Network of camping and glamping sites planned in 50 key locations

A tourism initiative could see a network of camping and glamping sites, as well as motorhome and motorhome pitches dotted along the country’s rivers, lakes and canals.

Waterways Ireland is exploring the possibility of developing up to 50 sites at key locations across both Northern Ireland and the Republic which will provide facilities for glamping and motorhomes.

The sites would be on the navigation systems operated by Waterways Ireland, including the Lower Bann, the Erne System, the Shannon-Erne Waterway, the Royal and Grand Canals, the Barrow and the Shannon.

Wild Atlantic Glamping on Bere Island.

The cross-border body responsible for managing and developing over 1,000 kilometers of inland waterways in the Republic and Northern Ireland has announced a feasibility study into the potential for developing a network of such sites.

Waterways Ireland said the suitability and scale of the potential for the development of glamping and motorhome sites near inland waterways had not been fully assessed to date, although market demand for such facilities would be high.

“Providing glamping and RV infrastructure along inland waterways has the potential to attract increased and diverse users to the waterway environment to experience recreational activities both on and off the water. water, including walking and cycling along our green and blue routes”, he mentioned.

“For the visitor, the waterfront locations are fascinating and unique as they offer immersive views of dark skies, breathtaking scenery and tranquility amidst the beauty of flora and fauna. rare fauna.”

Feasibility study

The organization has launched a call for tenders for the feasibility study, which could cost up to €150,000. This will inform Waterways Ireland’s future decisions on investment in infrastructure to facilitate these types of tourists and their accommodation needs.

Campervan holidays have become increasingly popular in Ireland.  Photo: David Creedon/Anzenberger
Campervan holidays have become increasingly popular in Ireland. Photo: David Creedon/Anzenberger

The successful bidder should review existing glamping and motorhome infrastructure near inland waterways, as well as assess the risk to Waterways Ireland if their property is developed for such facilities and provide a cost-benefit analysis of the proposal .

Waterways Ireland said it would also look at the need to invest in infrastructure for electric vehicle charging.

The organization said it is expected that the results of the study will eventually enable it to develop partnerships with various agencies, including local authorities, for the provision of such facilities in priority locations.