Published on : Tuesday, October 7, 2014
Killarney will put on its best face as it welcomes the 700 international delegates to attend Fáilte Ireland’s , Adventure Travel World Summit in the INEC. This is the first time ever for Ireland to host this high profile event and it is expected to be a fantastic opportunity to sell the country to the most influential players within the adventure tourism sector – one of tourism’s fastest growing sectors.
Today, local tourism businesses with sponsorship from Kerry County Council have organised a street festival to welcome overseas delegates who are arriving to register for the event. Festivities include entertainment on the street from the Killarney School of Music throughout the day with food on offer supplied by Cully and Scully, Dingle Ice Cream and Scotts Hotel amongst others.
Delegates and members of the public can also engage with a specially arranged climbing wall, try their hand at abseiling down the side of Scotts Hotel or take part in some hurling and football-themed activities. All of Scott Street is now decked out in “Activity Gear” with a number of specialised Activity vehicles parked in the area. The street is also decorated with Wild Atlantic Way bunting and images of the coastal attraction also form the backdrop on the stage where performers are welcoming delegates. Festivities will culminate this evening with a “Ceili Mor”, out-door dancing for all to enjoy. Welcoming delegates Paschal Donohoe, Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport stressed the importance of hosting such a global event in Killarney – “As an industry, we have been working hard to promote Ireland as an outdoor adventure destination so the decision by the Adventure Travel Trade Association to hold its conference here in Killarney is a real boost.
It’s also a fantastic opportunity to promote Ireland to travellers all around the world who want an active outdoors break.” Speaking of the summit’s importance, Shaun Quinn, CEO Fáilte Ireland earlier this week said: “This is big – big for Kerry, big for the Wild Atlantic Way and big for Irish tourism. Ireland was very proud to host this prestigious event at a time when adventure tourism is high on our agenda and integral to growing visitor numbers on the Wild Atlantic way.” “It was an incredible coup for Ireland, and a huge mark of approval from the leaders of the global adventure trade, that our country had been chosen as a setting for the summit and I think that this very much reflects the fact that Ireland – while long recognised for its friendly people, its heritage and its culture – is increasingly also now being recognised as a destination with the assets that can deliver unique adventure experiences and compelling offers to visitors who love the great outdoors.”
Many of the 700 international delegates have already taken part in pre-summit “adventures” (tailored tours to showcase the best Ireland can offer) which ensured that activity tourism operators across the country had an opportunity to impress the world’s top experts in this sector. The direct economic impact for the Irish economy from hosting the summit is almost €1m, along with the significant marketing, industry education and global networking value it also provids. The global world adventure travel market is estimated to be worth almost $90 billion and in Ireland alone the sector is worth over €850 million. The profile of the Summit and the promotion which will took place during its proceedings will greatly strengthen Ireland’s hand as it seeks to grow revenue and jobs in this area.