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  • Top Visitor Attractions in 2015 Revealed

    Top Visitor Attractions in 2015 Revealed

    Guinness Storehouse top fee-paying choice while National Gallery of Ireland most popular free attraction


    Fáilte Ireland, today, have published their annual list of Ireland’s top visitor attractions with the Guinness Storehouse once again a top choice for visitors coming to Ireland on holiday.

    Last year, the Guinness Storehouse welcomed almost 1.5 million visitors - an increase of almost 230,000 (18%) over the previous year’s performance. Amongst the nation’s fee-paying attractions, the Storehouse was followed closely by the Cliffs of Moher Visitor Experience and Dublin Zoo which both registered significant increases in paying visitors during 2015.

    1. Guinness Storehouse – 1,498,124 (+18%)
    2. Cliffs of Moher Visitor Experience – 1,251,574 (+16%)
    3. Dublin Zoo – 1,105,005 (+2.6%)
    4. National Aquatic Centre – 991,554 (-6.5%)
    5. Book of Kells – 767,996 (+18%)

    Amongst Irelands ‘free to enter’ attractions, the National Gallery of Ireland once again continues to lead the way with numbers up 21% to over 718,000. Also performing well were the National Botanic Gardens, National Museum of Ireland – Archaeology on Kildare Street and Doneraile Wildlife Park, Cork, all making the top five.  The Irish Museum of Modern Art climbed the rankings to third place recording impressive growth of 58% which can be attributed to a more extensive programme overall in 2015. 

    1. The National Gallery of Ireland – 718,637 (+21%)
    2. National Botanic Gardens – 553,348 (+2%)
    3. Irish Museum of Modern Art – 485,702 (+58%)
    4. National Museum of Ireland (Archaeology, Kildare St) – 457,057 (+2%)
    5. Doneraile Wildlife Park, Cork – 432,180 (-6%)

    Speaking today Minister of State for Tourism & Sport Patrick O’Donovan said –

    “The wealth of the variety of our visitor attractions, whether free or fee-paying, plays a significant part in adding to the positive experiences enjoyed by tourists when in Ireland. The government has committed significant investment over the last few years to develop both new and existing attractions, and these figures published today highlight how such investment can return dividends.”  

    Commenting on today’s figures, Paul Keeley Director of Business Development with Fáilte Ireland said –

    “The rise in visitor numbers across most sites last year reflects a very strong year of growth in 2015. We would expect to see similar rises across many attractions this year also as we enjoy another year of growth. Indeed, the top performing attraction – the Guinness Storehouse – welcomed 10,000 visitors on March 18th of this year which was a one day record for the attraction.

    Fáilte Ireland is fully committed to ensuring our tourism infrastructure, which includes our visitor attractions, remains relevant and attractive to all those arriving to our shores and we are committed to developing new or boosting existing sites through our current capital funding schemes. We need a strong regional spread of top attractions to ensure that our three brands – Dublin: A Breath of Fresh Air, the Wild Atlantic Way and Ireland’s Ancient East - are compelling for visitors and that Ireland remains poised to welcome and cater for ever greater numbers in the future.”  

    To view the full table of top fee-charging attractions click HERE and for free attractions click HERE. To compare with the previous year you can click HERE


