The Minister of State with responsibility for Tourism and Sport, Michael Ring, has announced that the annual Fáilte Ireland Adventure and Activity Forum will this year be held in Westport.
The forum will be held in Hotel Westport on November 3 and 4 and significantly, for the first time, will be hosting a workshop which will offer the opportunity to network with approximately 40 key overseas tour operators interested in programming activity and adventure holidays in Ireland. In addition, these overseas operators will be offered a series of trips around the local region, showcasing the best the area has to offer for an activity-packed holiday to Ireland.
As in previous years, this annual event offers a unique opportunity for adventure and activity operators from all over Ireland to network and get the latest research and information on international best practice and developments. The event will feature a series of workshops and include a number of key guestspeakers from the activity and adventure arena.
The most recent research shows that the sector generates revenue of more than €1.1 billion (€830 million spent by overseas visitors and €320 million by domestic holiday makers ) annually. Those interested in activity pursuits spend on average 40 per cent more during their trip than other visitors.
International research indicates that the value of the global adventure market is $89 billion, with around 43 per cent of Europeans indicating that for their next holiday they would take a soft adventure trip.
Anticipating the conference, Fáilte Ireland Manager for the Leisure and Activities sector Ethna Murphy stressed: “We can now offer the best and most varied range of marine and countryside activity and adventure. We have great walks and trails all around the country which cater for all levels of ability. Fáilte Ireland has also invested in angling infrastructure, activity facilities, cycling routes and a host of other facilities. The challenge for tourism operators is to fully exploit both our natural environment and our manmade infrastructure to provide the best experience to our visitors and to entice as many visitors as possible, and this conference will provide a valuable opportunity to explore just that.”