Encyclopedia Britannica

  • Entertainment & Pop Culture
  • Geography & Travel
  • Health & Medicine
  • Lifestyles & Social Issues
  • Philosophy & Religion
  • Politics, Law & Government
  • Sports & Recreation
  • Visual Arts
  • World History
  • On This Day in History
  • Biographies
  • Top Questions
  • Week In Review
  • Infographics
  • Demystified
  • Image Galleries
  • One Good Fact
  • Britannica Explains In these videos, Britannica explains a variety of topics and answers frequently asked questions.
  • Britannica Classics Check out these retro videos from Encyclopedia Britannica’s archives.
  • #WTFact Videos In #WTFact Britannica shares some of the most bizarre facts we can find.
  • This Time in History In these videos, find out what happened this month (or any month!) in history.
  • Demystified Videos In Demystified, Britannica has all the answers to your burning questions.
  • Student Portal Britannica is the ultimate student resource for key school subjects like history, government, literature, and more.
  • COVID-19 Portal While this global health crisis continues to evolve, it can be useful to look to past pandemics to better understand how to respond today.
  • 100 Women Britannica celebrates the centennial of the Nineteenth Amendment, highlighting suffragists and history-making politicians.
  • Britannica Beyond We’ve created a new place where questions are at the center of learning. Go ahead. Ask. We won’t mind.
  • Saving Earth Britannica Presents Earth’s To-Do List for the 21st Century. Learn about the major environmental problems facing our planet and what can be done about them!
  • SpaceNext50 Britannica presents SpaceNext50, From the race to the Moon to space stewardship, we explore a wide range of subjects that feed our curiosity about space!
  • Introduction

The origins of tourism

Technology and the democratization of international tourism.

Our editors will review what you’ve submitted and determine whether to revise the article.

Great Wall of China

tourism , the act and process of spending time away from home in pursuit of recreation, relaxation, and pleasure, while making use of the commercial provision of services. As such, tourism is a product of modern social arrangements, beginning in western Europe in the 17th century, although it has antecedents in Classical antiquity .

Tourism is distinguished from exploration in that tourists follow a “beaten path,” benefit from established systems of provision, and, as befits pleasure-seekers, are generally insulated from difficulty, danger, and embarrassment. Tourism, however, overlaps with other activities, interests, and processes, including, for example, pilgrimage . This gives rise to shared categories, such as “business tourism,” “sports tourism,” and “ medical tourism ” (international travel undertaken for the purpose of receiving medical care).

monk at Kyaiktiyo (Golden Rock) pagoda

By the early 21st century, international tourism had become one of the world’s most important economic activities, and its impact was becoming increasingly apparent from the Arctic to Antarctica . The history of tourism is therefore of great interest and importance. That history begins long before the coinage of the word tourist at the end of the 18th century. In the Western tradition, organized travel with supporting infrastructure , sightseeing, and an emphasis on essential destinations and experiences can be found in ancient Greece and Rome , which can lay claim to the origins of both “heritage tourism” (aimed at the celebration and appreciation of historic sites of recognized cultural importance) and beach resorts. The Seven Wonders of the World became tourist sites for Greeks and Romans.

Pilgrimage offers similar antecedents, bringing Eastern civilizations into play. Its religious goals coexist with defined routes, commercial hospitality, and an admixture of curiosity, adventure, and enjoyment among the motives of the participants. Pilgrimage to the earliest Buddhist sites began more than 2,000 years ago, although it is hard to define a transition from the makeshift privations of small groups of monks to recognizably tourist practices. Pilgrimage to Mecca is of similar antiquity. The tourist status of the hajj is problematic given the number of casualties that—even in the 21st century—continued to be suffered on the journey through the desert. The thermal spa as a tourist destination—regardless of the pilgrimage associations with the site as a holy well or sacred spring—is not necessarily a European invention, despite deriving its English-language label from Spa , an early resort in what is now Belgium. The oldest Japanese onsen ( hot springs ) were catering to bathers from at least the 6th century. Tourism has been a global phenomenon from its origins.

Modern tourism is an increasingly intensive, commercially organized, business-oriented set of activities whose roots can be found in the industrial and postindustrial West. The aristocratic grand tour of cultural sites in France , Germany , and especially Italy—including those associated with Classical Roman tourism—had its roots in the 16th century. It grew rapidly, however, expanding its geographical range to embrace Alpine scenery during the second half of the 18th century, in the intervals between European wars. (If truth is historically the first casualty of war, tourism is the second, although it may subsequently incorporate pilgrimages to graves and battlefield sites and even, by the late 20th century, to concentration camps .) As part of the grand tour’s expansion, its exclusivity was undermined as the expanding commercial, professional, and industrial middle ranks joined the landowning and political classes in aspiring to gain access to this rite of passage for their sons. By the early 19th century, European journeys for health, leisure , and culture became common practice among the middle classes, and paths to the acquisition of cultural capital (that array of knowledge, experience, and polish that was necessary to mix in polite society) were smoothed by guidebooks, primers, the development of art and souvenir markets, and carefully calibrated transport and accommodation systems.

