Thursday, January 24, 2019

Great Britain & Ireland

Destination update: Scotland, Wales & North Ireland
April 2018 679

People love to tour Scotland so new routes have been launched, after the success of the NorthCoast 500, which headed to the very tip of the north west of Scotland. The new route is the NorthEast 250, which connects with Speyside – the traditional Speyside distilleries route, to the very top of the North East and into Aberdeen, where there is a castle trail, including the Queens Balmoral Castle.

Other coastal routes down by the SouthWest coastal 300. This takes in Burns country and goes right down to the Solway Coast with stunning fishing villages – ideal for authentic and immersion into local community.

Scotland’s first design museum, V & A Dundee, planned by a Japanese Architect, who was inspired by the waterway and the ship-building heritage of the region, will open in September this year.

The past few years, Visit Wales has had different themes, a great way of highlighting different elements that the destination has to offer. In 2016, it was the Year of Adventure, which encompassed those coming for the first time to try Welsh food and stay at Welsh accommodation. In 2017, The Year of Legends highlighting 641 castles in Wales, some that have been turned into attractions and some into accommodation – so guests can live like a royal.

2018 is the Year of Sea. Wales has 817 miles of coastline and within that there are two national including Snowdonia and Pembrokeshire. The goal this year is to celebrate Wales as an epic coastline and to make it as a stand-out UK destination for 2018 and to highlight what the coastline and Wales has to offer.

Although 2017 full figures haven’t been released yet, it is said to be the biggest year for tourism in Northern Ireland. The first two months of 2018 have also shown a 7.9 per cent increase in overseas visitors. 

Northern Ireland has one of the world’s leading visitor attractions, the Titanic City of Belfast, where the famous ship, the Titanic, was built. The walled city of Derry and London Derry with its 400-year-old city walls are also a key attraction. The coast of Northern Ireland is considered as one of the world top-five driving coastal routes. Northern Ireland is essentially an island, and no part of the Northern Ireland is more than one hour from the sea.

About 10,000 hotel rooms will be available in Northern Ireland by 2020 and over 1,000 new hotel rooms will come on stream this year alone. One of the new hotels that has recently opened is the Titanic Hotel located right outside Titanic Belfast. It was the former Harland and Wolff Office where Thomas Andrews and his designers created all the plans for Titanic. 

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