FOLLOWING a successful inaugural event in 2022, the Loch Ness Challenge will be back for 2023 with an even bigger challenge, new organisers and new name – Loch Ness Festival.
The event will run over the course of 10 days, from 26th May until 4th June 2023, and will include running, mountain biking and hiking events for the most adventurous, alongside a programme of comedy, live music, food and drink, tours, boat trips, and much more. And local businesses, performers, suppliers and volunteers are now being encouraged to sign-up to get involved.
The 2022 Loch Ness Challenge, which took place in May and was created by Visit Inverness Loch Ness (VILN), brought 430 visitors to Inverness and Loch Ness, contributing an estimated £73,320 to the local economy. Those visitors booked 138 nights in hotels, 48 nights in self-catering properties, 108 nights in B&Bs and guesthouses and 112 nights on campsites in the area.
“The inaugural Loch Ness Challenge created awareness of the outstanding Loch Ness 360 Trail and brought economic benefits to the communities around Inverness and Loch Ness,” explained Michael Golding, CEO of Visit Inverness Loch Ness. “Participants were blown away by the route so, to take the event to the next level, GOYA Events Ltd will be taking the reins for the Loch Ness Festival 2023, with support from Visit Inverness Loch Ness.”
“The Loch Ness Festival will present the best the Highlands has to offer from our food and drink to our culture through music and even comedy. We want local businesses to benefit from the festival by having a presence and the opportunity to showcase their products. Nothing demonstrates our Highland hospitality better than our volunteers and we are so grateful to everyone who supported us this year. We hope the festival will encourage people from the community to volunteer next year and be part of it.”
The new organisers, GOYA Events Ltd, led by Max Cluer and Craig Dutton, wish to showcase local culture, communities and Highland hospitality at the event.
Max Cluer said: “Our vision is to create a festival that will become an international bucket list item for tourists, athletes, adventure seekers and the local communities. This will be done sustainably through best practice, conscious travel, community involvement and employment and by showcasing the very best that Inverness and Loch Ness have to offer, while still holding on to the beautiful culture and heritage of the Scottish Highlands.”
Any local businesses, suppliers, performers or volunteers who wish to get involved with this exciting event should contact email@example.com for further information.
Entry for the Loch Ness Festival events will open on 1st November 2022.