Visitors to Highland Perthshire are set to benefit from new facilities thanks a big funding boost from VisitScotland.

Over £230k has been awarded to Perth & Kinross Council towards the creation of new, free-to-use toilet facilities at Aberfeldy to be open year-round for the benefit and comfort of walking, cycling, wheeling, horse riding and water sports users on the long-distance active travel route, the River Tay Way, between Perth and Kenmore, including accessible and family-friendly facilities.

The new comfort hub at the Aberfeldy Car Park next to Beyond Adventure will also include waste disposal facilities for the growing number of motorhome users touring the area.

The project includes a visitor information point for the River Tay Way, including boards detailing the route; visitor attractions and businesses in the area; messages on biodiversity; what visitors can do to mitigate climate change; and details of climate change mitigation provision within the facility.

Birks of Aberfeldy © paul holloway

Nearby visitor attraction Birks of Aberfeldy ©paul holloway

The project is being jointly delivered by Perth & Kinross Council (PKC) and Perth and Kinross Countryside Trust (PKCT), who are developing the River Tay Way.

Funding for this new free public facility is coming from the Rural Tourism Infrastructure Fund, which was established by the Scottish Government and is managed by VisitScotland on their behalf. To date, £9 million of grant funding has been awarded to 45 projects across rural Scotland, since the start of the Fund in 2018. 

RTIF is designed to support collaborative projects that focus on improving the visitor experience in rural parts of Scotland that are facing immediate and damaging pressures on their infrastructure, or negative impacts on communities due to significant increases in visitor numbers - especially as the industry moves in to the recovery phase of the STERG National Action Plan

Councillor John Duff commented:

The Council’s approach to tourism is not just about growing tourism but about making the visit a quality and sustainable experience. We don’t want our beautiful scenic landscapes, or our rural areas spoiled by irresponsible behaviours. We want to develop ‘responsible tourism’ and to adopt a more managed approach to visitors of all kinds.

For all these reasons, we have been working in partnership with PKCT to secure funding for this vital toilet facility in Aberfeldy – which I am sure will be welcomed by residents and visitors alike. The area has seen substantial increases in domestic tourism and in the staycation market, particularly those with motorhomes, and this facility will be a valuable asset, both the residents and tourists visiting the Aberfeldy area.

PKC Visitor Rangers promote responsible tourism in places across Perthshire, including Aberfeldy © PKC

Caroline Warburton, VisitScotland Regional Leadership Director, said:

It is great to see Perthshire benefiting from the Rural Tourism Infrastructure Fund with improved toilet access for Aberfeldy.

Over the last three years, the Rural Tourism Infrastructure Fund has played an important role in improving the visitor experience, through supporting investment in rural facilities such as car parking, toilets and footpaths so it is wonderful that this project is receiving funding.

We all need to play our part in being responsible visitors and improvement works like these are crucial to ensuring our visitor destinations remain sustainable for years to come.

Tourism is a force for good and if managed responsibly, sustains communities in every corner of Scotland, creates jobs, tackles depopulation and improves the wellbeing of everyone who experiences it.

Peter Quinn, PKCT Trust Director said:

This modern multi-purpose / multi-user energy-efficient toilet block will be open year-round for visitors who comes any time of year, whether to see the autumn colours of Perthshire Big Tree Country or any of the other many sites to see in the Aberfeldy area throughout the year, and provide waste disposal facilities for motorhome users.

For more information about the River Tay Way, please visit

River Tay Way logo