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Walking tall

Press Release   •   May 04, 2016 11:57 BST

A unique walking tour that takes in the sights, sounds, tastes and tipples of Scotland’s capital has received VisitScotland’s highest accolade for quality.

Eat Walk Edinburgh, which started life in 2011 by Alan Chalmers, has been awarded 5 stars under the national tourism organisation’s Quality Assurance scheme.

The idea for the tour company came about in 2009 after a trip to the USA where Alan sampled a walking tour for the first time. It wasn’t until two years later, after the former hotel manager took redundancy from his old job, that he decided to set up walking tours himself in Edinburgh.

Eat Walk Edinburgh boasts two year-round tours, the Canongate Tour and the Old & New Town Tour, which are available in five languages (English, German, French, Spanish and Italian). Each tour lasts up to 3.5 hours long and visits five locations tasting locally sourced food with three stops also having drink tastings. As visitors journey between each venue the guide talks about the history of the city.

The VisitScotland five star grading ensures that all areas of the attraction have an exceptional level of quality, from the strength of the website to the route and presentation. During the visit a number of criteria were graded by the VisitScotland’s Quality and Tourism Advisor including the appearance and knowledge of staff, and presentation of the tour. Eat Walk Edinburgh was rated five stars (exceptional) for each section.

Alan Chalmers, owner of Eat Walk Edinburgh, said:

We at Eat walk Edinburgh are very proud to receive a five star rating by VisitScotland but fully realise this is in due in no small part to the superb venues we visit on the tour showcasing great Scottish food and drink. Our tour only scratches the surface of the great bars and restaurants Edinburgh has to offer.

Manuela Calchini, Regional Director at VisitScotland, said:

“We are delighted to see Eat Walk Edinburgh receive our highest accolade for quality which will only enhance its reputation to visitors by reassuring them of the high standards it sets itself. The tours offer a unique and real taste of Scotland’s capital – combining the traditional exploration of the city’s breath-taking history and architecture with the culinary delights of Scotland’s natural larder – which is proving to be a recipe for success with domestic and international visitors alike.

“Our Quality Assurance scheme is world-leading and provides a trusted, independent and impartial source of information for visitors. It is about much more than just a star rating – it is about the entire visitor experience and investing in the business to make it as economically sustainable, and profitable, as it can be."

For more on Eat Walk Edinburgh, go to www.eatwalkedinburgh.co.uk

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Notes to Editors

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  • 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 seven overarching strategies:
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    5. Quality and Sustainability: we will provide support and advice to businesses, with the goal of improving the quality and sustainability of the tourism sector in Scotland. We will provide quality assurance to visitors through our Quality Schemes
    6. Inclusive Tourism: we will strive to make tourism in Scotland inclusive and available to all
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    Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design 2016

  • 2016 will shine a spotlight on Scotland’s achievements in innovation, architecture and design through a wide-ranging, variety of new and existing activity.
  • The Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design begins on 1 January 2016 and ends on 31 December 2016 and will build on the momentum generated by the 2015 Year of Food and Drink as well as previous years including Homecoming Scotland 2014, the Year of Creative and the Year of Natural.
  • Through a series of exciting events and activity, the year will showcase Scotland’s position as an “innovation nation”, its outstanding built heritage, and its thriving, internationally acclaimed creative industries sector.
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ERDF.