#GalwayBay - A new mackerel-themed maritime festival has been proposed for Galway Bay this autumn – as the latest industry figures show tourism in the region is heavily concentrated in the summer months.
The Connacht Tribune reports on the 'Mackerel Festival' idea suggested at a Galway Chamber meeting last week as a way to rejuvenate Salthill.
Along the lines of the recent Dublin Bay Prawn Festival, the event would liven up the seaside suburb's renowned Promenade with a celebration of its local mackerel catch, which brings in big numbers each September.
The event was one of a number of ideas, including reopening Salthill's tourist office, put forward at the meeting last Tuesday (21 April) that agreed to form a committee to advance the most promising plans.
And the news comes as the latest figures from Fáilte Ireland show that a third of all visitors to Galway in 2014 were 'shoehorned' into the two high summer months.
According to the Connacht Tribune, a combined total of 33% of Galway visitors arrived in July and August last year.
June and September are the next busiest months with 24% of all visits between them, as opposed to just 3% in January – underlining the highly seasonal nature of the region's tourism industry.