Conference Launch


Ireland’s Association for Adventure Tourism (IAAT) will hold its Annual Conference in the Mourne Mountains and Ring of Gullion destination on Wednesday 23rd & Thursday 24th November. This year’s event is with the support of our main sponsor Newry, Mourne & Down District Council, in conjunction with Tourism Northern Ireland and Fáilte Ireland.

Day one of the conference will offer delegates exciting local adventure activity options that showcase the world-class experiences available within the Visit Mourne destination. These activities will be followed that evening by a local tourism showcase event from 7pm, with live music and plenty of networking opportunities!

The second day will then feature a series of key insights from industry leaders through talks and panel discussions. Contributors already confirmed include John McGrillen (CEO, Tourism NI), Paul Kelly (CEO, Fáilte Ireland), Louise Finnegan (Tourism Ireland), Rob Rankin (Vagabond Tours), Pól O’Conghaile (Irish Independent) Esther Dobbin (National Trust), Peter Boland (Alliance for Insurance Reform), Damian Browne (Extreme Adventurer, Keynote), Joanne Stewart (Northern Ireland Tourism Alliance), Eoghan O’Mara Walsh (Irish Tourism Industry Confederation) and Martin McMullan (One Life Adventure). Check out the website for full details. 

IAAT Chief Executive Brendan Kenny said,  
“We’re absolutely thrilled to finally bring our Adventure Tourism Conference to Northern Ireland, and specifically to the Mourne Mountains and Ring of Gullion. It’s a vital period in the recovery of tourism for the island of Ireland and our sector is determined to play its part. The theme of this year’s event is ‘Adventure Island’ reflecting our determination for Ireland to realise the potential of becoming a world leader in adventure tourism. We look forward to delivering another two days of insight and inspiration, in such a breathtakingly beautiful corner of the world.” 

Councillor Michael Savage, Chairperson of Newry, Mourne & Down District Council said,
“We are proud to be the main event sponsor for the 2022 Adventure Tourism Conference. Adventure Tourism is one of the fastest growing and most exciting sectors within Irish tourism, playing a vital role in the success of the wider industry. We’re thrilled to be able to provide such a unique platform to showcase the adventure and beauty of the Mourne Mountains and Ring of Gullion, and I strongly encourage those travelling to the conference to take advantage of the local activities on offer.” 

IAAT Chair Shane Young added,
It’s fantastic to bring this year’s conference to Northern Ireland. This is our fourth year holding the Conference and, on the back of the success of our most recent event in Sligo, we look forward to delivering another two days of genuine benefit to all delegates attending. If you are involved in activity tourism in any capacity, we strongly recommend coming along.”

The event takes place in the iconic Slieve Donard Hotel in Newcastle, Co. Down with a range of exciting activities available locally as part of the two-day package option. 

For anyone involved in tourism & hospitality or with an interest in joining the industry, this conference is an excellent opportunity to engage with an exciting and rapidly growing sector. 

Full information and tickets will be available at  

Photo caption: Brendan Kenny CEO IAAT, Ireland’s Association for Adventure and Tourism, Eimear Flanagan Secretary IAAT and owner of ‘Away a Wee Walk’ Irish Walking Tours, Michael Weston General Manager Slieve Donard Resort & Spa, Martin McMullan Director Life Adventure Co, Sheena Dickson Tourism Manager Tourism NI Landscapes and Activities, Andy Patterson Assistant Director Tourism, Culture and Arts Newry, Mourne and Down District Council and Chairman Newry, Mourne and Down District Council, Councillor Michael Savage. Photo by Elizabeth Boyle

Comments are closed