On song in her role as a new Scottish ambassador

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A Gaelic singer hailing from the Outer Hebrides has been unveiled as one of the country’s latest ambassadors in VisitScotland’s internationally-acclaimed marketing campaign Meet the Scots.

Kathleen MacInnes, originally from South Uist, splits her time between family and travelling and performing all over Scotland and will help spread the word about the year that Scotland welcomes the world across key international markets.

As part of the European marketing campaign for Homecoming Scotland 2014, Kathleen is one of eight new faces joining the existing 15 Scottish ambassadors who have promoted Scottish tourism across the globe for the last few years - making a total of 23.

Kathleen performs at many lively festivals and concerts, particularly in the Highlands and Islands where Gaelic is still widely spoken and is still very much a natural part of daily life for many people.

Spending a lot of time travelling around Scotland is never a chore and Kathleen said she will never tire of the stunning scenery she passes as she travels from gig to gig.

Kathleen is based in Glasgow and while she enjoys Glasgow life with its parks and gardens, galleries and museums, she regularly goes back to the North Highlands and the Islands which have inspired her work, saying “I have the best of both worlds.”

Kathleen recommends visiting Ceolas, a summer music and dance school which takes place on South Uist every summer.

“This is a good time to catch some great traditional music either by attending the school or going to the fantastic evening concerts that happen at various venues throughout the island,” she said.

Kathleen’s other tips include exploring some of Scotland’s spectacular beaches, island hopping and taking a flight from Glasgow to Barra in the Hebrides, where your aeroplane will land directly on the beach!

Kathleen also recommends the Scottish seafood, which she feels is second to none, saying: “I like to pop into the Loch Duart Artisan Smokehouse at The Pier, Lochcarnan, when I’m home on South Uist, to pick up handcrafted smoked salmon or ask about for local fishermen who will sell you a bag of crab claws to eat on the step with a glass of wine and enjoy the sunset.”

The Meet the Scots campaign sees charismatic, real-life Scots being chosen as ambassadors to present inspiring themes and showcase the range of and depth of activities, events and festivals taking place across Scotland throughout the year.

The £1.7 million online and print marketing promotion is targeting millions of potential visitors in the key European markets of Germany, France and Spain, as well as Italy, Sweden, Belgium and the Netherlands. Further afield, Meet the Scots is aimed at the United States, Canada and Australia.