The New York Times did a story over the summer about how tourists from around the world are flocking to Northern Ireland, mostly because of the numerous Game of Thrones filming locations that dot the island. It was a pretty decent read. There was a map and everything. I bring it up because Ireland’s official tourism organization — named, accurately enough, I suppose, Tourism Ireland — recently developed their strategy for the next few years, and, yup, Game of Thrones it is.
Launching a Tourism Ireland strategy, Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster wants to increase overseas visitor numbers to more than 2m a year by 2016.
She said: “In order to attract new and repeat visitors, Tourism Ireland will be seeking to capitalise on the huge popularity of Game of Thrones.
“Golfing visitors will also continue to be a key sector,” she added. [BBC]
Now, I don’t want to tell you how to do your job, Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster, but it seems to me like there’s a really great idea staring you in the face here, and you’re not seeing it: Game of Thrones golf packages. Think about it. Caddies dressed like medieval prostitutes or members of the Night’s Watch, kites shaped like dragons being flown all over the grounds, water hazards filled with fake ships and set ablaze via catapulted flammable material, etc. It would be huge. Then, at the end, when everyone is walking back to the clubhouse, the groundskeeper jumps out and slits the throat of the person in the group with the worst score, and when you try to warn the next group to tee off about it they all stick their fingers in their ears and shout “NO SPOILERZ GEEZ.”