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Welcome to Factsonline.ie, a guide to supports for businesses operating in the water-based tourism and leisure sector.

The water-based tourism and leisure sector, which is based on Ireland's key natural resources of 4,000 miles of high quality coastal waters, 4,000 lakes, 75 major river catchments and over 450 miles of navigable inland waterways, is one of our major indigenous industries. Ireland's varied coastline offers a wide range of opportunities for marine tourism and recreation. The attraction of smooth sandy beaches, rocky shorelines, sea cliffs, the rolling waves of the Atlantic Seaboard, and our accessible offshore islands provides a significant resource for all kinds of water-based activities which, through tourism and recreational activity, make a significant contribution to the national income. 

To help support the future development of the sector, the Marine Institute has established a national R&D programme to address the sector's research, technological and developmental requirements. As part of this programme, the Institute provides services and advice in the marine area that supports the Government's national tourism and recreational strategies. The Institute also works closely with regional and local agencies, industry, representative bodies and voluntary and community groups to underpin development of the sector.

Access to information is vital for the development of a sustainable, vibrant industry, therefore the Institute felt it would be valuable to reproduce information to facilitate access to state supports and encourage interactions between the network of commercial enterprises that exist to service the needs of the sector. This guide aims to provide the business and research community with a widely accessible "one-stop-shop" for information on the water-based tourism and leisure sector.

  Water based tourism and leisure
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