Journalists from Britain enjoyed a gastronomy-themed visit to Co Mayo recently, as guests of Tourism Ireland. Representing various online, regional and national publications with a combined circulation of almost three million, the journalists were here to experience at first hand our world-famous Irish hospitality and the high standard of gastronomy on offer here, for feature stories they are writing about short breaks and holidays in Mayo and Ireland. The visit was also a good opportunity to highlight ease of access from GB to the west of Ireland – as the journalists flew home from Ireland West Airport Knock.
The journalists’ itinerary, which was designed by Fáilte Ireland, included a boat ride from Oughterard to Ashford Castle, a falconry lesson, as well as a tour of Ashford Castle with local historian Mick Maye. They also got to sample some of Galway Bay’s finest oysters.
Vanessa Markey, Tourism Ireland’s head of Great Britain, said: “Food is an integral part of any short break or holiday and we know that our British visitors enjoy authentic, locally produced food. Fact-finding visits such as this are extremely important in helping to increase awareness in GB of the superb food and tourism product on offer in Mayo and Ireland and the wonderful hospitality here. The publicity value of the articles these journalists will write is fantastic – they will be read by almost three million potential holidaymakers – and we are confident that this will encourage readers and ‘foodies’ to come here and sample it for themselves.”
‘Great Value Eating’ has been a focus of Tourism Ireland’s promotional campaigns in GB in recent years and Tourism Ireland has a busy programme of promotional activity in place for 2012 which includes helping to raise awareness of Ireland as a superb food tourism destination.
British journalists Mark Turner, Financial Times how to spend it; Sarah Simpson, Delicious magazine; and Katie McCabe, Archant (regional newspapers and magazines, enjoyed a falconry lesson at Ashford Castle, Co Mayo.
Further media information:
Sinéad Grace, Tourism Ireland
Tel: 087-685 9027
Notes to Editors:
• Tourism Ireland is the organisation responsible for promoting the island of Ireland overseas as a leading holiday destination.
• Tourism is the island of Ireland’s largest indigenous industry; responsible for in excess of 4% of GNP in the Republic of Ireland and employing approximately 200,000 people.
• In 2011, approximately 7.3 million overseas visitors came to the island of Ireland (+6% on 2010), delivering revenue of approximately €3.4 billion. Overseas tourism business accounts for 59% of all tourism revenue.
• Tourism Ireland’s international website is www.discoverireland.com
; there are 42 different websites, providing information in 14 different languages covering every continent. In 2011 discoverireland.com attracted almost 12 million unique visitors.