17 August 2017

Destination Reports


Ireland goes wild as visitors pour in
March 2017 3212

AS THE country’s largest employment provider, the tourism sector of Ireland has been in the news for the right reasons. Tourism is responsible for in excess of 4 per cent of gross national product of the Republic of Ireland employing 200,000 people. Recent figures from the Central Statistics Office confirm that a record-breaking 9.6 million arrivals were recorded in 2016, an increase of +10.9 per cent or 941,300 additional overseas visitors, when compared
with 2015.

This includes excellent all-round performances. Overseas arrivals are up +10.9 per cent, to almost 9.6 million, between January and December 2016 – an extra 941,300 visitors. Arrivals from Australia and developing markets are up over +2 per cent, or 11,600 additional
visitors.

Tourism Ireland is keen on building on the offerings of its much-hyped Wild Atlantic Way. The Board describes the offering as “A sensational journey of soaring cliffs, stunning coastlines and buzzing towns and cities will leave you speechless. From the wind-whipped tip of Malin Head to the safe haven of Kinsale Harbour and the stunning Ring of Kerry, wrap yourself in the wilderness of the west coast of Ireland on the world's longest defined coastal touring route for a once-in-a-lifetime experience.” Hand-picked recommendations of the Wild Atlantic Way would include the below attractions.

Malin Head
Untouched, off-radar and ripe for exploration, this rugged and remote area marks the northwestern contour of the Wild Atlantic Way. Nature is the star here, from the sheer granite walls of some of Europe’s highest sea cliffs at Slieve League, to Northern Lights dancing in clear winter skies. Malin Head is at the very tip of the Inishowen Peninsula, Ireland’s most northerly point. Over millions of years the wild Atlantic has carved dramatic crevices into the rugged headland, such as Hell’s Hole – a long, deep, narrow chasm where the swells below churn
and roar.

Those feeling peckish can experience a private dining experience with the Chef’s Table at Brian McDermott’s
Cookery School.

Kinsale Harbour Cruise
Kinsale is a traditional commercial port with a long history. It has a splendid, virtually land locked natural harbour on the estuary of the Bandon River, 11 nautical miles South West of Cork harbour entrance about eight kilometres north-northeast of the Old Head of Kinsale. Both the outer and inner harbours cover approximately five square kilometres, providing good shelter and
anchorage.

This seaside town has worn many hats throughout Ireland's history: Viking trading post, site of a 17th century siege. As the boat circles the mouth of the harbour, you will spy the wind-whipped lighthouse on the Old Head of Kinsale; and beyond, the resting place of the liner Lusitania, sunk one dark day in 1915.

The Skellig Ring
The Ring of Kerry traces the coastline of the Iveragh Peninsula, as the combination of ocean, islands, mountains, towns and villages makes it a diverse journey of
discovery.

Named one of the top regions in the world for travellers in 2017, the region receives the accolade in Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2017, the highly anticipated collection of the world’s hottest trends, destinations and experiences for the year ahead.

The bestselling, travel yearbook from one of the world’s leading travel authorities highlights the top ten countries, cities, regions and best value destinations that Lonely Planet’s experts recommend travellers experience in 2017.

The Skellig Ring is a coastal drive that is an extension of the famous Ring of Kerry on the Wild Atlantic Way – described in Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2017 as “perhaps Ireland’s most charismatically wild and emerald stretch of coastline”.


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