Irish tourism chiefs to make world glow green on St Patrick’s Day

Tourism Ireland, the organisation responsible for promoting tourism to the Irish Republic, has plans to turn several of the world’s most famous landmarks green for a St Patrick’s Day tourism promotion.

Famous global attractions are to be illuminated with emerald green lights on March 17, the day that the Irish nation celebrates its patron saint. On the list to glow green are the Egyptian Pyramids, the statue of Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro, the Sydney Opera House, the Leaning Tower of Piza, Niagara Falls, the Burj al Arab hotel in Dubai, South Africa’s Table Mountain, the TV Tower in Berlin, the Welcome sign in Las Vegas and the statue of the Little Mermaid in Copenhagen, according to the Irish Times.

Other possible sites are still in abeyance, most notably Buckingham Palace in London. Irish tourism officials have written to the Queen asking her permission to light her palace in green for the day, but the chief executive of Tourism Ireland, Niall Gibbons, has yet to receive confirmation. He commented, ‘I have written to the private secretary [of] the Queen, but we haven’t had a reply yet, We wrote a couple of months ago, but it is a dialogue that is in progress. I wouldn’t be putting any pressure on people.’

The green initiative is intended to boosts Ireland’s tourism potential at a time when the country’s economy could certainly benefit from a cash injection. The historic visit of the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh to the Republic in 2011 did not open the tourism gates in the way that officials had hoped that it might, and visitor numbers actually fell back by 3 percent last year.

The St. Patrick’s Day project is hoped to raise the country’s tourism profile for a total cost of £29,400.