We need your help now

Support from readers like you keeps The Journal open.

You are visiting us because we have something you value. Independent, unbiased news that tells the truth. Advertising revenue goes some way to support our mission, but this year it has not been enough.

If you've seen value in our reporting, please contribute what you can, so we can continue to produce accurate and meaningful journalism. For everyone who needs it.

PA Wire
the force awakens

Tourism Ireland hopes this video will send Star Wars fans flocking to Skellig Michael

“We were just blown away by it, it’s an extraordinary place.”

TOURISM IRELAND HAS launched a video it hopes will lead to Star Wars fans visiting Skellig Michael.

The island off the coast of Kerry has received a lot of attention after a scene from Star Wars: The Force Awakens was shot there last year. It will also feature in the next film in the series.

The new video shows director JJ Abrams and other crew members discussing why they chose Skellig Michael as a location.

Martin Joy, the film’s supervising location manager, said they needed to film in a place “from another time and place”.

We were just blown away by (Skellig Michael), it’s an extraordinary place. It certainly fed into our Star Wars universe.

Tommy Harper, executive producer, added: “I remember when we all flew in, it was special and we knew it.”

discoverireland / YouTube

Tourism Ireland plans to share the video in 14 markets: Britain, the United States, Canada, Germany France, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, the Nordic region, Australia, New Zealand, India, the Gulf Cooperation Council and South Africa.

Tourism Minister Paschal Donohoe said: “The fact that Skellig Michael features in all its glory brings the dramatic scenery of Co Kerry and the broader Wild Atlantic Way to an audience of potentially hundreds of millions of people.

By the end of November 2015, we had surpassed our best ever year on record for the number of overseas visitors. We are determined to build on that.

The total annual earnings of the Irish tourism industry exceeded €7 billion for the first time last year.


There was some controversy surrounding filming on the island, which is a Unesco world heritage site.

The Office of Public Works and the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht have been keen to emphasise that no substantial damage was caused to the island.

Following the filming, some routine maintenance work was carried out by on-site staff.

Read: Skellig Michael’s obscurity is about to end ‘in a blaze of silver-screen glory’

Read: Did the Star Wars filming actually cause any damage to Skellig Michael?

Readers like you are keeping these stories free for everyone...
A mix of advertising and supporting contributions helps keep paywalls away from valuable information like this article. Over 5,000 readers like you have already stepped up and support us with a monthly payment or a once-off donation.

Your Voice
Readers Comments
    Submit a report
    Please help us understand how this comment violates our community guidelines.
    Thank you for the feedback
    Your feedback has been sent to our team for review.