Ireland’s ambassador came from outer space

Chris Hadfield
Chris Hadfield

The astronaut who became a YouTube sensation last year when he sang David Bowie’s ‘Space Oddity’ while in outer space is set to become an ambassador for Tourism Ireland.

Chris Hadfield
Chris Hadfield

Commander Chris Hadfield made a video of himself singing the classic song while he was floating around in the International Space Station and playing his guitar. He also tweeted pictures of earth from the space station. His video has been viewed more than 20 million times on YouTube.

Hadfield visited Ireland before he became a global sensation. His daughter studies at Trinity College Dublin.

He told the Irish Times: “We went hiking in Glendalough, attended the Jameson Dublin International Film Festival, drank Guinness from the rooftop panorama after the factory tour, attended Gaelic football and a hurling match (Dublin vs Cork), saw the Book of Kells, looked at a round tower, and had a chipper.”

Now he has been signed up by Tourism Ireland to help to showcase some of the country’s top attractions.

Hadfield and his wife Helene will take a tour of Ireland from Croke Park and the Guinness Storehouse in Dublin to the Glens of Antrim and Titanic Belfast. He will also be taught to speak Gaelic by school children in Donegal.

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Leo Varadkar, is delighted with Hadfield’s appointment. He said: “Having seen Ireland from space, it’s great to be able to give Chris Hadfield a closer look at what Ireland has to offer on the ground.”

“His enthusiasm and energy make him a great ambassador for Irish tourism, and should help to persuade many more to come and see Ireland close-up in 2014. I’m really delighted he has agreed to help us out.”

Tourism Ireland’s CEO, Niall Gibbons said: “We are delighted to welcome Chris Hadfield to Ireland. I would like to personally thank him for his tremendous generosity in agreeing to help us promote the island of Ireland around the world.”

Mr Hadfield says that as well as acting as ambassador he hopes to visit Ireland occasionally over the next few years while visiting his daughter in Dublin.

Have a look at Chris Hadfield’s famous video below

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