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31 Mar 2015

Finnish TV crew is football crazy in Belfast

Half a million Finnish football fans to see images of Northern Ireland

More than half a million football fans in Finland will see stunning images of Northern Ireland on a popular online TV programme this summer. A crew filming for the TV show was in Northern Ireland at the weekend, as guests of Tourism Ireland. Their visit was scheduled to coincide with Sunday’s UEFA Euro 2016 qualifier between Northern Ireland and Finland.

The popular Finnish programme is broadcast on two websites, Moon TV and Tourism Ireland invited the crew come and film in Northern Ireland, to explore some of what’s on offer here for Finnish holidaymakers. On Sunday, ‘match day’, the show’s presenters spent time exploring Belfast, particularly the Titanic Quarter, enjoying tours of Titanic Belfast and the SS Nomadic, before catching up with Finnish football fans who had travelled to Belfast for the match. The programme – which will be broadcast in June – is part of a series on destinations which fans have visited to watch Finland’s national football team play their away matches during the UEFA Euro 2016 qualifying rounds.

The crew’s itinerary, which was prepared by Tourism NI, also saw the presenters travel through the Mournes, stopping off at Spelga Dam, Annalong and Newcastle. They explored the Causeway Coastal Route, passing through Carrickfergus, Glenarm, Glenarriff, and stopped at the Carrick-a-rede Rope Bridge, Ballintoy, the Giant’s Causeway and Dunluce Castle.  

Aileen Hickey, Tourism Ireland’s manager in the Nordic region, said: “This football fixture was a great opportunity to showcase Northern Ireland and some of the many things to see and do here to a huge audience of potential Finnish holidaymakers. The show – called ‘All-time Qualifier’ – is very popular in Finland amongst football fans, so we were delighted that the show’s producers chose to travel ‘on location’ to see what Northern Ireland has to offer. Film and TV, including online TV, are strong influencers for prospective holidaymakers and Tourism Ireland regularly works with overseas TV and production companies to facilitate making TV programmes, to generate positive exposure for Northern Ireland around the world.”

Tourism Ireland undertakes a busy publicity programme around the world each year to raise the profile of the destination – and media visits to Northern Ireland are a key element of that programme.
  Finnish TV crew Oskari Jakonen (co-presenter), Sami Silvennoinen (main presenter) and Jaakko Käyhkö (camera and sound engineer), in Belfast.

Notes To Editors

  • Tourism Ireland is the organisation responsible for promoting Northern Ireland and the island of Ireland overseas as a leading holiday destination.
  • Tourism is responsible for in excess of 5.2% of GDP in Northern Ireland and supports approximately 43,000 jobs.
  • In 2014, we welcomed an estimated 1.8 million overseas visitors to Northern Ireland, delivering revenue of about £508 million.
  • Tourism Ireland’s international website is, available in ten different language versions for over 30 individual markets around the world. In 2014, attracted about 14.25 million visitors.