Leading Chinese and Japanese tour operators have been exploring various Game of Thrones filming locations, as part of a fact-finding trip to Northern Ireland.
The tour operators were invited here by Tourism Ireland, in conjunction with Tourism NI, to participate in the annual Meet the Buyer workshop in the Belfast Waterfront. Afterwards, they enjoyed a post-workshop tour which took in various Games of Thrones locations – including the Dark Hedges at Stranocum and the caves at Cushendall. They also enjoyed a guided tour of Glenarm Castle and had the chance to explore the Steensons Jewellers workshop in Glenarm, to see some of the pieces created for the hit TV show.
Niall Gibbons, CEO of Tourism Ireland, said: “Tourism Ireland was delighted to bring 158 top international tourism buyers to Northern Ireland for Meet the Buyer 2018 – including 39 buyers who are visiting for the first time. This annual event presents such an important opportunity for our local tourism partners. The high attendance of the buyers from around the world is a strong indication that interest in visiting Northern Ireland remains high and that it can, and is, competing with the best destinations in the world.
“Tourism Ireland has an extensive programme of promotions under way across the world, to highlight Northern Ireland and continue to grow tourism in 2018. We are promoting the Causeway Coastal Route, as well as our other iconic experiences like Titanic Belfast and, of course, our world-class golf. We continue to capitalise on our connection with Game of Thrones and build on the success of our award-winning ‘Doors of Thrones’ and Game of Thrones Tapestry campaigns. With our spectacular scenery, world-class visitor attractions and good value accommodation, Northern Ireland truly is a ‘must see’ destination. Our message to all the tourism buyers is that there has never been a better time to come and visit Northern Ireland.”
Chinese and Japanese tour operators at Glenarm Castle with Colin Neill, Tourism NI (standing, left); and James Kenny, Tourism Ireland (standing, right).
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 61,300 jobs.
- In 2017, we welcomed approximately 2.26 million overseas visitors to Northern Ireland, delivering revenue of about £586 million.
- Tourism Ireland’s international website is www.ireland.com, 29 market sites available in 11 language versions around the world, which attracted around 19.3 million visitors in 2017.