Tourism is Ireland’s largest indigenous industry employing 300,000 people and worth more than €6 billion in 2019. The COVID-19 pandemic is an unprecedented challenge for Irish tourism which is bearing the brunt of the immediate fallout.
But who are the faces behind the tourism industry in County Kildare? Over the next few weeks, we’ll be featuring Kildare’s tourism leaders, and showcasing their amazing products and services. First up is Vincent Butler.
Vincent has 30 years’ experience in the tourism industry. His career has spanned many different areas; tour guide, tour director, expedition leader, heritage tourism consultant, tour guide trainer and archaeologist.
His roles include lecturing onboard the expedition cruise ship “The National Geographic Explorer” for Lindblad Expeditions and hosting on the Belmond Grand Hibernian luxury train. He designs, books and leads heritage-based tours across Ireland, Scotland, Wales and England. He also lectures extensively on a wide variety of heritage subjects and runs tour director and tour guide training programmes.
What’s the best thing about your work?
“Every day there’s something different to experience – whether I’m meeting new people, dealing with new challenges, adding to my knowledge and skills or experiencing new places, people and culture.”
How has Covid-19 impacted your business?
“The business is split 50/50 between domestic and international. The foreseeable future is looking challenging as all tours and training programmes have been cancelled. I‘m hoping to get up and running again in spring 2021.”
What can people expect from your product?
“I offer high end bespoke specialist lectures and tours which showcase a broad spectrum of Ireland’s natural, built, and cultural heritage. These can be tailored to the audience’s needs – whether they’re specialists or non-specialists.”
Want to get in touch?
We highly recommend Vincent’s amazing book, “Sixty Photographs for Simon”. The book is an eclectic collection of images harvested from an extensive archive that Vincent compiled over a period of two decades during work-related travel. Textured and multi-layered, the photographs include stunning landscape vistas, intimate cultural vignettes and captivating wildlife encounters. They are a celebration of the intricate and mutually dependent tapestries of natural and human diversity that exist on our wonderful planet and draw attention to the uniqueness, fragility and precious nature of both. All profits go to the Simon Community.