TWO of Kilkenny’s key cultural and heritage organisations, Butler Gallery and the National Craft Gallery, were among a group of cultural experts who took part in Fáilte Ireland’s Cultural Insights Initiative. The representatives from Kilkenny gathered for a workshop in Wood Quay, Dublin, to discuss their learning to date and to work collectively on further developments of cultural tourism in Kilkenny.
Fáilte Ireland is currently working to assist cultural organisations in Kilkenny in maximising their own tourism potential and that of their destination. Through this initiative each organisation has worked very closely with Fáilte Ireland on identifying who they should be targeting and the most effective means of reaching them. They also researched and selected comparable overseas counterparts to learn from their activities and to establish on-going reciprocal relationships. As a result, several exciting and fruitful international partnerships have been formed.
Commenting on the importance of cultural tourism, Amanda Horan, Fáilte Ireland’s Client Services Officer for Kilkenny, said that by continuing to work closely with key cultural organisations, such as the Butler Gallery and the National Craft Gallery, the workshops will equip them with the necessary tourism skills and supports in maximising their own international appeal to drive more inward travel to Ireland.
“Our culture and heritage is a strong driver of tourism traffic to Ireland with 78% of our visitors citing interesting history/culture as a motivation for choosing Ireland for a holiday. With cultural tourists spending almost double the amount of a city-break tourist, it is estimated that the cultural tourism sector is worth €2 billion to the Irish economy every year,” Ms Horan said.