Where are Ireland’s Best Tourism Towns?

Published on : Tuesday, May 19, 2015

colourful_row_buildings_400x250Minister for Tourism and Sport, Michael Ring TD and Fáilte Ireland today invited applications from eligible towns across the country for the 2015 Tourism Towns Award.  A true Tourism Town must meet some minimum standards of presentation, with the eligible towns for the competition being those who ranked in the top 100 Tidy Towns for 2014. All eligible towns are being contacted directly with the closing date for applications on Friday 12th June 2015.


The award, now in its fourth year, designed by Fáilte Ireland, is all about recognising Irish towns and villages where the local community goes the extra mile to enhance their appeal to tourists. Last year Westport was crowned the 2014 National Large Tourism Town with Kinsale taking home the title of Small Tourism Town, with each receiving a certificate along with a €5,000 grant towards further developing itself as a tourism destination. Officially opening the call for applications, Minister Ring said: “This award is all about recognising Irish towns and villages which have really gone the extra mile to make Ireland even more attractive for tourists.  Tourism isn’t just a business, it’s a community industry and that’s why the whole community has a role in supporting tourism.


I would encourage all the eligible towns to apply to Fáilte Ireland this year and look forward to hearing the overall winners later in the year.” The award will continue to focus on how participating towns have developed their local area in the following key tourism areas:

• Sense of Place – how the town tells its own unique story to visitors, what’s special about it, and what distinguishes it from other towns;

• Local Involvement – how the local community works together to provide an authentic visitor experience;

• Tourism Experiences – what the town has to offer visitors;

• Promotion of the town – how the town takes a unified approach to marketing and promoting the town into a “tourism town”. Paddy Mathews, Head of Investment & Innovation with Fáilte Ireland emphasised the important characteristics of a tourism town and the how the award scheme seeks to recognise them:

“For us a good tourism town is all about the role of the community in welcoming visitors and telling the story of the local area which adds significantly to the enjoyment that visitors have.

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