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Thursday 31 October 2019

Following Lonely Planet's high ranking for England in its top ten countries to visit, Dr Bailey Ashton Adie explores what this means for the rest of the UK's tourism. 

Lonely Planet recently named England as number two in its top ten countries to visit in 2020, behind Bhutan. The travel website left no doubt that it is the English coastline that is the star attraction, thanks in no small part to the development of the England Coastal Path, which is due for completion in 2020 and will be around 2,975 miles long – the longest trail of its type in the world.

Good news, then, for English tourism marketing. Lonely Planet’s reach includes more than 12.5m social media followers and 13m site visits per month, in addition to all the extra media coverage that it’s top ten will have garnered. The large digital footprint will no doubt help in attracting international visitors – according to VisitBritain, a third of international tourists to Britain use search engine results when researching where to go on holiday.

This increased level of free marketing will hopefully bolster the tourism industry in many coastal towns – especially smaller, less well-known places which will benefit from being part of the path. This is important as many of these communities have suffered from the slow decline of seaside tourism in the UK.

Read Dr Bailey Ashton Adie's article in full on The Conversation