Will Leicester become a big visitor attraction?

By | Category: Travel destinations

leicester-city-vw280-34978First it found Richard III’s remains, then it opened a visitor attraction based on the unlucky king. Now a local lad, Tony Selby has won the World Snooker Championship and finally their unfancied football team has won the Premier League.

The attention of British media and much of the world’s media has been on the city. Yesterday, Gulf News ran the football team’s success on its front page just like British papers did. In Thailand where the investment came to support the club, Thais have been converted to become Leicester supporters.   Both the two main English language newspapers ran the story as did many of the Thai language mass-circulation ones. The Bangkok Post had the win on its front page as did The Nation which announced that the son of the owner planned to bring the team to Thailand to thank supporters.

I cannot believe that some Thai tour operator or travel agency isn’t planning tours to Leicester and the football ground. I cannot imagine that Leicester will have more tours around the ground to see the place where the manager Claudio Ranieri, created his pizza show to stimulate the players.

Officially, the town isn’t twinned with any Thai city. Is that because the success of the football club means that it is twinned with the whole of Thailand?

Leicestershire hoteliers will be hoping to reap the benefits of the win as fans visit the city and the other attractions will try and jump on the bandwagon. Coach operators that previously only offered tours to grounds like Old Trafford and the Emirates will be looking to introduce domestic tours.

One of the reasons that Leicester might see a big upsurge in tourism is that everyone likes underdogs and no-one will deny that that is what Leicester were. So even fanatical football fans from rival premiership teams will have warm feelings towards Leicester.

On the official tourism website, Visit Leicester, there is no Leicester City FC trail yet but give it time. There is no Leicester City FC Museum listed on its website but can one be too far away?

Leicester used to be linked with Gary Lineker, Walkers Crisps and then came the news of Richard III. There is already an image on the internet of the Queen in Leicester colours. How long before a Shakespearian line goes, “A season ticket, a season ticket, my kingdom for a season ticket?”  And how long before the visitors arrive?

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