Northern Ireland has featured strongly as a popular destination for travel writers from the US so far this year. This week, Tourism Ireland, in association with the Northern Ireland Tourist Board, hosted a visit here by the prestigious Midwest Travel Writers Association, whose visit included sightseeing in Belfast, a guided tour of Ballywalter Estate accompanied by Lord Dunleath and a chance to explore Londonderry’s historic walls.
Joe Byrne, Tourism Ireland’s Head of North America, said: “We are delighted at the level of positive travel coverage Northern Ireland has received in the US so far this year. We are particularly pleased to have a group here from the MTWA – the prestigious organisation of travel communicators based in the Midwestern states.
“In a difficult year for outbound tourism from the US, the visit of these influential journalists is an excellent opportunity to showcase the wonderful scenery and hospitality of Northern Ireland. The American market remains a very important market and we in Tourism Ireland are pulling out all the stops to win business and to keep Northern Ireland ‘top of mind’ with the American consumer.”
The Midwest Travel Writers Association (MTWA) is the oldest association of professional travel writers in the US. Its membership includes writers, photographers and travel publicists who are based in one of the 13 Midwestern states (Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota and Wisconsin) working for local, regional and national newspapers and magazines and the internet.
In May 2009 another prestigious group of travel writers will visit Northern Ireland when the Travel Classics Writers’ Conference takes place in Belfast.
Pictured at Ballywalter Estate are Jackie Sheckler, Herald Times; Janet Podolak, The News-Herald; Lord Dunleath; Marylu Laffey, Freelance writer; Amy Eckert, Freelance writer and photographer.
For further press information:
Elaine Moore, Tourism Ireland tel: 028 7035 9260 / 07766 527719
Sonya Cassidy, Weber Shandwick tel: 028 9034 7300