Inclusive Tourism

Inclusive Tourism

At VisitAberdeenshire, we recognise inclusive tourism and accessibility as key factors that underpin a successful tourism sector. Required by legislation, an ageing population and capturing the considerable holiday spend of people with disabilities – as well as simply being the right thing to do - accessibility is an important consideration to improve the visitor experience and attract new audiences.

According to 56 Degree Insight's Scottish Tourism Index – Spring 2023:

  • There is real demand for domestic holidays amongst Scots with impairments and accessibility needs

  • One of the barriers identified is a lack of information

The Tourism Development team deliver a pioneering programme designed to support local tourism and hospitality businesses to remove barriers to an enjoyable visit and build confidence in providing inclusive experiences and safe spaces for all.

Workshops and webinars

As part of our Tourism Development Programme, we deliver a series of workshops and webinars designed to help you develop your business, enhance your offering and attract more customers. 

Watch our past webinar - The Benefits of Inclusive Tourism for Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire

Upcoming sessions

Watch this space for sessions coming up in 2024


VisitScotland - Inclusive Tourism Guidance

VisitScotland is dedicated to providing industry guidance on Responsible Tourism and helping businesses to unlock the potential of Inclusive Tourism. Through partnerships and commissioned research, their Inclusive Tourism Toolkit offers tips on improving your customer experience, enhancing your information provision plus links to useful resources. You will also find a step by step guide to creating an Access Guide for your business.

Click here for VisitScotland's Inclusive Tourism Toolkit

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Case studies - celebrating inclusive and accessible businesses

In this section, we will share good practice examples from local businesses who are committed to providing their customers an inclusive experience. 

The 2023 Aberdeen City and Shire Thistle Awards included an inclusive tourism category and it highlighted the quality and care already in the region as we work towards being a leading destination for accessibility and inclusive experiences. We have highlighted the work of the three finalists below.

Crathie Opportunity Holidays

The winner of the Inclusive Tourism award at the Aberdeen City and Shire Thistle Awards, offers self-catering accommodation designed with specialist facilities to cater to disabled guests and their families. Care is taken to ensure guests make the most out of their stay including the creation of an accessibility guide to the North-east, enhancing the customer experience and encouraging longer stays in the region. Crathie Opportunity Holidays work with volunteers in the community to continue to improve on the experience they offer. 

You can view their full access guide on AccessAble here.

Dalriada Luxury Self-Catering Lodges

Award finalist, Dalriada Luxury Self-Catering Lodges offers accommodation with coastal views and relaxing countryside surroundings. The purpose built lodges were designed with accessibility in mind with one level accommodation with wide doorways. Committed to providing an inclusive experience, Dalriada take care to adapt lodges where possible to suit the evolving needs of their guests whether that is removing items such as rugs for safe access or distracting visual elements to prevent overstimulation. To help guests book the right stay for them, a 360 degree tour and inclusive information provision on their website ensures there are no surprises on arrival.

You can view their full access guide on AccessAble here.

Aberdeen Archives, Gallery & Museums

Finalist in the inclusive tourism category in the Aberdeen City and Shire Thistle Awards, this visitor attraction is committed to sharing its treasured collection with all visitors. Aberdeen Art Gallery has created an inclusive and accessible space through the provision of a comprehensive access guide, and a visual guide to help visitors plan their visit. The gallery introduced Relaxed Mondays to offer a dedicated day for a more relaxed experience and are designed to create a welcoming environment for any visitors with sensory needs with specialist equipment available and designated quiet space and sensory den. They work with local charity We Too! to help develop their inclusive resources.

You can view their full access guide on AccessAble here.

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We'd love to hear what activities or initiatives that your business is involved in, or where you are on your journey to enhance your accessibility or inclusive experiences. Please contact Rachel Smith by emailing to arrange a chat. 

Further resources

Please use this section to find inclusive tourism insights and other resources.

What is the potential for accessible tourism in Scotland?

Analysis from 56 Degree Insight's Spring Scottish Tourism Index. In April 2023, 56 Degree Insight added a question about impairments in the respondent's household to the Scottish Tourism Index. This question occurred during an advice session, commissioned by VisitAberdeenshire, between 56 Degree Insight and Dalriada Luxury Lodges.


An online resource of detailed Access Guides to tell customers all about a venue's access. AccessAble Consultancy can help with developing access guides, provide access audits and best practice guidance. 

Euan's Guide

The review site for people with disabilities and their family and friends. Their annual Access Survey offers helpful insights on access experiences from disabled people.

Purple Tuesday

A social movement to help improve the disabled customer experience year round. Purple Tuesday works to improve the disabled customer experience by providing businesses with insight into areas such as digital and physical accessibility. 

Purple Tuesday have created a short guide to help you become more confident when interacting with disabled customers. Click on the image below to view this free resource.