Tourism NI has commended the work of local tourism businesses in the Glens of Antrim area who have engaged in a successful business clustering programme.
Up to twenty local accommodation, food and activity providers meet regularly to discuss how best to position the local visitor assets and capitalise on visitor numbers to the Causeway Coastal Route. The local businesses work in partnership to offer visitor experiences that will attract visitors for overnight stays which will increase dwell time and visitor spend in the area.
Commenting on the positive visitor focused outputs of the cluster group Brian Connolly, Tourism NI Experience Development Officer said; “The Glens of Antrim cluster group has been collaborating for over a year now to put the visitor firmly at the heart of their tourism offering. From tailored marketing campaigns to sales offers, input from the cluster group alongside mentorship from Tourism NI and Tourism Ireland has resulted in new routes to market and increased volume of purchasable products from the Glens, enabling businesses to compete in the international market place.”
Fern Major of Antrim Glens Tourism, one of the cluster group members, said; “The Causeway Coastal Route is both one of Northern Ireland’s best tourism propositions and best kept secrets. While local tourism organisations such as Antrim Glens Tourism and Glenarm Tourism have always encouraged members to work together to attract more visitors to the area, joining forces with other businesses to work with Tourism NI through the Glens cluster group initiative has greatly strengthened our collective efforts to promote the stunning Causeway Coastal Route and Glens of Antrim to overseas visitors, develop the visitor experience locally and bring it to the attention of the global marketplace.“
Réamaí Mathers, The Causeway Coast and Glens Heritage Trust’s, Landscape Partnership Scheme Manager said “ With enchanting woods, waterfalls, riverside paths, impressive viewpoints and forest paths, the Glens of Antrim continue to offer something truly unique to domestic and international visitors. The business clustering programme has helped local businesses partner together like never before to position this beautiful part of the world and consequently drive visitor numbers and revenue. The progress we have made together is very encouraging and I do believe this is only the beginning and there are great things yet to come.”
Tourism cluster groups have been set up in the Glens of Antrim and Gobbins area with two additional groups being implemented in the Causeway Coast & Bivenenagh and Limavady areas in the new year.