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Ireland named 'best destination in Europe' by US travel publication

It’s the third year in a row Ireland has picked up the award from Travel Weekly.

shutterstock_200134982 View from Skellig Michael to Little Skellig, in Co Kerry. Source: Shutterstock/Stefan Missing

TOURISM CHIEFS ARE hailing another accolade from US travel sector ‘bible’ Travel Weekly, after Ireland was named as Europe’s ‘best destination’ by the publication.

It’s the third year in a row Ireland has picked up the award.

“We are delighted that Ireland has been singled out for this award in the United States,” Tourism Ireland CEO Niall Gibbons said in a statement.

Travellers nowadays have tremendous choice, which makes it more important than ever for us to ensure the island of Ireland stands out from other destinations.

Figures released at the end of last month showed more tourists had visited Ireland in 2016 than ever before. The CSO stats showed an 11.6% increase in overseas visits to the country between January and October.

Despite the fact that the country is now on course for nine million tourists this year, Fáilte Ireland’s CEO Shaun Quinn urged caution and warned against complacency in the sector.

He said:

However, unexpected events during the year – such as Brexit – serve as a warning that we can take nothing in life for granted and are a good antidote to any creeping complacency in the tourism sector.

Gibbons said in his statement today that by the year’s end “we will have welcomed about 1.6 million American and Canadian visitors, delivering revenue of €1.4 billion for the economy throughout 2016″.

Travel Weekly is the leading weekly paper for American travel agents, and some 15,000 of its readers voted in the various categories earlier this year.

In case you were wondering, the ‘best destination’ for Africa this year was South Africa, the best US state was Hawaii and the favourite destination for the Asia/Pacific region was Australia.

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