Irish Tourism News and Accolades

By Jayne Leonard
11 May 2015

Check out some of what’s new around Ireland - tourism wise. We’ll update this post regularly so you can pick up on what's new and what's receiving awards and accolades.

What’s New - Tourism Wise?
  • ‘Ireland’s Ancient East’ has being launched to match the appeal of the Wild Atlantic Way. It’s described as a ‘touring region’, rather than a specific route, aimed at offering visitors a relaxing journey of discovery stretching from Newgrange (with its stone-age passage tomb, older than the pyramids) through the Midlands and southeast to Cork. Check out Failte Ireland’s video of the region to see what you can expect!
  • National Geographic Expeditions is launching a cruise in June 2016, which will circumnavigate Ireland. Highlights of the 8-day itinerary will include Zodiac spins around Skellig Michael and Wexford's Great Saltee Island, visiting Dún Aonghusa on Inis Mór, and discovering the geology of the Giant's Causeway. 

  • Center Parcs, the European network of Holiday villages, is planning to open a €100m holiday resort park in Longford - complete with over 200 lodges and villas, a swimming pool complex and spas. Activities on offer will include swimming, bike hire, kayaking, high rope courses, adventure golf, raft-building and tennis. 

  • Meet a Famous Beer in Kilkenny: The recently opened Smithwick’s Experience in Kilkenny is one of Ireland’s newest attractions and is where you can immerse yourself in the 300 year history of Ireland’s famous beer. It's so good that Lonely Planet have named it their 'Top 26 Hot Attractions for 2015'
  • Whiskey Tour in Offaly: Tullamore D.E.W. in County Offaly opened their new state-of-the-art Buy your Tickets to Tullamore D.E.W. Visitor Centre heredistillery in September 2014. It is the first ‘from the ground up’ distillery in Ireland in over 100 years. 
  • Michelin Stars: all of Ireland’s nine Michelin Star Restaurants have retained their status for 2015. See our Foodie Ireland post for the list.
  • TripAdvisor reveals its Top 10 Irish Destinations for 2015, with Killarney topping the list!


News of Awards and Accolades
  • The Irish Tourism Industry Award Finalists 2015 have been named, including attractions featuring on our website: Glasnevin Cemetery Museum in both the Best Cultural Experience & Best Leisure Tourism Innovation categories; the Guinness Storehouse in the Best Leisure Tourism Innovation category; and the Cliffs of Moher Visitor Experience and Doolin Cave in the Best Environmental Tourism Innovation Category. Tickets to all of the above can be bought on - at best value prices! (UPDATE: Glasnevin Cemetary Museum was named the Best Cultural Experience & the Guinness Storehouse was named Best Leisure Tourism Innovation!)
  • Ireland named in Lonely Planet’s Top 10 ‘Best in Travel’ Countries 2015
  • Titanic Belfast named Europe's Top Attraction at the 2015 European Group Travel Awards - Buy your Tickets to Titanic Belfast heresurpassing the Eiffel Tower & London Eye!
  • Dublin is ranked as the Top City to Live in Ireland and the UK, according to Mercer’s 2015 Quality of Living Rankings - beating Belfast, Edinburgh & London!
  • The Giant's Causeway in Northern Ireland makes Rough Guides list of Seriously Weird Places from Around the World
  • Two Irish B&B's make Tripadvisor's Top 10 B&B's in the World - Shola Coach House, Portrush, Northern Ireland & Down Yonder B&B, Sligo.
  • Harvey's Point Hotel in Donegal Town has been listed Tripadvisor's #18 Hotel in the World 2015.
  • Westport and Kinsale have been unveiled as Ireland's Top Tourism Towns at the 2014 Fáilte Ireland Tourism Awards.
  • Ireland has been named as one of the Top 10 Countries to Visit in 2015, by Lonely Planet!
  • Northern Ireland was listed number 2 in Lonely Planet's 'Top 10 Wonders of the Small-Screen World' thanks to Game of Thrones being filmed there.
  • Conde Nast Traveler Magazine named FOUR Irish hotels in their list of Top 10 European Resorts - Sheen Falls Lodge in Co. Kerry took the top spot, with Ashford Castle in Co. Mayo named the number 2 resort, the K Club in Co. Kildare took 4th place and Adare Manor in Co. Limerick being named #10. 
  • The Georgina Campbell 2015 Award Winners have been announced. Winners include the Beech Hill House Hotel, Derry which was named ‘Hotel of the Year’; Kai Café & Restaurant, Galway City named ‘Restaurant of the Year’; and The Long Dock, Carrigaholt, Co. Clare named ‘Pub of the Year’. 
  • AA Ireland recently named the 4* Maryborough Hotel and Spa in Cork their ‘AA Ireland Hotel of the Year 2014-2015’. This is one of Ireland’s most prestigious awards. 


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