A group of leading lifestyle and garden journalists from Germany visited the north west of Ireland recently, as guests of Tourism Ireland and Fáilte Ireland.
Representing a news agency and various online and print publications, with a combined circulation of more than 331,000 people – or potential holidaymakers – around Germany, the aim of the visit was to showcase our superb gardens, as well as some of the many other things to see and do in this part of Ireland, for feature stories they are planning to write about holidays here. It was also a fantastic opportunity to highlight the many festivals and events taking place here during this special year of The Gathering Ireland 2013.
The journalists kicked off their action-packed trip with a visit to Castle Leslie in Glaslough, Co Monaghan, where they enjoyed a tour of the castle and a guided walk through the estate parklands with the head gardener. Then it was on to Donegal, with visits to Ros Ban Garden and Oakfield Park Gardens in Raphoe; and to Rathmullan House Hotel, where they enjoyed a tour of the grounds. They visited Glenveagh Castle and Gardens and spent time exploring St Columb’s Garden in Churchill, Summy Garden in Portnoo and Salthill Gardens in Mountcharles. In Co Leitrim, then visited the Organic Centre in Rossinver, as well as Lough Rynn Castle, where they spent time exploring the gardens.
Zoë Redmond, Tourism Ireland’s manager for Central Europe, said: “Tourism Ireland was delighted to bring these journalists to the North West. For many of the group, it was their first time here and they were extremely impressed by the stunning gardens, spectacular scenery and the range of things to see and do here, 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 Germany, helping us to showcase the superb gardens and tourism product on offer in Ireland to a huge audience of potential holidaymakers in Germany.”
Tourism Ireland undertakes a busy publicity programme around the world each year to raise the profile of the destination – and media visits to Ireland are a key element of that programme. In 2012, there were more than 1,400 media visits to the island of Ireland, which helped to generate articles and broadcasts around the globe worth about €50 million in equivalent advertising value.