Services Projects 30 Insights 49 Podcasts 17
Careers About
Services Projects 30 Insights 49 Podcasts 17 Careers About
Keem Bay Visitor Management Plan
Strategy & Consulting
Client
Mayo County Council
Tags
#sustainabletourism
#visitormanagement
#responsibletourism
#destinationstewardship
#keembay
TOPOSOPHY has been spending time on site in the picturesque Keem Bay, Achill Island, on Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way addressing the rising challenges of increased tourism and its impacts on this sensitive natural landscape. Known for its breathtaking beauty and cultural significance, Keem Bay needed a delicate balance of product enhancement, experience development and responsible visitor management.
The Brief

Commissioned by Mayo County Council, TOPOSOPHY was tasked with creating a tailored visitor management and sustainable development plan for Keem Bay. The objective was to mitigate the impacts of growing tourism, particularly following the pandemic, which had strained the landscape’s limited infrastructure.

Objective 01

Develop a comprehensive plan to address the unique challenges of Keem Bay, ensuring sustainable and responsible tourism development and future management. 

Objective 02

Engage with the local community and stakeholders to listen to their concerns, incorporate their insights and instill a sense of ownership into the plan. 

Objective 03

Balance the opportunities for tourism and visitor experience development with the need to protect and preserve Keem Bay's natural and cultural heritage.

Objective 04

Create a practical and measurable implementation strategy with targeted interventions for effective and sustainable visitor management.

Approach

Our approach involved in-depth research, extensive local engagement and benchmarking. We spent considerable time in Keem Bay, understanding the perspective of residents of Achill Island and the area's ecological and infrastructural constraints. Drawing on our experience managing overtourism in the Greek Isles, we designed a plan that included several key elements. 

Key element 01

Comprehensive analysis of current visitor trends and environmental impacts.

Key element 02

Understanding of current multi-agency operations, land ownership, liabilities and legal responsibilities.  

Key element 03

Collaborative workshops with local businesses, community leaders, residents, environmental experts and stakeholder agencies.

Key element 04

Development of a strategic vision and multi-agency implementation plan focusing on sustainable practices, infrastructure improvement, visitor education, experience development and opportunities for enhanced destination stewardship. 

Deliverables

Following this in-depth process of research, extensive local engagement and on-site audit, TOPOSOPHY has outlined four sustainable management and development pillars – Renew, Protect, Respect, and Enhance. These strategic pillars will form the basis of the final implementation plan which is set to be completed by the end of the year. This integrated plan will consist of 20+ targeted actions to be delivered by multiple agencies and coordinated by Mayo County Council throughout 2024 and beyond.  

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