Limerick is to be linked with the Wild Atlantic Way thanks to a new tourism strategy.
It is hoped that the strategy will attract over a million visitors and generate €300 million to the local economy.
Minister of State for Tourism and Fine Gael TD for Limerick, Patrick O’Donovan said: “We are delighted to introduce the Limerick Tourism Statement of Strategy. Tourism is a vital contributor to Limerick’s economy and this strategy will provide a roadmap for tourism development in Limerick City and County over the next five years.
“I am delighted to announce that Fáilte Ireland will examine, as part of the Wild Atlantic Way strategy for 2015-2019, the development of a series of loops off the Wild Atlantic Way to encourage greater spread of visitors, alleviate pressure from high traffic areas and present complementary visitor experiences.
“Fáilte Ireland will identify opportunities to present the region’s cultural and sporting heritage to visitors, in line with key strategic areas such as the Wild Atlantic Way and Business Tourism and Events.
He continued: “At present there are 709,000 combined overseas and domestic visitors to Limerick annually generating €206 million in revenue for the local economy.
“Tourism is a large employment sector in Limerick with approximately 8,000 people employed in over 850 enterprises in the tourism industry.
“The aim of this Tourism Strategy is to consistently grow annual tourism visitor numbers to over one million for Limerick and increase visitor revenue to over €300 million per annum.
“We want to make Limerick a ‘must-visit’ destination for both domestic and international visitors.
“We look forward to the implementation of the strategy in the coming years which will maximise Limerick’s potential as a tourism destination, thereby supporting job creation, investment opportunities, and economic growth.
“Overall, this strategy statement will enable us to connect to national brands, increase visitor stay, address seasonality issues, work with Shannon Airport and all tourism trade partners on marketing channels, develop new tourism products, deliver new festival and events, and help Limerick to exploit all its tourism assets, especially the River Shannon.