Teagasc Launch New Rural Tourism Publication
Teagasc has launched a new rural diversification publication called “Rural Tourism”, aimed at guiding rural dwellers on diversification opportunities in agri-tourism.
The Irish rural tourism sector generates €6bn every year and for some regions, it is a fundamental part of the local economy. What’s more, it’s growing. Teagasc Rural Development as part of the Commission for Economic Development in Rural Areas (CEDRA) initiated the Rural Tourism booklet to highlight opportunities for rural dwellers in creating on-farm diversification opportunities.
At the launch, Minister of state at the Department of Agriculture, Food and Marine Andrew Doyle said: “Rural Tourism is a perfect way to stimulate real impetus into encouraging footfall out of the towns and cities. There is such diversity in rural Ireland’s visitor activities and attractions, as well as in our specialist farm food producers, all of which make a very compelling case to venture out of the city boundaries. Over the past few years, fantastic diversified farm and rural businesses have opened up to visitors. There is a genuine focus on providing a great experience and developing unique local features and skills. This publication provides important guidance which complements the resurgent interest in Irish food, heritage and holidays.”
Barry Caslin from Teagasc said: “There are many unoccupied houses in rural Ireland. Many old family homes are unoccupied. Tourists are looking for locally loved places, off the beaten path. They want the personal experience of living in close proximity to the family farm and being a part of the experience. In this digital age, tourists are looking for something tangible which they can latch onto and share digitally on social media. The Rural Tourism publication provides a comprehensive guide on developing the concept of rural tourism, to business planning and marketing.”
In the Teagasc Rural Tourism booklet, former Teagasc tourism specialist Maria Heneghan outlines the steps for setting up on-farm holiday accommodation, in the form of bed and breakfast or self-catering cottages. She also looks at other choices of accommodation such as glamping, pods, shepherds huts and yurts.