Tourism research

  • How many people visit the National Park?
  • How much is tourism worth to the local economy?
  • What attracts people to the area?
  • What activities do visitors undertake?
  • Where do visitors come from?
  • What are the views of local tourism businesses?

The answer to all of these questions, and more, are contained within our tourism research. Volume and Value data is collected annually through use of the STEAM model, whilst the biennial Visitor Survey provides insight into the experience of our visitors.

STEAM 2010 - 2021 Volume and value of tourism:
Exmoor National Park (PDF) Data cut to the boundary of the National Park (staying & day visits)

Greater Exmoor influence area (PDF) Data cut to include the National Park (staying & day visitors) + staying visitor data for all parishes within 10 miles.

STEAM approaches the measurement of tourism at the local level from the supply side, which has the benefit of immediacy and relative inexpensiveness and is not designed to provide a precise and accurate measurement of tourism in a local area, but rather to provide an indicative base for monitoring trends. STEAM reports are produced on behalf of Exmoor National Park Authority by GTS (UK) Ltd. An overview of the STEAM model can be found here (PDF).

Exmoor National Park Authority supported a CASE funded PhD at the University of Exeter. The research project explored the perceptions people have of Exmoor and the relation between people and place, with the aim of supporting the sustainability of the Exmoor tourism industry by informing its marketing strategies. The in depth research recommends marketing the experiences of Exmoor as a place, rather than marketing Exmoor by itself, meaning a shift in focus from special qualities of the National Park (those features which make Exmoor a unique natural environment worthy of protection) to qualities of people’s experience (those unique experiences that can help to market Exmoor as a leading visitor destination).

Research Summary (PDF). A practical toolkit for businesses to apply the research can be accessed here.

Access further regional and national research relating to tourism.
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