Transport innovation was an essential enabler of tourism’s spread and democratization and its ultimate globalization . Beginning in the mid-19th century, the steamship and the railway brought greater comfort and speed and cheaper travel, in part because fewer overnight and intermediate stops were needed. Above all else, these innovations allowed for reliable time-tabling, essential for those who were tied to the discipline of the calendar if not the clock. The gaps in accessibility to these transport systems were steadily closing in the later 19th century, while the empire of steam was becoming global. Railways promoted domestic as well as international tourism, including short visits to the coast, city , and countryside which might last less than a day but fell clearly into the “tourism” category. Rail travel also made grand tour destinations more widely accessible, reinforcing existing tourism flows while contributing to tensions and clashes between classes and cultures among the tourists. By the late 19th century, steam navigation and railways were opening tourist destinations from Lapland to New Zealand , and the latter opened the first dedicated national tourist office in 1901.

Castries, Saint Lucia

After World War II , governments became interested in tourism as an invisible import and as a tool of diplomacy , but prior to this time international travel agencies took the lead in easing the complexities of tourist journeys. The most famous of these agencies was Britain’s Thomas Cook and Son organization, whose operations spread from Europe and the Middle East across the globe in the late 19th century. The role played by other firms (including the British tour organizers Frame’s and Henry Gaze and Sons) has been less visible to 21st-century observers, not least because these agencies did not preserve their records, but they were equally important. Shipping lines also promoted international tourism from the late 19th century onward. From the Norwegian fjords to the Caribbean , the pleasure cruise was already becoming a distinctive tourist experience before World War I , and transatlantic companies competed for middle-class tourism during the 1920s and ’30s. Between the World Wars, affluent Americans journeyed by air and sea to a variety of destinations in the Caribbean and Latin America .

Tourism became even bigger business internationally in the latter half of the 20th century as air travel was progressively deregulated and decoupled from “flag carriers” (national airlines). The airborne package tour to sunny coastal destinations became the basis of an enormous annual migration from northern Europe to the Mediterranean before extending to a growing variety of long-haul destinations, including Asian markets in the Pacific, and eventually bringing postcommunist Russians and eastern Europeans to the Mediterranean. Similar traffic flows expanded from the United States to Mexico and the Caribbean. In each case these developments built on older rail-, road-, and sea-travel patterns. The earliest package tours to the Mediterranean were by motor coach (bus) during the 1930s and postwar years. It was not until the late 1970s that Mediterranean sun and sea vacations became popular among working-class families in northern Europe; the label “ mass tourism,” which is often applied to this phenomenon, is misleading. Such holidays were experienced in a variety of ways because tourists had choices, and the destination resorts varied widely in history, culture, architecture, and visitor mix. From the 1990s the growth of flexible international travel through the rise of budget airlines, notably easyJet and Ryanair in Europe, opened a new mix of destinations. Some of these were former Soviet-bloc locales such as Prague and Riga , which appealed to weekend and short-break European tourists who constructed their own itineraries in negotiation with local service providers, mediated through the airlines’ special deals. In international tourism, globalization has not been a one-way process; it has entailed negotiation between hosts and guests.

8 types of tourism that you need to know

19 Jan 2023 8 MIN READ

Brought to you by TravelPerk , the #1 business travel platform.

The travel and tourism industry is a major contributor to local economies in many countries. Prior to the pandemic, the tourism sector accounted for 10.3% of global GDP , and is on track to recover.

But what are the different forms of tourism? How is each one defined?

In this article, we’ll look at 8 of the main types of tourism and also at the classification of the UNWTO (UN’s World Tourism Organization), which divides tourism into three main categories: domestic, inbound, and outbound tourism.

Let’s dive in.

The three tourism categories

Broadly speaking, there are three main forms of tourism based on the destination and country of departure, according to the UNWTO: domestic tourism, inbound tourism, and outbound tourism.

Domestic tourism

Domestic tourism is defined as traveling within your own country of residence, either for business or leisure purposes.

