AS THE GATHERING enters its final days, there’s some good news for the Irish tourism industry.
Ireland has beat off stiff competition to be named the best tourism destination in a survey of more than 22,000 readers of a US travel magazine.
Travel industry bosses were presented at the award last night in Los Angeles by Global Traveler magazine, which asked frequent travellers to select their favourite destinations, airlines and hotels.
It is the tenth year of the Global Traveler awards and the second year in a row that Ireland has won.
More than one million people from North America visited Ireland this year, which Tourism Ireland says contributed around $1 billion (€730 million) to the Irish economy.
The summer time was the best for tourism in Ireland in the last six years, according to the Central Statistics Office, with more than 2.2 million trips to the country between July and September.
The head of Tourism Ireland said the award was good news for Ireland in the face of tough competition.
“Travellers nowadays have tremendous choice, which makes it more important than ever for us to ensure the island of Ireland stand out from other destinations – so this award is really good news, particularly as we prepare to kick off our extensive 2014 promotional drive in the all-important US market,” said Niall Gibbons.