Lake District businesses head to Japan

Lake District businesses head to Japan

A group of six tourism businesses from the Lake District are ramping up their efforts to increase overseas visitors by embarking on a trade delegation to Japan this autumn.

Members of the Lake District Japan Forum will fly to Osaka in September and meet with key figures from the Japanese travel industry, to highlight the activities and venues that the Lake District offers to international travellers.

The ten-day delegation will take in Osaka, Nagoya and Tokyo, with an itinerary including 34 different meetings.  It is a chance for the Japan Forum to establish new contacts and develop stronger links with tourism operators in Japan.

The aim of the delegation is to inform Japanese travel chiefs about the Lake District’s tourism offer and find out more about the type of activities which are most likely to appeal to their compatriots.

A focal point of the mission will also to be to spread the word about the 150th anniversary celebrations for Beatrix Potter, whose characters are much loved by the Japanese.

Colin Fox from English Lakes Hotels Resorts & Venues, who is also chairman of the Lake District Japan Forum, said: "Japan is still one of our primary markets for visitors coming from overseas.

“Previous missions have helped us increase Japanese visitors, sometimes by more than 25%. Japanese tourists are popular visitors for many Cumbrian businesses, as they are so enthusiastic to soak up the history and heritage of the area as well as the stunning landscapes and scenery.

“We undertake our delegations to Japan every two years and they have proved fruitful.  The longevity of our relationships there continue to help maintain the regular influx of Japanese tourists we see each year.  Our aim is to update our existing contacts as well as building new networks to increase visitor numbers still further.”

The delegation includes managers from English Lakes Hotels Resorts & Venues, Mountain Goat ToursLindeth Howe Country House Hotel, Lakeside & Haverthwaite Steam Railway, Windermere Lake Cruises, The National Trust and the World of Beatrix Potter Attraction. 

The visit is also being sponsored by Grasmere Gingerbread and the Royal Mint, both of whom will be exhibiting their products, and the Lakes Distillery.

The Lake District Japan Forum is made up of a wider group of Lake District businesses who have forged close links with Japanese tour operators over the last 20 years.  This will be the group’s tenth business visit to the country.


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