Castle Gardens are borough’s top tourist attraction, survey reveals

Antrim Castle Gardens.
Antrim Castle Gardens.

Antrim Castle Gardens and Clotworthy House have proven to be the top tourist attraction in the Antrim and Newtownabbey borough.

The attraction came top in the latest tourism figures for 2014, followed by Shane’s Castle and Museum at The Mill.

In the Mid and East Antrim Borough Council area, the Braid Arts Centre was crowned top, followed by Carrickfergus Castle and Portglenone Marina.

There were 1.1 million overnight trips in Mid and East Antrim, with £54 million spent, compared to 0.7 million overnight trips, with £37 million spent in the Antrim and 
Newtownabbey borough.

The figures are contained in the Northern Ireland Local Government District Tourism Statistics 2014, which were released last Thursday.

The survey’s findings are based on surveys of passengers at air and sea ports in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland - as well as household surveys - undertaken to identify overnight trips to Northern Ireland by people living outside the island of Ireland.

The statistics also revealed that 36 per cent of people visiting Mid and East Antrim were on holiday, 53 per cent visiting family, six per cent on business, and four per cent marking their reason for visiting as ‘other’.

In the Antrim and Newtownabbey area, 50 per cent were on holiday, 34 per cent visiting family, nine per cent on business and seven per cent ‘other’.