NI has a very well established tourism industry. You can review the Tourism Plan at this link: —–>
The industry is overseen by the NI Government Tourist Bureau, the Accommodation and Tourism Association (ATA), and to a lessor extent the local Chamber of Commerce.
There are over 50 accommodation places, and more than 70 tours and experiences based in culture, history, marine, National Park, food, industry and DIY. There is (on average) at least an event each month catering to special interest groups for sports like lawn bowls, golf, shooting and archery; music like country music and jazz; and games and hobbies like scrabble and quilting. For more events information: —–>
There are two larger bus-based tour companies – Pinetree Tours and Baunti Escapes – and a number of smaller operators.
NI Tourism operates the Visitor Information Centre (P: Int+ 6723 22147 or E: firstname.lastname@example.org). They also recommend that you have travel insurance for your holiday here.
The very great majority of visitors use a hire car while on-island, and most of these are included with your accommodation. As is the case in other destinations, you will need to give credit card details (that will only be used for repairs to the car if required) to the car hire agent at the time of signing up for your hire car. If you don’t have a credit card you will have to provide $1,000 cash (or on a debit card) as a bond. If the credit card or cash has to be used you can claim the money back through your travel insurance.
In 2012-13 23,000 visitors came to NI. The demographic mix was as shown below.
The islands hosts several cruise ship visits each year, that vary in size from 100 passengers to 2,000. This industry sector is seen as offering significant potential for NI.
Opportunities in niche tourism abound despite the well established state of the industry. For example, the physical and environmental characteristics of the island provide significant opportunity for eco, health and wellness, environmental, volunteer, education and food-based tourism.
There is also opportunity in the MICE market (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, and Events) that could be particularly well served if you already have an established MICE presence in other destinations and are looking for alternatives and new places to reinvigorate existing customers. Think NI if this applies to you!