It’s usually much easier to organize than international travel, since you don’t need additional paperwork, health checks, and you can simply take a domestic flight, bus, or train ride to your destination. For example, if you live in London and go to Manchester for the weekend, this is domestic tourism.

Language barriers and culture shock are also not a factor in domestic tourism (at least not in the majority of cases), making it less stressful.

Inbound tourism

When you enter another country, this is inbound tourism for the destination country. For example, if you travel from the USA to Spain, this is inbound tourism for Spain.

Inbound tourism is also a form of international tourism. This means that you need to prepare all necessary paperwork in advance, as well as take care of additional formalities as needed, such as vaccinations and health checks.

Outbound tourism

In outbound tourism, you go from your own country to another one. If we take the same example as in the previous section, if you go from the USA to Spain, this is outbound tourism for the USA, since you’re leaving the country.

Outbound tourism is a form of international travel and comes with its own set of formal requirements.

Travel agents are familiar with those and might make traveling easier – but independent travelers can also venture on their own and take care of their own paperwork. Many online travel agencies are specialized in outbound tourism.

The 8 types of tourism according to motivation

We could also define the different tourism types based on the travelers’ motivations, goals, and needs. These can be broken down into 8 main types of tourism:

Business tourism

Business tourism or business travel is a subset of tourism in which travelers go to another location (domestic or international) for professional reasons, such as to:

Online booking has revolutionized business travel – and while there are many ways to manage business travel, among the most efficient options for travel managers and admin staff is to use a business travel platform such as TravelPerk. From one single platform you can plan, book, and manage travel plans as well as track travel spend. Plus, you can offset your carbon emissions with GreenPerk and change travel plans (even last minute!) with FlexiPerk and get 80% of your money back if you cancel up to 2 hours before traveling.

Sometimes, business travelers are extending their trips for leisure or are combining the two under what is now known as “Bleisure” (from business and leisure).

See how to save money on business travel

Please use a valid company email

Request demo

If you’d like to learn more about business travel and streamline travel management at your company to meet everyone’s needs, reduce stress, and optimize expenses, download TravelPerk’s Ultimate guide to travel management .

Leisure tourism

Leisure tourism is a broad category that can encompass many different things: adventure tourism, ecotourism, cultural tourism, urban tourism, and more.

Leisure tourism is simply defined as tourism during your free time, in which you relax and experience a different environment than your own.

Local tourist attractions are often a major focus of leisure tourism, although you might very well decide to chill in your resort complex and simply book a bunch of spa treatments, for example.

Food is also a major motivator for many leisure travelers: many tourists visit new destinations to taste authentic local foods. Food tourism can be considered a subset of leisure tourism.

Shopping tourism

Who doesn’t love coming back with a suitcase full of exotic items, brand-new clothes, or new gadgets?

Shopping tourism is a popular type of travel among those who want to get a hold of brands and objects that aren’t locally available, be it clothes, food, jewelry, souvenirs, electronics, or something entirely different.

Fashion tourism is a subset of shopping tourism and among the top tourist destinations for it are cities like Milan, New York, Paris, London, and more.

Cultural tourism

If you’re passionate about other cultures, cultural tourism is probably your idea of a dream vacation, where you get to experience another country’s cultural heritage, such as architectural monuments, literature, religion, festivals, theater, music, cuisine, and more.

Because of the rich tapestry of its history, Europe is a popular destination for cultural tourism, and many European countries see a large number of tourists each year.

For those who want to travel to experience different cultures, UNESCO’s list of world heritage sites might be a list worth exploring, as it regroups the most significant cultural and natural sites of the whole world.

Sports tourism

Sports or adventure tourism is another type of leisure tourism that is related to a sports activity, such as rafting, skiing, snowboarding, surfing, diving, cycling, and more. Package tours might make it easier to engage in sports tourism at remote locations, rather than organizing everything on your own.

The location of choice will depend on the sport you want to do. For example, if you’re into diving, you’ll want to look for places with well-preserved coral reefs and a good choice of diving schools, while if you’re into skiing or mountain biking, your top choice would obviously be a mountain location with ski-lifts or bicycle-friendly roads.

Teams traveling for sporting events tend to use the services of a travel management company like TravelPerk . There’s no need to spend hours searching online for accommodation that will fit your whole sports team: let TravelPerk do the work for you. With the largest travel inventory on the market, we can arrange flights, trains, car hire and accommodation so your team can focus on winning!

On the other hand, sports tourism might also be related to traveling to see a major sporting event, such as, for example, the Olympics or the FIFA World Cup.

Rural tourism

Rural tourism is popular with vacationers who need a break from the hustle and bustle of city life.

