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Making the most of our coast

Joy Harron

Donegal is blessed with an exciting coastline. Its westerly shores are exposed to the full force of the Atlantic Ocean and it’s the longest in the country at 1,134km which constitutes over 17% of the total national coastline.

 

With the largest share of the Wild Atlantic Way route, it’s only natural that we view this proud and imposing landscape as an asset for Donegal and the future development of marine tourism.

 

Joy Harron (left) is Marine Tourism Marketing Development Officer at Donegal Tourism Ltd and based at the Donegal Public Service Centre, Drumlonagher, Donegal Town. With over 14 years experience in marketing, information technology and training with particular emphasis on tourism, she is in a unique position to help promote these assets to a world audience.

 

Joy is responsible for the implementation of a number of innovative marketing initiatives that will assist in the enhancement, development and marketing of the marine and water based tourism product around Donegal to a global audience.

 

 

“Donegal Tourism Ltd works closely with Donegal County Council on a lot of different projects such as Sliabh Liag, Cruise Tourism and Fanad Lighthouse by organising their social media and digital marketing campaigns, producing promotional material such as flags, booklets as well as meeting with various groups and advising them on how to go about getting their message out there.” 

Joy also specialises in training for groups on how to use social media and marketing for their particular projects.

 

“It’s a varied role trying to promote the county and all it has. We have a lot of opportunities here with the development of the Wild Atlantic Way and there are challenges to harness the various European projects to complement what we already have here in the county”.

 

“These include Cool Route which aims to develop sailing on what is called the northern periphery cruising route; Sail West’s MalinWaters project; the World Boat Angling Championships this September; the Tides of Time project which involves maritime history along our coast among others and SeaEurope which involves developing a conservation tourism project which in our case could be for the basking shark population that visit us every year.”

 

Joy believes there are great opportunities for Donegal in the area of marine recreation and tourism.

 

“We’re always looking to the future and to new exciting projects that will help us realise our potential and one of these, Tides of Time is already attracting interest from European partners.  I love discovering new things around our coast and just when you think you’ve heard it all, something new appears,” she adds.

 

The full potential of coastal and maritime tourism has yet to be fully realised in Donegal and the sustainable development of these natural resources could significantly contribute to Donegal's economic growth and employment.  It could also support the sustainable development of the county’s more remote coastal regions, endowing coastal communities with sustainable solutions for the future.

 

So aligned with our dramatic landscape, Joy and Donegal Tourism Ltd are bringing new tourism proposals, projects and concepts into the ever developing digital age to ensure our marine tourism sector is accessible for all and  ranked amongst the best in the world.

 

Key Points

For more information visit www.malinwaters.com or follow MalinWaters on Facebook and Twitter or call (074) 97 24431.

The next EU Federation of Nautical Tourism (FEDETON) assembly is to be held in Donegal

See what Donegal has to offer at www.govisitdonegal.com or follow GoVisitDonegal on Facebook and Twitter.

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