THE Aghadoe Heights Hotel in Killarney was the venue for the June board meeting of Tourism Ireland, which took place today. The board members took the opportunity to meet with local tourism operators prior to the meeting, to discuss the tourism season and the extensive promotional programme which Tourism Ireland is undertaking to highlight Kerry, the Wild Atlantic Way and the island of Ireland around the world this year.

Speaking after the board meeting, Niall Gibbons, CEO of Tourism Ireland, said: “We were delighted to be in Killarney for this month’s board meeting and to have the chance to meet with representatives of the local tourism industry and to hear directly how their business is doing. It also afforded us the opportunity to discuss the extensive promotional programme which Tourism Ireland is undertaking around the world this year, to build on the success of 2016 and continue to grow overseas visitor numbers to the island of Ireland in 2017. Priority markets are the United States, Great Britain, Germany and France, but our promotions are also continuing in other key markets across the world – including Northern Europe, Southern Europe, Australia and New Zealand, as well as new and emerging markets like China and India.”

Kerry’s spectacular scenery, visitor attractions and events, as well as many other aspects of this part of Ireland, feature prominently in Tourism Ireland’s promotions around the world. Tourism Ireland profiles Kerry and the Wild Atlantic Way extensively on its global suite of websites,, which attracted more than 19.37 million unique visitors in 2016. Kerry is also highlighted through Tourism Ireland’s social media platforms – to its 3.9 million active Facebook fans and 403,000 followers on Twitter.

In 2016, Tourism Ireland helped generate almost €75 million worth of positive publicity for Kerry in key markets around the world, through press releases, press visits, e-newsletters and various media events.

Above: Allan O’Connor, Killarney Park Hotel; Maeve McGrath, Kerry Film Festival; Niall Gibbons, CEO of Tourism Ireland; Joan O’Shaughnessy, Chairman of Tourism Ireland; and Mark Murphy, Dingle Food Festival (and Fáilte Ireland food ambassador), before the Tourism Ireland board meeting at the Aghadoe Heights Hotel in Killarney. PICTURE: DON MACMONAGLE