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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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