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20 Apr 2018

Indian tour operators sample a flavour of Co Down

Top Indian tour operators have been visiting Co Down, 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 around Co Down. As well as visiting Tollymore Forest in Newcastle, the group also took part in a fun Game of Thrones experience at Castle Ward. They enjoyed a food tour around Strangford, sampling seafood from Strangford Lough, freshly made griddle breads and other local artisan foods. The group also spent time at Titanic Belfast and finished their tour of Northern Ireland with a visit to the Ulster Museum, to view the Game of Thrones tapestry.

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.”

Indian tour operators enjoy a baking lesson at the home of Tracey Jeffrey, NI Food Tours, in Killinchy, Co Down. Pictured with Tracey (second right) are Arundhati Sawant, Tourism Ireland; Prajna Chatterjee, Yatra Online Pvt. Ltd; Rupjyoti Lahkar, Make My Trip; Rajesh Sethi, Carnation Travels; and Orla Farren, Tourism NI.

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, 29 market sites available in 11 language versions around the world, which attracted around 19.3 million visitors in 2017.