Diaspora event features in prestigious travel guide

Ireland has been listed by prestigious travel guide Fodor’s as one of the top 25 places in the world to visit next year.

The highly anticipated list, which is in its third year, covers everything from rising destinations and hot cities around the world to significant events.

As a result of The Gathering, Ireland made the grade for 2013, along with places such as England and Marseilles in France as well as far flung destinations like Easter Island and Burma.

Fodor’s Travel specifically highlights The Gathering as a reason for travellers to come to Ireland next year.

It says: “Throughout 2013, Ireland will host events, festivals, and reunions in honour of the more than 70 million people worldwide who claim Irish heritage. The Gathering welcomes those with Irish roots back to their ancestral homeland to reconnect with the country’s lush landscapes and vibrant cultures.

“Visitors can track their genealogies, explore the villages of their forebears, and mingle with current residents. More than just a celebration for those with Irish blood, The Gathering offers music festivals, pub crawls, and public gatherings in all corners of the country for those who are Irish in spirit as well.”

Welcoming the inclusion of Ireland on the Fodor’s list, Niall Gibbons, Tourism Ireland CEO, said it would “fully capitalise” on the opportunity to promote Ireland across the world.

“This accolade couldn’t have come at a better time as we get ready to kick off our year-long celebration of all things Irish, with The Gathering Ireland 2013.

“The high-profile listing in Fodor’s Travel ‘Go List’ of the top 25 places to visit in 2013 provides Tourism Ireland with yet another opportunity to promote Ireland as a “must see” destination in our promotional activities across the world. We intend to fully capitalise on the opportunities this accolade presents throughout 2013 and beyond,” he said.

Tourism Ireland is already involved in a programme of promotional activity around the globe this autumn to promote The Gathering — with a series of high-profile ministerial launches in key markets, an intensive programme of engagement with Gathering “enablers” and Irish business networks, as well as promotions to influential travel trade contacts and consumers.

Picture: English Market fishmonger Pat O'Connell, Cork's current Rose of Tralee Brid Ryan, Cork hurling legend Seán Og Ó hAilpín , Cork Airport Duty Manager Gareth Lyon, and Oceans7 Challenge swimmer Stephen Redmond, are the first Corkonians to get their hands on Rebel Passports

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