When people take domestic holidays in Ireland, they typically head West. However, there is a whole region in the East with a myriad of destinations and attractions that people are missing out on. So Fáilte Ireland created Ireland’s Ancient East – a new tourist region to develop the domestic tourist market in the East of Ireland.
The challenge with the region was that most Irish people had visited the area before, either as children or driving through it as a commuter corridor, and they believed they already knew what it had to offer. So, in creating this campaign we wanted to show Ireland’s Ancient East in a completely new way – rather than the green fields, cobblestoned streets and laughing people drinking Guinness typical of previous Irish tourist advertising. We wanted to give people a powerful, emotional reason to reassess the area and create a desire to visit Ireland’s Ancient East with their own children.
One of the most unique things about Ireland’s Ancient East are the stories you hear while you are there. Every visit will unearth some new gem or story that you will continue to retell for years after. And so the idea of our campaign was born – Great stories stay with you forever.
In order to bring the richness and longevity of these stories to life, we created a film entitled “Bedtime Stories” about a little boy who can’t get to sleep. His dad begins to tell him stories from a big orange book and they are transported to the wonderful landscapes of the region. They see Vikings battle in Dunmore Cave in Kilkenny, and IRA soldiers transported to the grim prison on Spike Island. They see an early Christian monk lighting beacons at the sight of the world’s oldest lighthouse at Hook Head, and an ancient Druid incanting on a Dolmen in the Cavan Burren.
Finally the little boy opens the book to read it by himself. To his surprise, the pages are blank. He smiles in admiration as he realizes that all the stories came from his dad’s own memories of Ireland’s Ancient East.