Council CEO Joe MacGrath, Melissa Shiels and Jenny de Saules at Cahir Castle.
One of Ireland’s fastest growing county tourist trails, Tipperary’s ‘Butler Trail’, has been armed with a multi-lingual app for growing numbers of domestic and international tourists taking on the two-day experience.
The Butler Trail has been developed initially on already established ‘Butler’ tourism attractions in Cahir, Carrick-on-Suir and Clonmel but will be extended this year to take in the historic Butler of Ormond town of Roscrea at the northern end of the county and later to the other Butler strongholds, Nenagh and Thurles.
With the Butler Trail enjoying visitor growth of 13% since it was launched in 2012, promoters Tipperary Tourism and Fáilte Ireland have now teamed up to launch an audio explainer app – downloadable http://www.tipperary.com/butler-trail - that will help showcase captivating tales of opulence, battle, romance and more about this aristocratic dynasty.
The app was also designed with the growing European market for the Tipperary Tourism product in mind, with bilingual audio in French and German as well as English.
The mainland European market is the second fastest growing market for Tipperary, behind the US. The app adds to new signage for the route, with both elements funded by Fáilte Ireland under its Ireland’s Ancient East programme.
The Butlers were the most powerful aristocratic family in Tipperary for five turbulent centuries, having arrived in Ireland in the 12th century when Theobald Walter, an English nobleman, was given the title of ‘Chief Butler’, bestowing privileges on him such as having rights to a significant percentage of all wine imported into Ireland and even getting to serve the first glass of wine to the King on his coronation.
Most of the gentry family’s land was in Tipperary where they became the dominant family, building numerous castles and houses, both for defensive purposes and as ostentatious displays of their wealth.
The Butler Trail currently wraps around these attractions. It includes visits to Ireland’s second largest castle, the majestic Cahir Castle on the banks of the River Suir - a filming location for the iconic Excalibur movie.
It also features the famous Swiss Cottage – a unique hunting and romantic hideaway lodge that is a must see for tourists just two miles from Cahir, which is accessible by foot along the beautiful River Suir.
The driving trail takes in the magnificent Main Guard in Clonmel and the town walls that stopped Oliver Cromwell in his tracks – and the recently renovated Ormond Castle in Carrick-on-Suir. It also details many other local attractions along the route.
The Butler Trail is one of the fastest growing county trails in Ireland and is helping to drive the resurgence of Tipperary as a tourism destination, augmenting the likes of the Rock of Cashel, which has experienced 40% growth in visitor numbers since 2012, Lough Derg, Holycross Abbey, the Glen of Aherlow/Galtee Mountains and much more.