Forget Paris, Berlin and even Helsinki! Two Northern Ireland towns have popped up on a list of the top trending European destinations for mini-breaks among the Irish.
The Irish love to travel, in fact, we’re known for it! Why do you think one of the most popular Irish pubs in the world is in Phuket in Thailand!? However, new information from AirBnB shows that the Irish are opting for mini-breaks at home as well as around Europe, and it’s the town of Enniskillen, in County Fermanagh, and Derry town, that has been taking their fancy.
Read more: Fall in love with Ireland: 9 autumn adventures you can't miss
230,000 Irish guests have booked European breaks outside of Ireland in the months leading up to Christmas and Airbnb has revealed where most of them are traveling.
Here are the results, by guest arrival growth:
Naples, Italy - 159%
Rovaniemi, Finland - 120%
Bath, England, UK - 97%
Carcassonne, France - 94%
Enniskillen, Northern Ireland, UK - 82%
Derry, Northern Ireland, UK - 82%
Vienna, Austria - 81%
Liverpool, England, UK - 77%
London, England, UK - 71%
Antibes, France - 64%
We just love this! And why wouldn’t two handsome towns on the island of Ireland be as good as any to take a mini-break to?
Enniskillen, Country Fermangh
Enniskillen is the County Town of Fermanagh, located on the natural island which separates the Upper and Lower sections of Lough Erne. The town, which has a population of c 11.500 is built along the long, narrow Main Street, which actually changes name six times along its length. The town center has a real sense of bustle and life as well as imbuing the shops with their own unique character.
Read more: 24 hours in the historic County Fermanagh town of Enniskillen
Derry, County Derry
Derry is the second largest city in the province of Ulster. It stands on a hill on the Foyle estuary and has been an important sea port for most of its history. The town is notable for its strong 17th-century defense walls and deep history as well as it’s friendly people and a great deal of “craic”.
Further afield in Europe!
While the staycation in Ireland seems to be popular this year, so too are mini-breaks to the rest of Europe.
Naples, famed for the hustle-bustle of its narrow streets, Roman ruins and Neapolitan dishes, tops the list, seeing the biggest surge in popularity with Irish travelers, enjoying an Irish guest arrival growth of 159% between now and mid-December.
With Christmas just around the corner, Rovaniemi, the capital of Lapland, ranks second in the top trending European destinations for Irish guests travelling with Airbnb. The official home of Santa is expecting a 120% increase of Irish guest arrivals this winter, and those are likely to be in search of an authentic winter wonderland experience in the arctic circle - we can already hear the sleigh bells ringing!
Other European cities steeped in culture, such as Bath, UK (97%), Carcassonne, France (94%) and Vienna, Austria (81%) have seen a surge in popularity amongst Irish guests, compared to the same time last year.
Where would you travel in Europe, apart from the Republic of Ireland, if you visited? Let us know in the comments section below.
Read more: Amazing sites in Northern Ireland that will get you booking your next vacation