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27 Apr 2017

French journalists say ‘oui’ love Donegal

3.3 million French to read all about Donegal and the North West Wild Atlantic Way

A group of top French journalists, writing for four different print and online publications, has been exploring Donegal and the north-western section of the Wild Atlantic Way this week, as guests of Tourism Ireland and Fáilte Ireland.

The journalists – whose publications have a combined circulation of more than 3.3 million readers – were here to explore, and then write about, what Donegal has to offer French holidaymakers.

The group flew into Donegal Airport, recently voted the world's second most scenic airport landing, by the private jet booking service Private Fly. Their itinerary included visits to Glenveagh National Park and Castle, Fanad Head Lighthouse, the Slieve League Cliffs and Kinnegar Brewery, in Rathmullan. They also foraged for seaweed on Glen Bay Beach.

Monica MacLaverty, Tourism Ireland’s Head of Southern Europe, said: “Tourism Ireland was delighted to invite this group of influential journalists to visit Donegal – helping us to spread the good news about this part of Ireland to prospective French visitors. Publicity is an important element of our overall promotional programme, helping to raise awareness through the media in France of the many things to see and do on a holiday around the island of Ireland. I am confident that their visit will result in lots of positive publicity for Donegal in a range of online and print publications.”

France is one of our top four markets for tourism to the island of Ireland and we have seen very good growth in French visitor numbers so far again this year, with the most recent CSO figures for December 2016 – February 2017 showing growth of +5.3% – an extra 4,600 French visitors compared with the same three-month period last year. Tourism Ireland is undertaking an extensive programme of promotions to keep the momentum going and build on that growth.
  French journalists at Glencolmcille Folk Village, with Estelle Albira, Tourism Ireland (right).

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 220,000 people.
  • In 2016, we welcomed approximately 10.5 million overseas visitors to the island of Ireland, delivering revenue of about €5.4 billion.
  • Tourism Ireland’s international website is, 29 market sites available in 11 language versions around the world, which attracted 19.37 million visitors in 2016.