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    New app launches for Dubline Discovery Trail

    New app launches for Dubline Discovery Trail
    Minister Varadkar launches the new Dubline App

    Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport Leo Varadkar launched a new mobile phone app for Fáilte Ireland’s Dubline project – a tourism trail through some of Dublin’s key landmarks. The Dubline Storymap is a new and innovative app and website package allowing visitors to explore the city while watching or listening to stories, told by Dubliners, about the hidden history of people and places along the Dubline. 

    The Dubline, a €4 million tourism project launched in May last year, is a unique cultural and heritage walking trail running across the city from College Green to Kilmainham.

    Speaking today Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport Leo Varadkar said –

    “The Dubline is all about telling the story of the city of Dublin. Now visitors can also hear the stories along the trail as told by real Dubliners, focusing on the hidden history and secrets along the way. This is a great way of bringing history to life.”

    Each story is told by a different local person from thrilling tales of Dublin at war to flaming rivers of whiskey, charming childhood memories to the wild animal gangs and the War Horse of Dublin.  The Dubline Storymap collects the most fascinating stories for locals and visitors to enjoy as they explore the city centre.  (To read more about a few of the stories see note below)

    The app is available for free for both Android and iPhone users. At each stop along the route the app presents the relevant story to listen to while you walk, or alternatively users can stop and watch a video of the story in crisp HD.  Along with the App, the Dubline Storymap website, http://dubline.storymap.ie, lets you explore the Dubline at your leisure.

    Tourism is currently worth over €1.5 billion to Dublin and the Dubline aims to grow this by incorporating technology, dynamic signage including wi-fi links, and dedicated branding. The goal is to give walkers an interactive, informative and enjoyable trail through the city.

    Fáilte Ireland CEO, Shaun Quinn today emphasised that Dublin is significant for overseas tourism to Ireland with three quarters of overseas visitors staying in the capital at some point in their trip to Ireland.  He commented -

    “Projects like the Dubline give Dublin a competitive edge when it comes to attracting more overseas visitors to the city. This is not only good for tourism but also for businesses, retailers and jobs in the city and beyond.

    “Increasingly, a successful tourism destination needs to be able to tell its story and to provide opportunities for visitors to engage with that narrative. We believe that the Dubline will allow us to do just that and will help us to raise our game in marketing Dublin as a world class destination.

    “For local Dubliners it’s a brilliant way to get a new perspective on their home town, and for new visitors it’s a great way become enthralled by Dublin culture and its people.”

    A 2012 study on the use of new technologies by tourists in Ireland, found that the use of Smartphone technology, social media and downloadable applications for mobile devices is growing rapidly, to the point where online use from mobile devices is expected to surpass traditional computer internet use by 2014.

    The study identified that visitors to Ireland from the US have the highest percentage of smartphone ownership (64%), followed by Italy and Canada (50% respectively), the UK (44%), Ireland (41%), France (32%), and Germany (29%).

    Close to 55% of tourists who own smartphones or other related mobile devices use their device while travelling in Ireland, and 31% booked an element of their trip using their mobile devices.  Mr Quinn added -

    “The 21st century tourist is not a passenger. In the digital age of the internet, iPads, X Boxes and smartphones; the modern traveller is hands-on and wants to actively engage with their environment. They want to learn more and do more in the places they visit.”

     A few of the interesting stories that will feature in the Dubline Storymap include:

    1. ‘Dutch Billy’: The tale of the most abused statue in Dublin - the statue of William of orange which stood on College Green. Looted, muddied, attacked, exploded - the statue had a very colourful life
    2. The Lucky Stone: Within St Audeons church lies ‘the lucky stone’, a stone long thought to possess supernatural powers of good luck. It’s almost been stolen several times, and has been at the centre of many odd stories for centuries right up to the present day
    3. Roland in the Deep: Deep in the vaults of St Audeons church lies the tomb of Roland Fitzeustace - a rogue among rogues in the 15th century whose corrupt exploits made him famous.
    4. Strongbow’s mini-me: Beside the colossal grave of Strongbow lies a peculiarity that has confused historians for centuries - a tiny grave of a man cut in half. Legends and fantastical tales have grown up about Strongbows sidekick in death!
    5. The fight for City Hall: In 1916 Sean Connolly lead a small detachment into City Hall to occupy the building. Hemmed in by snipers, the story of the occupation is one of drama and tragedy as the small group of rebels struggled against the odds.
    6. Liberty Belles - Churches and Menfolk: Once a month 12 childhood friends from the liberties meet to reminisce and chat. Here they talked about their childhoods in 40’s Dublin - the church dances, discovering how babies are made, and their many misadventures.
    7. Temple Bar Murders - On the foggy streets of 19th century Eustace Street, two policemen were killed by unknown assailants. An expert on the subject, Barry Kennerk tells the fascinating tale of mystery and murder.
    8. St Werburghs - ‘From riches to rags’: Once the wealthiest of churches and the place of worship for the ascendancy, everything changed suddenly for St Werburghs in the 1798 rebellion and it swiftly fell from grace to become one of the poorest parishes in Dublin.
    9. The Final speech of Robert Emmet: The passionate and fiery final speech from the docks by Robert Emmet, as performed at the place of his execution on Thomas Street.
    10. The Liberties Whiskey Fire: The Liberties was ravaged by a great flaming river of whiskey in the 1870’s, which caused massive confusion and drunkeness throughout the area.

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