Belfast was the first stop on a two-day visit to Northern Ireland last week, for a group of influential tour operators from Norway, Denmark and Sweden. The visit, organised by Tourism Ireland, in conjunction with the Northern Ireland Tourist Board, took in St George’s Market and the Titanic Quarter in Belfast, as well as the Causeway Coast and the Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge, the Giant’s Causeway and the Old Bushmills Distillery.
Steven Roberts, Tourism Ireland’s Manager for the Nordic Region, said: “This was a first-time visit for these Scandinavian tour operators to Northern Ireland and their response was overwhelmingly positive. They were particularly impressed by the stunning scenery, especially along the Causeway Coastal Route, and they remarked on the exceptional friendliness of the people they met.
“The Nordic region is an important market for tourism to the island of Ireland, last year delivering 259,000 visitors. Familiarisation visits to Northern Ireland by tour operators such as these are extremely important; the operators get to experience for themselves at first hand the wonderful scenery, the tremendous buzz of Belfast and the friendliness of the people. This visit helps them to know exactly what Northern Ireland has to offer potential Scandinavian holidaymakers and to sell more effectively when they return home.”
Enjoying St George’s Market in Belfast are tour operators Kirsten Inge Gundersen, Carlson Wagonlit Denmark; Eva Storbank, Top Rejser Denmark; Leif Michael Roos, Gislev Rejser Denmark; Lotte Ladefoged, Team Benns Denmark; Kjell Inge Jegerud, Fellesreiser Norway; Cecilia Lindgren, Scotland Tours Sweden; Paul Stanley, JAC Travel; Rikke Aagaard Peterson, Tourism Ireland Nordic Region.
Clair Balmer/Elaine Moore, Tourism Ireland, tel: 028 7035 9260/ 0776 652 7719
Stephen McGrath, Weber Shandwick, tel: 028 9034 7300/ 077 7088 6920