Fine Gael Clare Senator, Martin Conway, has today welcomed the latest figures from the CSO, which show that overseas trips to Ireland were up 8.1% from March to May, compared with the same period last year.
“These are the best results in five years and I have no doubt that the growth in visitor numbers that we are currently experiencing will have a positive impact on job creation. These figures suggest that The Gathering is working well and is having a real effect on people’s interest in coming to Ireland.
“I am particularly encouraged by the figures from the Cliffs of Moher Visitor Experience, which show that visitor numbers for the year to date are 10.5% ahead of the same period for 2012, with group tour business performing particularly strongly.
“The introduction of new events to County Clare such as the Junior Tour of Ireland commencing this week and Ras na mBan scheduled for September are also providing a platform to attract international visitors to the county.
“The Government is really serious about tourism and the development of tourism infrastructure. So far this year in Clare, Shannon Airport has been unshackled from the constraints of the Dublin Airport Authority, a new walking route from Doolin to Liscannor via the Cliffs of Moher was introduced and funding was announced for a new Greenway linking Ennis with North Clare Tourism and the golf resort at Lahinch.
“These initiatives together with the Gathering have so far stimulated confidence and self-reliance in the tourism industry in the Mid-West Region. The important thing now is to keep up the good work across the tourism agencies, the industry and in local communities.”