Famous Conwy Castle in Wales, United Kingdom

Wales launches UK’s first national metaverse to encourage tourism

Wales has become the first nation in the United Kingdom to launch a metaverse platform to attract tourists.

Visit Wales, the country’s official international tourism agency, announced the virtual experience this week. It says Wales is the first in Europe to use the metaverse to showcase its tourist destinations, from striking landscapes to medieval castles.

Metaverse users can now virtually visit the country from the comfort of their homes, including seeing some of the famous attractions and learning about the culture of the Welsh people.

The experience will also include quests to collect dragons hidden across a virtual island and formulating an itinerary that includes physical destinations that the visitors can use in real-life visits.

The platform is accessible through smartphones, laptops, and VR headsets.

“The Wales Metaverse has been created to reach new audiences – wherever they may be in the world – and inspire them to visit our awesome nation for real,” commented Hannah Blythyn, the Minister for Tourism.

The world is rapidly evolving, and digital experiences are becoming more prominent. To compete, Wales must seek ‘incredibly innovative ways’ to attract tourists, the minister believes.

“… we’re putting Wales in an online sphere where millions of people already meet every day,” she added.

Tourist numbers in Wales have dropped significantly in recent years. A 2023 report revealed that visitors dipped 33% while the amount of money they splashed in the country decreased by 24%. Another report found that of the 41 million international tourists that visited the U.K., only one million headed to Wales.

A committee at the Welsh parliament found the biggest challenge to be the lack of “a coherent brand” to attract global tourists.

Visit Wales believes the metaverse platform is a significant first step in raising the country’s profile as a tourist destination.

According to journalist Steffan Powell, who was involved in the project, the metaverse will offer potential visitors “a flavour of all the exciting things you can see and do on a holiday in Wales.”

While the hype behind the metaverse has died down in recent years, the potential remains. Some recent applications include medical tourism, at NASA to train astronauts for future space missions, to preserve culture and more.

Watch: Unravelling the Metaverse at the CES Tech Las Vegas 2022

YouTube video

New to blockchain? Check out CoinGeek’s Blockchain for Beginners section, the ultimate resource guide to learn more about blockchain technology.