Some 1,136,868 people visited the Cliffs of Moher Experience during 2022.
The numbers of FITs (fully independent travellers) went up by 5% on 2019 – the last full year of operation before the Covid-19 pandemic – while the majority (41%) of visitors were from the United States, with Republic of Ireland residents making up 29% of the overall visitor number. Other visiting nationalities included the UK (7%), Canada and Germany (both 4%), and Spain, France and Italy (each 3%). The attraction also recorded a 66% increase in online bookings, compared to 2019.
The aforementioned coincides with news that the Cliffs of Moher Experience has won a gold award and the accolade of ‘Best Visit in Ireland’ at the annual CIE Tours International Awards of Excellence.
Accepting the CIE Tours International Awards of Excellence Gold Award, Cathaoirleach of Clare County Council Tony O’Brien said that the win is a vote of confidence in the efforts of management and staff at the Cliffs of Moher to continually seek new ways of further enhancing the overall visitor experience at the attraction.
Bobby Kerr, chairperson of the board of the Cliffs of Moher Centre DAC, stated, “To receive such a high approval rating from our customers is an immense source of pride for everybody involved with the development and management of the Cliffs of Moher Experience. This award will undoubtedly help us throughout 2023, as we continue promote the cliffs to international visitors and the growing domestic market.”
Reflecting on a positive year, Cliffs of Moher Experience director Geraldine Enright said, “We are delighted with the impressive number of US visitors to the cliffs during 2022. The strong growth in FITs is especially welcome, as it ties in with our goal of sustainably developing the attraction for the benefit of the wider economy, the tourism sector, and the environment.”
Enright added, “It is important to see the overall number of online bookings grow, as visitors learn about what to do in the area, where to stay, and other experiences in Clare to visit. Our partner hotels also have reported direct revenue and referrals from the new Cliffs of Moher website, which was launched in late 2021. Meanwhile, trade accounted for 27% of visitors, with 17% coming from route licence operators, 80% of whom now have a second stop in Clare included on their licence.”
Cementing relationships with local craft producers has been another highlight for the Cliffs of Moher Experience during 2022, according to Enright, who also said, “We engaged with West Clare-based J.J. Corry Irish Whiskey to create a new series of Irish whiskeys finished in sherry casks in the iconic O’Brien’s Tower, and we launched our ‘Meet the Makers’ initiative, where ten local producers showcased their products directly at the Cliffs of Moher, which will be taken forward with the Clare and Cliffs of Moher Retail Expo on 19 and 20 February.”
© 2023 Hospitality Ireland – your source for the latest industry news. Article by Dave Simpson. Click subscribe to sign up for the Hospitality Ireland print edition.