An innovative mobile phone application illustrating a unique view of Inishowen is due to be launched at next weekend’s Colgan Heritage Weekend in Carndonagh.
The free travel iPhone App has over 300 points of interest and things to do in Inishowen – from hill walking to fishing, offbeat to local legends, bird watching to scenic spots. It also demonstrates how state-of-the-art technology can be used to promote tourism.
Creator John Ward (below), from navigatour, says the app is a “one of its kind” and “completely unlike anything else in the country”.
“This app will put Inishowen head and shoulders above other places in the country. I’ve seen other app for towns throughout Ireland, but none like this. This tells you everything you should know and don’t know about Inishowen.
“I see it as a way of finding ‘hidden Ireland. Basically there are loads of different features to showcase everything excellent about Inishowen,”
John, who lives between Dublin and Malin Head, has donated his own time and effect to go into producing the perfect tourist tool.
“It’s been a leap of faith producing the app, the app is free and that is the nature of travel aids, as you want to help the people who are good enough to come to your area and generate some economic growth.
“We need to get this thing out there, it’s important and I think it will be a great asset and most importantly a valuable commodity for tourism in the peninsula. It’s out now and ready to download to your phone.”
To launch the app officially, John will be giving a talk on Saturday 25th June at the Colgan Heritage Weekend about tourism and technology entitled ‘Are we there yet?’ This will then be followed by the launch of the new iPhone App for Inishowen by Derry writer Sean McMahon.
“The theme of the weekend is emigration and from an immigrants point of view, it’s important to get the word about this app out there. They can act as ambassadors to spread the word about how great Inishowen is and what we have to offer.”
The talk is free and everyone is welcome to come along at 4.30pm, where John will explain his vision for how new technology can be used both to preserve an area’s culture, and to act as an essential tourism marketing tool for that area.
“The Colgan Heritage Weekend is great. The Sean Beatties and Dessie McCallions are the backbone of Inishowen. I feel blessed to have met and worked with them, and they are the ones who made the app so good, as anything is only as good as the content you’re given.”
John believes social media should also play a big part in marketing an area to the world.
“Social media is an extremely inexpensive marketing tool, it’s just a matter of filling in the content, I will be explaining all of this during the talk.
“We have everything from Doagh Island, the Maritime Museum, the Cairn, McGrory’s in Culdaff and loads more, and with the simple type of a word we can show you this through their phone.”
John also thanked Donegal County Council and the local councillors for their support in the project. The app works on iPhones and all other GPS platforms such as Garmin and TomTom. For full details of the talk and the iPhone launch, including an audio overview, see www.navigatour.ie/App_launch