Six leading travel writers from Austria visited Donegal and Sligo over the weekend, as guests of Tourism Ireland and Fáilte Ireland.
Representing various online and print publications (including the Kronen Zeitung, Austria’s largest newspaper), with a combined audience of more than four million people – or potential Austrian holidaymakers – the journalists were here to experience at first-hand some of the many things to see and do in the North West and, in turn, to inspire their readers to come and experience the destination for themselves.
First stop for the group was the stone fort of Grianán of Aileach, followed by a visit to Rathmullan House, where they had a craft beer tasting session. They enjoyed a walking tour of the Fanad Peninsula and a visit to Glenveagh Castle and Gardens, as well as a cycling tour on Árainn Mhór and a visit to Sliabh League. In Sligo, they heard all about the life and works of WB Yeats from Damien Brennan of Yeats Sligo Ireland, followed by a tour of some of the important sites connected with the great writer. Yeats2015 is an important element of Tourism Ireland’s programme of promotions in Austria, and elsewhere around the world, this year.
Zoë Redmond, Tourism Ireland’s manager for Central Europe, said: “Tourism Ireland was delighted to bring this group of journalists to the North West. Fact-finding visits like this are very important; they are a really effective way for us to get positive exposure for the island of Ireland through the media in Austria. The publicity value of the articles these journalists will produce when they return home is fantastic – they will be read by more than four million people in Austria, encouraging them to come here and experience the North West for themselves.
“The events commemorating the 150th anniversary of the birth of WB Yeats provide a wonderful hook for Tourism Ireland to highlight Sligo and Ireland around the world. Tourism Ireland is therefore taking every opportunity to shine a spotlight on the Yeats2015 programme – leveraging the tourism benefits of the anniversary and showcasing the island of Ireland and the North West as a destination with a rich literary heritage.”
Walking guide Seán Mullan (fourth left), with travel writers from Austria; Simon Bopp, Tourism Ireland (second left); and Brendan Liddy, Fáilte Ireland (right), at Rathmullan Beach.
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 2014, we welcomed an estimated 8.6 million overseas visitors to the island of Ireland, delivering revenue of about €4.26 billion. Overseas tourism business accounts for 59% of all tourism revenue.
- Tourism Ireland’s international website is www.Ireland.com, available in ten different language versions for over 30 individual markets around the world. In 2014, Ireland.com attracted about 14.25 million visitors.