Seven leading Australian travel writers are visiting Ireland this week, as guests of Tourism Ireland and Fáilte Ireland.
Representing a news agency and various publications (like The West Australian newspaper and Australian Traveller magazine) with a combined reach of over 3.5 million people – or potential Australian holidaymakers – the writers are here to experience at first-hand some of the many things to see and do here, for feature stories they are planning to write about holidays in Ireland.
The group of writers kicked off their visit in Ballyfin Demesne in Co Laois. Then it was on to Kilkenny, where they enjoyed a walking tour of the city, a visit to the National Craft Gallery in the Castle Yard, a tour of Kilkenny Castle and a bodhrán session in Kyteler’s Inn. The group continued to Wicklow, with a “film location trail” of Hollywood village, before taking the scenic drive over the Wicklow Gap – the location used in many well-known films, such as Excalibur, Braveheart and PS I Love You. They also enjoyed tours of Glendalough and Kilruddery House. They finished their visit in Dublin, where they enjoyed a walking tour with “Le Cool Dublin”.
Diane Butler, Tourism Ireland’s manager in Australia, said: “Tourism Ireland was delighted to bring these journalists to Ireland. For many of the group, it was their first time here and they were extremely impressed by the spectacular scenery, the variety of things to see and do, as well as by the hospitality and friendliness of the people they met. Fact-finding visits like this are very important; they are a really effective way for us to get positive exposure for Ireland through the media in Australia. The publicity value of the articles these journalists will produce when they return home is fantastic – they will reach over 3.5 million potential holidaymakers around Australia.”
2012 was a record year for visitor numbers from Ireland’s long-haul markets. And indications for 2013 are also positive; with Etihad’s increase of +35% in capacity on its service from Abu Dhabi to Dublin this year, which is in addition to the Emirates service from Dubai, the island of Ireland is more accessible than ever before for visitors from long-haul markets like Australia.
Australian journalists at Ballyfin Demesne, Co Laois, with Donna Campbell, Tourism Ireland (left), during a fact-finding visit to Ireland.
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 2012, an estimated 7.27 million overseas visitors came to the island of Ireland, delivering revenue of approximately €3.51 billion. Overseas tourism business accounts for 59% of all tourism revenue.
• Tourism Ireland’s international website is www.ireland.com, currently rolling out in 11 different language versions for over 30 individual markets around the world.
• ‘The Gathering Ireland 2013’ is Ireland’s biggest ever tourism initiative, consisting of a year-long programme of festivals, events and gatherings in every part of the country; Tourism Ireland has an extensive programme of promotions under way to highlight ‘The Gathering Ireland 2013’ around the world, working closely with the ‘Gathering’ project team.