Donegal Marine Tourism Conference 2019

Donegal County Council in association with Donegal Tourism CLG and the CAPITEN project funded by the EU Atlantic Area Programme are pleased to host our Donegal Marine Tourism Conference 2019, which will take place on 5th and 6th September 2019. The venue will be the Redcastle Oceanfront Hotel & Spa, Inishowen. The theme is ‘Connecting our Coastline – A Transnational Approach to Sustainable Marine and Coastal Tourism’. This conference will take place over two days this year and will combine both keynote speakers, exhibitors and the Tourism Unit team from Donegal County Council will be providing information on getting listed on, the new Tourism Hub, plus other trade opportunities. 

We are delighted that multi-award winning marine biologist, wildlife cameraman and documentary producer, Doug Allan will be speaking at the conference.  Mr. Mark Rowlette, Programme Manager from Fáilte Ireland will provide and update on the Wild Atlantic Way and other trade opportunities. Local business owner William McElhinney from Wild Strands Caife in Inishowen will be telling us about his experiences in setting up a new business on the Wild Atlantic Way.

Dr. Peter Bolan, Senior Tourism Lecturer at the University of Ulster will be discussing cross-border marketing opportunities, creating unique tourism products and diversifying into new markets. Dr. Stephen Hynes from  SEMRU (Socio-Economic Marine Research Unit) in National University of Ireland, Galway will be discussing a survey of marine and coastal tourism activities in Ireland. We will have a representative from Emagine Media discussing new technologies for tourism promotion such as Virtual Reality. 

There will be a presentation from Sport Ireland on the development of Blueways including an introduction to the new development guide and accreditation scheme. Dr. Margaret Rae will Marine Institute including the new ‘Go Atlantic Blue’ initiative. Trish Hegarty from Inis Communications will be giving us tips for maximising the opportunities of the Donegal Connect initiative. Marine and Rural Resources expert and Managing Director of Islander Kelp Ltd, Kate Burns will be speaking on ‘making marine tourism work in peripheral regions’. Gwénael Le Maguer from the Université Bretagne Sud will deliver a workshop on designing and building eco-friendly boats as part of the CAPITEN project. 

Attendees will take away some great tips and advice to put into practical use in their own business or regions. There will be lots of useful information stands on the day. This is an excellent opportunity to network with those in the tourism sector. Q&A sessions will take place offering attendees the opportunity to discuss marine tourism topics with the expert panel of guest speakers.  

The Donegal Marine Tourism Conference 2019 is open to everyone with an interest in tourism and in particular marine tourism opportunities and development of County Donegal as a marine tourism destination of excellence.


This conference is hosted by Donegal County Council with the support of the CAPITEN project under the Atlantic Area Programme. The tickets are free of charge, refreshments and lunch will be included on both days. If you have any queries, please e-mail Joy Harron, Marine Tourism Officer, Donegal County Council on