New research by Heriot Watt University shows that the monster’s hideaway in Loch Ness is among the most popular venues to feature in Instagram pictures.
The university analysed Instagram hashtags relating to the most popular Scottish destinations on Trip Advisor.
What are the most popular locations?
It shows Loch Ness is the third most ‘Instagramable’ destination, behind Edinburgh Castle and Loch Lomond.
Figures until October 17 show Loch Ness had 439,736 hashtags, compared to Edinburgh Castle with 602,806 and Loch Lomond which has 501,498.
Other Highlands and islands tourism hotspots to feature in the list’s top 10 include Ben Nevis (218,208 hashtags), St Kilda (198,217) and Skye’s Fairy Pools (83,102).
Local tourism operators welcomed the latest proof of the famous loch’s popularity.
Willie Cameron, known as Mr Loch Ness, says he is “delighted but not surprised” by the findings.
The director of the Cobbs group, which has various tourist attractions in the area, adds: “It’s great for Loch Ness and couldn’t come at a better time as people plan their vacations next year.”
No surprise at Loch Ness featuring high on the list
Jo de Sylva, who chairs Visit Inverness Loch Ness, said: “As one of the most beautiful natural landscapes in the world, I’m not at all surprised that Loch Ness has featured so highly in the list of most Instagrammable locations in Scotland.
“The natural wild beauty, combined with both stunning sunsets and sunrises means that the opportunities for gorgeous Instagram posts are endless.”
She says more people are experiencing the scenery and landscapes across the whole year.
“Loch Ness is so incredibly picturesque, and with the villages on the loch side offering great Highland hospitality, there is really no better place to spend a few hours, days or weeks.”
Yvonne Crook, director with Highland Tourism, adds: “This is a welcome example of how important Loch Ness and the wider beauty of the area is to the Highlands.
“Time and again we see that Loch Ness is truly a leading world class destination and we are determined to ensure a sustainable tourism future for the whole region.”
Heriot Watt said the research aims to provide information about the country when recruiting students.