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first_imgThere was disappointment for Donegal tourism bodies when Minister of State for Tourism and Sport, Michael Ring TD announced a shortlist of 15 towns and villages from across the country being considered for the 2015 Tourism Towns Awards.Minister Michael RingThe competition, now in its fourth year, is designed to recognise Irish towns and villages where the local community goes the extra mile to enhance their appeal to tourists.But not one Donegal town or village made it to the final fifteen, despite some trojan work from Ardara to Buncrana. The 15 towns will now be subject over the next few weeks to a series of unannounced inspections from a team of independent ‘secret shoppers’ who will visit each location and who will look for evidence of a high quality visitor experience and of involvement by the local community and businesses in delivering this experience.They will look at the quality of its attractions and sites of interest and how well the town promotes what they have to offer.Westport took home the overall crown for ‘Best Large Town’ award in 2014, with Kinsale picking up the ‘Best Small Town’ accolade.Today’s shortlist will be whittled down to a final list of ten “Highly Commended Tourism Towns” which will be announced at the National Tidy Towns Awards later this year. Subsequently, the overall winners for the Best Large and Best Small Tourism Town will be announced by Fáilte Ireland in November. Speaking about the competition, Minister Ring said “This award is all about recognising those Irish towns and villages which are really doing something special to make Ireland even more attractive for tourists. Each year the standard gets better and better and I am very much looking forward to hearing which towns make it into the top ten and who the overall winner will be later in the year. I want to express a sincere thanks to all those towns and communities involved and wish them the best of luck with the next stage of the competition.”Tourism Towns Long-listTown NameCounty1 Kilkenny City Kilkenny 2 Lismore in Waterford3 Killarney in Kerry4 Clonakilty in Cork5 Belmullet (Beal an Mhurtaigh) in Mayo 6 Ardmore in Waterford7 Tralee in Kerry8 Adare in Limerick9 Sneem in Kerry10 Carrick on Shannon in Leitrim11 Kenmare in Kerry12 Portmagee in Kerry13 Cobh in Cork14 Youghal in Cork15 Mountshannon in ClareDONEGAL TOWNS AND VILLAGES FAIL TO MAKE IRELAND’S LIST OF TOP TOURISM SPOTS was last modified: July 26th, 2015 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:donegalFailte IrelandTOURISM TOWNSlast_img read more