A VAST number of international landmarks dotted across the world will go green to mark St Patrick’s Day this year.
Tourism Ireland chiefs have confirmed today the full list of buildings due to take part in the government agency’s annual Global Greening initiative – which includes a number of new additions.
The list, which includes old favourites the London Eye, the Colosseum in Rome, the Leaning Tower of Pisa, the Sacré-Cœur Basilica and the Sleeping Beauty castle at Disneyland® in Paris, now boasts the Space Needle in Seattle, Chimo the Polar Bear statue in Ontario, the fountains in London’s Trafalgar Square and the San Mamés stadium in Bilbao – the home of Athletic Club Bilbao, for the first time.
Sydney’s Opera House also returns to the line-up for the first time since 2014.
More than 300 stadiums, statues, museums and towers are set to go green to celebrate Ireland’s national day.
Other new sites and buildings for 2018 include the Wawa Goose monument in Ontario and the Cochrane Polar Bear Habitat (also in Ontario), the National Football Museum in Manchester, the Palais de l’Europe (the seat of the Council of Europe) in Strasbourg, Beaugrenelle shopping centre in Paris, the Kunsthistorisches Museum and the Naturhistorisches Museum in Vienna, the Königsbau building in Stuttgart, Uilenburgersjoel Amsterdam, the Yokohama Marine Tower in Japan, Pen Monument in Hanoi, the Sammy Ofer Stadium in Haifa, as well as Vabaduse Väljak (Freedom Square) in Tallinn.
Tourism Ireland’s unique global campaign – now in its ninth year – continues the organisation’s promotional drive to grow overseas tourism to Ireland in 2018.
Following today’s announcement, Minister of State for Tourism and Sport, Brendan Griffin TD, said: "I am delighted to launch Tourism Ireland’s 2018 Global Greening initiative, which has now grown to become a significant worldwide reminder of both St Patrick’s Day itself and also of Ireland and its appeal as a visitor destination.
“The record growth in the number of tourists visiting Ireland in recent years bears testament to Tourism Ireland’s successful strategy of market diversification, implemented since 2014, and the Global Greening initiative is a very important element of this strategy.”
He added: “The St Patrick’s Day period provides a unique opportunity to promote Ireland on the international stage and to renew the strong bonds between Ireland, the global Irish abroad and our partners around the world.”
Niall Gibbons, CEO of Tourism Ireland, added: “This is the ninth year of Tourism Ireland’s Global Greening initiative and each year I am delighted to see even more well-known attractions and landmark sites wishing to get involved and join our St Patrick’s celebrations.
“People across the world instantly identify St Patrick’s Day with the island of Ireland and that heightened profile allows us to put the Ireland holiday experience in the spotlight – from Sydney to Seattle and from Rome to Rio de Janeiro.
"Our St Patrick’s programme this year will span Great Britain, Mainland Europe, North America, Australia, as well as emerging tourism markets such as China and India.”