Author: cecilia


June #HITAAdventure

HITA – The Highlands and Islands Tourism Awards are established and renowned as the annual celebration of excellence across the local tourism industry.

Wow – what a start to our #HITAHero Awards last month! It has been so exciting seeing you celebrate so many of our amazing businesses within the Highlands and Islands’ tourism industry, and we are just getting started.

This month, our #HITAHero campaign is celebrating the best Outdoor/Adventure Experiences in the Highlands and Islands. The past year has given us the opportunity to explore more of what’s available on our doorstep and appreciate the open spaces surrounding us, so let’s give back and shine a spotlight on Scotland!

Throughout the Highlands and Islands, the Scottish landscape is something to behold, with its mysterious woodlands, hidden beaches and glistening lochs, all of which offer the chance for an adventure.

Whether you enjoy the exhilarating rush of watersports, exploring new outdoor spaces when hiking, or cycling through local woodlands, we want to hear from you. Using the #HITAHero or #HITAAdventure hashtag, share a photo of your favourite Outdoor/Adventure Experience and spread the excitement.

Remember that although we are focusing on Outdoor/Adventure Experiences in June, we still want to see all of your pictures throughout the Highlands and Islands. So if you stop for a bite to eat whilst on your adventure, just use our #HITAHero hashtag and be entered into our monthly competition to be in with the chance of winning one of our exciting prizes!

June prizes are:

A seal trip for two with Calum’s Seal Trips
Paddleboarding for two with Sutherland Adventure Company

Take on the adventure as a Highland Islands Tourism Awards Hero (HITAHero) and see whatyou discover!


May HITA Attraction

Best Heritage Tourism Experience/Best Visitor Attraction
Welcome to the first month of our #HITAHERO Awards! We are so excited to start this adventure of celebrating the Highlands and Islands’ tourism industry with you.

To start our #HITAHERO Campaign we are celebrating our Tourism Experiences and Visitor Attraction businesses throughout the Highlands and Islands. As the weather is brightening up and restrictions are easing, it is the perfect opportunity to step outside and appreciate your local attractions.

Visit that exciting new place you have always talked about going to or return to that local spot that you’ve not visited since you were young, and don’t forget to take a picture – we would love for you to share them with us using either the #HITAHero or the #HITAAttractions hashtag.

Although May’s focus is on Visitor Attractions, we still want to see all of your pictures throughout the Highlands and Islands – so if you pick up a takeaway from a charming café where you received a warm welcome, then post them too! Just use our #HITAHERO hashtag so that we can join in the celebration – and remember, this will enter you into our monthly competition to be in with the chance of winning one of our exciting prizes!

Over to you HITA Heroes. Time to begin this exciting adventure and let us know what Tourist Attraction you love most in the Highlands and Islands.

Where will you visit first?


Highlands & Islands Tourism Awards 2020 – ENTRIES NOW OPEN!

There is a huge amount to be recognised within the Tourism Industry in the Highlands and Islands, and this is exactly what the HITA awards aim to celebrate. Now in the 16th year of the awards, these accolades aim to promote and celebrate businesses and individuals who work tirelessly to ensure our tourism industry is world class.

Nominations for the 2020 awards are now open, and it is the perfect opportunity to have a think about the story your business wishes to tell, and why it stands out from the crowd. If you operate within the tourism sector in the Highlands, we have a category for you – read on for our full list of our 2020 award categories.

Best Bar/Pub
Best Cultural Event or Festival
Climate Champion
Best Hotel Experience Under 20 Rooms
Best Hotel Experience Over 20 Rooms
Best Informal Eating Experience
Best Outdoor/Adventure Experience
Best Restaurant Experience
Best Self-Catering Accommodation
Best Visitor Attraction
Highland Ambassador
Highland Rising Star
Most Hospitable B&B/Guest House
Tourism & Hospitality Hero

These awards aim to recognise excellence across our fantastic tourism industry here in the Highlands, so whether you are a cutting-edge venue attracting the latest talent in your area or offering a homely feel for your guests’ night after night, we want to celebrate you! Enter here.

