefit of tourism to Scotland.
  • The organisation’s core objective is to contribute to the Tourism 2020 Strategy ambition of growing tourism revenues by £1 billion by 2020.
  • This will be supported by five overarching strategies: Marketing, Events, Quality and Sustainability, Inclusive Tourism, International Engagement.
  • The organisation employs 700 people and has offices and VisitScotland Information Centres across Scotland.
  • Spending by tourists in Scotland generates around £12 billion of economic activity in the wider Scottish supply chain and contributes around £6 billion to Scottish GDP (in basic prices). This represents about 5% of total Scottish GDP
  • For VisitScotland’s press releases go to, tourism statistics and frequently asked questions go to
  • Where possible, a Gaelic speaker will be made available for broadcast interviews on request (Far an tèid iarraidh, agus far am bheil sin nar comas, bruidhinnidh neach le Gàidhlig aig agallamh)
  • For holiday information on Scotland go to
  • For information about business tourism in Scotland go to

Scotland’s Themed Years

  • Following an industry consultation, the Themed Years will now take place every second year to enable more time for planning and opportunities for collaboration.
  • 2020 has been designated as a year in which Scotland’s Coasts and Waters will be showcased and celebrated with a programme of activity designed to support the nation’s tourism and events sectors.
  • The year, led by VisitScotland will sustain and build upon the momentum of Scotland’s preceding Themed Years to spotlight, celebrate and promote opportunities to experience and enjoy Scotland’s unrivalled Coasts and Waters, encouraging responsible engagement and participation from the people of Scotland and our visitors.
  • A year-long programme of events, activities and ideas will shine a spotlight on the impact our waters have had on Scotland, from the formation of beautiful natural features to the creation of our national drink – whisky.
  • Join the conversation using #YCW2020
  • 2022 will be the Year of Scotland’s Stories - a celebration of our rich literature, film, oral traditions and myths and legends.

About VisitScotland Growth Funding

The VisitScotland Growth Fund supports collaborative tourism marketing projects which focus on growth and ensure that visitors experience why Scotland Is Now. To be eligible for a Growth Fund award, applicants must place a strong emphasis on digital marketing and the creation of digital content assets. They are also encouraged to align themselves with Scotland’s themed years, including the Year of Coasts and Waters