Failte Ireland says Donegal can improve on 10% tourism growth in 2013

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Fáilte Ireland says the ‘Wild Atlantic Way’ initiative has the potential to attract significant numbers of additional visitors into Donegal during 2014, building in the increase recorded in 2013.
The tourism body’s CEO Sean Quinn says Donegal saw significant growth in visitor numbers last year, much of which can be attributed to the work of local communities who seized on the possibilities offered by The Gathering.
Fáilte Ireland’s own research figures show that visitor numbers for the North West region were up an estimated 10% last year, with 62% of tourism firms in the recording significant overseas visitor growth.
As expected, much of this growth was driven by The Gathering, with Donegal finishing in the top ten in terms of Gatherings across the country with 195 events in the county.
Meanwhile, surveys of domestic and overseas holidaymakers, who visited the region between May and October 2013, showed that the friendliness and value to be found in the North West were stand-out features of a trip to the area.
26% of the visitors cited scenery as the main reason for visiting the area, with Glenveagh National Park,  Sliabh Liag and Inishowen the most popular destinations within the county.
The most popular activity was hiking and walking, with 42% of visitors to Donegal citing it, much higher than the national average of 20%. History and culture, traditional music and water-based activities were also popular in Donegal.

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