Don’t delay, nominations close on the 12th of June, and entries close on the 29th.



The 2020 Scottish Thistle Awards took place at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre on the 5th of March where winners from five regional awards competed to find the very best in the Scottish Tourism industry.

The HITA team would like to congratulate all finalists and winners of the night, with a special mention to our Highlands and Islands 2019 winners, Eagle Brae, James Ryan from Culloden Battlefield and Glenegedale House, for bringing their prestigious trophies back home to the Highlands.

The winners of the night were:

The Pot Still – Best Bar/Pub
All-Energy Exhibition and Conference 2019 – Best Business
Paisley Halloween Festival – Best Cultural Event or Festival
Robert Burns Birthplace Museum – Best Heritage Tourism Experience
The Dunstane Houses – Best Hotel Experience
The Real Food Café – Best Informal Eating Experience
Land Rover Experience Scotland – Best Outdoor Adventure Experience
L’escargot blanc – Best Restaurant Experience
Eagle Brae – Best Self Catering Accommodation Experience
Salmon Skyline Scotland – Best Sporting Event
The McManus: Dundee’s Art Gallery & Museum – Best Visitor Attraction
Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2018 – Inclusive Tourism
Invisible Cities – Innovation in Tourism
Glenegedale House – Most Hospitable B&B/Guest House
James Ryan, Culloden Battlefield Visitor Centre – Tourism & Hospitality Hero
Aberdeen International Airport and its Northern Lights Lounge Food and Drink Suppliers – Working Together for Tourism

Congratulations once again, what an achievement!

Nominations and entries are now open for the 2020 Highlands and Islands Tourism Awards and if you’re involved in our region’s tourism industry then we strongly encourage you to enter.  #HITA2020


2019 Highlands & Islands Tourism Awards winners announced

The winners of this year’s Highlands and Islands Tourism Awards (HITA) have been announced at an awards ceremony at the Drumossie Hotel, Inverness.
World Tourism Day - Highlands & Islands Tourism Awards
guest blogger tourism news News

World Tourism Day!

To celebrate World Tourism Day, Visit Scotland’s Silver Thistle Award Winner for 2019, Mr Willie Cameron, wanted to share a little on the tourism within the Highlands & Islands. Willie, affectionately known as ‘Mr Loch Ness’, is also one of our HITA Board Members and won Highlands and Islands Food and Drink Ambassador in 2016 and Highlands and Islands Tourism Ambassador in 2005.
Laurence Young 2019 Board Highlands & Islands Tourism Awards

Highlands & Islands Tourism Awards 2019 Finalists Revealed

The finalists in the prestigious Highlands and Islands Tourism Awards have been announced with more than 40 firms and individuals in line for a HITA award, after judges whittled down hundreds of entries to create shortlists in categories ranging from best informal eating experience to innovation in tourism.
Highlands & Islands Tourism Awards 2019

HITA 2019 Finalist update

We have some exciting news!  We couldn’t wait until next week to tell you… so we will be announcing the Highlands and Islands Tourism Awards 2019 shortlist this Friday!  Head over to the blog and click follow us to be notified first about who the HITA 2019 finalists are.  You’ll also be able to keep up-to-date with any other exciting news on the run up to the awards ceremony in November.  We are so excited to reveal the finalists… 3 days to go! 
2018 Winners Highlands & Islands Tourism Awards

Our 2018 Winners

As we countdown the days until the 2019 Highlands and Islands Tourism Awards finalists are revealed, we thought it was the perfect opportunity to look back on last year’s winners.
Highlands & Islands Tourism Awards 2019

Highlands and Islands Businesses Embrace the Opportunity for Recognition

Interest in the Highlands and Islands Tourism Awards (HITA) was at an all-time high this year as hundreds of businesses and individuals around the region got stuck into their applications for one of the 15 categories.
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