Major US tour operator visits the district

21st April 2023

Collette 2023 Chair

Fermanagh and Omagh District Council was delighted to welcome over 230 members of the American tour company ‘Collette Vacations’ to showcase what the district has to offer for US visitors during the last week of March 2023.

Collette Vacations is an international travel operator and started their week by hosting their annual prestigious President’s Club Conference at the Lough Erne Resort Enniskillen.

Each year, Collette Vacations will nominate a destination to host the Presidents Club visit, and for 2023, they selected Northern Ireland and specifically the Fermanagh and Omagh district area.

The group arrived to the area on Sunday 26 March and stayed between the Lough Erne Golf Resort and the Killyhevlin Hotel to enjoy some of the best hospitality and tourism offers in the area.

That evening the group attended a welcome dinner at the Lough Erne Golf Resort where they enjoyed some local music by Maggie Maguire and members of the Knockmore Ceili band.

Following their annual conference on Monday 27 March, the group attended a community dine around experience in local restaurants around Enniskillen including 28 at the Hollow, Francos, Crowes Nest, Firehouse and Saddlers.

Throughout the remainder of their week, the group embarked on a series of familiarisation trips allowing the members to experience local food, accommodation, and visitor attractions first hand.

This included visits to the Enniskillen Taste Experience, The Boatyard Distillery, Lady of the Lake, Erne Water Taxi and The Ulster American Folk Park, Omagh to name but a few.

Councillor Barry McElduff, Chair of Fermanagh and Omagh District Council said:

I am delighted that Collette Vacations have chosen Northern Ireland for their 2023 Presidents Club tour including the Fermanagh and Omagh district.

We have some unique tourist attractions to offer local, national and international visitors including Lough Erne, Marble Arch Caves, Cuilcagh Mountain UNESCO Global Geopark, Enniskillen Castle, and three National Trust properties, Gortin Glen Forest Park, the Sperrins and the Ulster American Folk Park.”

The Council, Tourism NI and Waterways Ireland have recently recognised the huge potential for tourism post covid with the development of a Visitor Experience Development Plan (VEDP).

The VEDP is a 10-year destination roadmap that focuses on regenerative tourism that will deliver authentic tourism experiences while benefitting local communities, businesses and the environment.

It will let travellers immerse themselves into the districts culture their way. Travellers will have multiple opportunities to decide how they would like to experience what the district has to offer.

Unique tourism opportunities gives elite travel operators an opportunity to experience first-hand the wealth there is on that will in turn lead to an increase in traveller numbers into 2023 and beyond.

The Collette Vacations visit was organised by Tourism NI with partner support from Fermanagh and Omagh District Council, Fermanagh Lakeland Tourism and Enniskillen BID.