Title: Pilgrimage through the eyes of the Irish 'Traveller' community

Authors: Kevin Griffin

Addresses: School of Hospitality Management and Tourism, Dublin Institute of Technology, Cathal Brugha Street, 1 Dublin, Ireland

Abstract: This paper is based on a keynote paper presented at an international conference entitled Tourism, Religion and Culture in Lecce, Italy in 2009. The main focus is on the Irish 'Traveller' Community, which numbers in the region of 22,369 persons (CSO, 2007). This subset of the Irish population is a unique, indigenous ethnic minority with their own shared history, culture, values, customs, traditions and even language. For the purpose of comparison, they are considered to be similar to Roma and Gipsy peoples throughout Europe, though recent genetics and DNA research suggests that their claim to be a unique/native group to Ireland, may indeed be founded in fact (Hough, 2011).

Keywords: religious tourism; religion; culture; Irish traveller community; pilgrimage sites; religious sites; traveller faith; Knock; spiritual; motivation; Ireland; sacred sites; cultural heritage.

DOI: 10.1504/IJTP.2012.049002

International Journal of Tourism Policy, 2012 Vol.4 No.2, pp.157 - 173

Published online: 14 Nov 2014 *

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