This increase in visitor numbers mirrors current trends in Irish tourism, stated the Storehouse, which has seen a bumper 2016.
In 2016, visitors from mainland Europe made up the majority of visitors to Ireland’s leading national attraction, with over 30% of all guests travelling from the Continent. UK and US visitors made up for around a quarter of visitors respectively (UK: 27%, US: 23.7%).
The highest year-on-year growth was from the Netherlands which increased its visitor numbers by 41%. This directly matches the most recent CSO figures which saw a 31% growth in visitor numbers from the Benelux countries (Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg) – a trend that’s expected to continue with the announcement of additional flight routes to the Netherlands earlier in the year. Other key growth markets over the 12 months include Switzerland (23%) followed by Canada (26%), China (24%) and Spain (21%).
“Our increase in visitors is certainly supported by increased access, with new flights continually coming into the capital,” commented Aine Kavanagh, Media Manager of the Guinness Storehouse, “These make an instant impact on our business and are critical in driving growth in tourism to the capital.”
A 15% growth in passenger numbers and flight routes into Dublin with new flights to Ireland from the US, Germany and Scandinavia, paired with strong economies in the US and Mainland Europe played a big role in driving these figures.
Earlier in the year the Guinness Storehouse opened a new food experience, Guinness and Food, which focuses on matching each dish on the menu with a beer from the Guinness portfolio.