A group of top Dutch travel writers visited Belfast last week, as part of a fact-finding trip to Northern Ireland. Carefully selected and invited here by Tourism Ireland in the Netherlands, their itinerary was compiled by the Northern Ireland Tourism Board.
The journalists also spent time exploring the North Antrim coast – taking in Dunluce Castle, the Giant’s Causeway and the Old Bushmills Distillery – before heading to Belfast where they enjoyed the Titanic boat trip, sampled the delights of St George’s Market and toured the Ulster Museum.
Monica Nerney, Tourism Ireland’s Manager Northern Europe, said: “The visit of these journalists is an excellent opportunity for us to showcase the sights and sounds of Belfast and Northern Ireland. There really is no substitute for being able to come and experience the tourism offering here at first-hand; it helps these journalists to find out what Northern Ireland has to offer for Dutch holidaymakers and to write more effectively when they return home.
“The Netherlands is an important market for tourism to Northern Ireland, delivering 15,000 visitors last year. Tourism Ireland has had an extensive promotional programme in place throughout 2010, highlighting Northern Ireland as a fantastic holiday destination and the ease of getting here for Dutch visitors with direct flights from Amsterdam with easyJet. It is absolutely essential that we continue to convey the message that there has never been a better time for Dutch people to visit Northern Ireland.”
Dutch journalists pictured outside St George’s Market with Karen van der Horst, Tourism Ireland the Netherlands (right) and Claire Keenan, NITB (second left).
For further information:
Elaine Moore/Clair Balmer Tourism Ireland
Tel: 028 7035 9260 Mob: 07766 527719
Notes to Editors:
• Tourism Ireland is the organisation responsible for promoting Northern Ireland and the island of Ireland overseas as a leading holiday destination.
• Tourism is responsible for in excess of 4.9% of GDP in Northern Ireland and supported approximately 40,000 jobs.
• Over 1.4 million overseas visitors came to Northern Ireland in 2009, delivering revenue of £271 million.
• Tourism Ireland’s international website is www.discoverireland.com; there are 42 different websites, providing information in 20 different languages covering every continent. In 2009 discoverireland.com attracted a record 13+ million unique visitors, a +34% increase in visits on 2008.