    Free Attractions 2015
    The National Gallery of Ireland Dublin - 718,637
    National Botanic Gardens Dublin - 553,348
    Irish Museum of Modern Art Dublin - 485,702
    National Museum of Ireland - Archaeology, Kildare St Dublin - 457,057
    Doneraile Wildlife Park Cork - 432,180
    Farmleigh Dublin - 410,076
    Science Gallery at Trinity College Dublin Dublin - 409,891
    Newbridge Silverware Museum of Style Icons Kildare - 350,000
    Chester Beatty Library Dublin - 343,929
    National Museum of Ireland - Natural History, Merrion St Dublin - 320,528
    National Museum of Ireland - Decorative Arts & History, Collins Barracks Dublin - 295,820
    Holy Cross Abbey Tipperary - 210,000
    Connemara National Park Galway - 190,753
    Dublin City Gallery The Hugh Lane Dublin - 190,000
    Sliabh Liag Cliffs Donegal - 185,760
    Crawford Art Gallery Cork - 175,902
    Galway City Museum Galway - 174,556
    Drumcliffe Church & Audio Visual Presentation Sligo - 160,000
    Malin Head Viewing Point Donegal - 154,760
    Nicholas Mosse Pottery Kilkenny - 125,000
    National Museum of Ireland - Country Life, Turlough Park Mayo - 119,839
    Grianan of Aileach Donegal - 107,968
    Gallery of Photography Dublin - 86,000
    Glencar Waterfall Leitrim - 83,789
    Limerick City Gallery of Art Limerick - 82,525
    Louis Mulcahy Workshop Kerry - 77,760
    Ballyhoura Mountain Bike Trails Limerick - 70,000
    Kilmacurragh Gardens Wicklow - 67,083
    Duckett's Grove & Walled Garden Carlow - 55,000
    Gallarus Castle and Oratory Kerry - 51,816
    Burren Perfumery and Floral Centre Clare - 50,000
    UCC Visitors’ Centre Cork - 50,000


    Fee Charging Attractions 2015
    Guinness Storehouse Dublin - 1,498,124
    Cliffs of Moher Visitor Experience Clare - 1,251,574
    Dublin Zoo Dublin - 1,105,005
    National Aquatic Centre Dublin - 991,554
    Book of Kells Dublin - 767,996
    Tayto Park Meath - 750,000
    St Patrick's Cathedral Dublin - 532,042
    Fota Wildlife Park Cork - 436,386
    Blarney Castle Cork - 400,000
    Bunratty Castle & Folk Park Clare - 341,685
    Kilmainham Gaol Dublin - 326,635
    Rock of Cashel Tipperary - 300,749
    Kylemore Abbey & Garden Galway - 300,000
    Castletown House & Parklands Kildare - 297,691
    Kilkenny Castle Kilkenny - 282,588
    Old Jameson Distillery Dublin - 282,056
    Powerscourt House & Gardens Wicklow - 249,475
    Dublin Castle Dublin - 231,178
    Christ Church Cathedral Dublin - 195,888
    The House of Waterford Crystal Waterford - 177,000
    Glenveagh Castle and Grounds Donegal - 170,797
    Dublinia Dublin - 161,054
    Hill of Tara Meath - 159,686
    Clonmacnoise Offaly - 157,660
    Brú na Boinne Newgrange Meath - 150,125
    The National Wax Museum Plus Dublin - 146,212
    Westport House Mayo - 145,000
    Phoenix Park Visitor Centre Dublin - 141,582
    Foxford Woollen Mills Visitor Centre & Factory Tour Mayo - 140,000
    Aillwee Cave & Burren Birds of Prey Centre Clare - 140,000
    Aquadome Kerry - 137,885
    The GAA Museum & Croke Park Stadium Tour Dublin - 137,000
    Muckross House Kerry - 129,007
    Belvedere House Gardens and Park Westmeath - 126,503
    The Jameson Experience Midleton Cork - 125,000
    Wells House & Gardens Wexford - 122,000
    Irish National Stud & Japanese Gardens Kildare - 120,138
    Dún Aonghasa Galway - 120,104
    Airfield Estate Dublin - 116,175
    Viking Splash Tours Dublin - 114,600
    Skerries Mills Dublin - 109,641
    The Hunt Museum Limerick - 108,000
    King John's Castle Limerick - 107,076
    Russborough Wicklow - 105,000
    The Sheep & Wool Centre Galway - 105,000
    The Little Museum of Dublin Dublin - 101,076
    Glasnevin Museum Dublin - 100,463


    PHOTOS -  Link to a selection of top attraction photos
    https://www.irelandscontentpool.com/web/7cb10eea2eb0b3c1/top-attractions-2015/



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    Alex Connolly – Head of Communications
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