Ireland’s tourist board, Tourism Ireland, will be launching the world’s longest defined coastal touring route in March which will be known as The Wild Atlantic Way. Stretching for almost 2500km along the unspoiled and rugged western coastline of Ireland, The Wild Atlantic Way is set to be one of the country’s most awe inspiring coastal routes.
2013 proved to be a hugely successful year for Ireland following The Gathering Ireland campaign during which visitor numbers were estimated to have increased up to 8 million (an increase of almost 7.2%), with spending rising to €3.64 billion (an increase of by 6%).
Tourism Ireland aims to continue the positive growth into 2014 with the launch of the “Wild Atlantic Way” – Ireland’s first long-distance touring route. The route will stretch from the north west coast of the Inishowen Peninsula in Donegal to the most southern coast of Kinsale in County Cork. The tour offers visitors an opportunity to truly discover the hidden gems of the West Coast during their trip to Ireland and most importantly the route will connect attractions, activities and the fantastic coastal viewing spots.
The Wild Atlantic Way project has been earmarked with almost €8 million in government funding in budget 2014. The focus of the project is to package the west of Ireland experience by establishing a route of international standing that could rival some of the other great touring routes across the world. Experts within the travel industry feel that the project has the potential to become the European equivalent of the Great Ocean Road in Australia and the Garden Route in South Africa.
Thomas Redmond, One of Tourism Ireland’s representative’s said:
“Visitors will be encouraged to take part in the many unique experiences that can be enjoyed in the West of Ireland. They will be able to take part in sporting activities such as surfing, hiking, cycling, or sightseeing at the Cliffs of Moher, and the Ring of Kerry. They will also be able to enjoy unique Irish food including world-class local seafood, lamb and beef and of course meet with the locals who are world famous for their warm Irish welcome!”