Typically, it’s a form of sustainable tourism where you go to remote, rural areas to experience a simpler lifestyle and a calmer, less polluted environment.

Local people might benefit from rural tourism in many different ways, while visitors might engage in different tourism activities, such as hiking, orienteering, hunting, fishing, and more.

Mountain tourism

If you love nature, going to the mountains might be the best way to spend your holidays. Mountain tourism is popular among sports enthusiasts, as it offers lots of opportunities to be active in nature: skiing, hiking, and mountain biking being just a few of the many.

Sustainability has been a major consideration in mountain tourism in recent years, because mountains often have fragile ecosystems that cannot tolerate a huge number of visitors or mass tourism. Itineraries follow mountain trails and visitors are often not allowed to stray off the path or camp outside designated areas.

Urban tourism

Urban tourism is a form of tourism that is hugely popular among different demographics, from backpackers to luxury travelers and from recent graduates to retirees.

Top urban tourist destinations in 2022 include Paris, Dubai, Amsterdam, Madrid, Rome, London, and New York, among others, and attract a large number of international tourists each year. In the top 100 list compiled by Euromonitor International, Europe is the most represented continent, with 40 cities out of 100.

Many people travel – but for completely different reasons

People travel for many different reasons and in many different ways – which means the travel industry has to adapt to travelers’ needs.

Beyond the ones we listed, there are plenty of other types of tourism, such as medical tourism, religious tourism, wellness tourism, dark tourism, and more. Broadly speaking, however, we could consider leisure and business tourism to be among the two main categories based on travelers’ motivation.

Make business travel simpler. Forever.

See our platform in action . Trusted by thousands of companies worldwide, TravelPerk makes business travel simpler to manage with more flexibility, full control of spending with easy reporting, and options to offset your carbon footprint.

Find hundreds of resources on all things business travel, from tips on traveling more sustainably, to advice on setting up a business travel policy, and managing your expenses. Our latest e-books   and  blog posts  have you covered.

Never miss another update. Stay in touch with us  on social  for the latest product releases, upcoming events, and articles fresh off the press.

Suggested articles

Main types of business travel and how to arrange accommodation

Main types of business travel and how to arrange accommodation

Travel Management

Business tourism 101: All you need to know

Business tourism 101: All you need to know

Travel Insights

types and forms of tourism

How to nail the 5 most common types of business meetings

Real life events

History of Travel and Tourism

Travel was inspired initially by the need for survival (food, shelter, and security), the desire to expand trade, and the quest to conquer. As the transportation system improved, the curiosity for transforming the vast and virgin world into a close neighborhood created a new industry, i.e., Travel and Tourism .

Types of Tourism

International tourism, inbound tourism.

This refers to tourists of outside origin entering a particular country. Traveling outside their host/native country to another country is called inbound tourism for the country where they are traveling. For example, when a tourist of Indian origin travels to Japan, it is  Inbound tourism for Japan because foreign tourists come to Japan.

Outbound Tourism

Domestic tourism, forms of tourism.

Some most basic forms of tourism are the following:

Classification of Tourism

3) Sports/Adventure : Trips taken by people with a view to playing golf, skiing and hiking, fall within this category.

Nature of Tourism

Tourism as a socio-economic phenomenon comprises the activities and experiences of tourists and visitors away from their home environment and are serviced by the travel and tourism industry and host destination. The sum total of this activity experience and services can be seen as a tourism product.

Importance of Tourism

Employment generation, infrastructure development, foreign exchange.

The people who travel to other countries spend a large amount of money on accommodation, transportation, sightseeing, shopping, etc. Thus, an inbound tourist is an important source of foreign exchange for any country.

Impacts of Tourism

Economic impacts, economics benefits, economic costs, social impacts, social benefits, social costs, cultural impacts, cultural benefits, cultural costs, environmental impact, environmental benefits, environmental costs, industries related to tourism, restaurants, retail and shopping, transportation, travel agencies, tour operators, tourist destinations, cultural industries, leisure, recreation, and sport, tourism products, charecterstatics of tourism products.

18 Different Types of Tourism | Globally Accepted

“Life is all about adventure, so pack your bags and start the tour.”

Different Types of Tourism

What is tourism.

Suppose your friend’s aim for the tour might differ from yours. For example, you may travel for recreation, but he may go for business.

Classification of Tourism

Var cid='9740644792';var pid='ca-pub-2738190591282686';var slotid='div-gpt-ad-theholidaystory_com-medrectangle-3-0';var ffid=1;var als=1021%1000;var container=document.getelementbyid(slotid);container.style.width='100%';var ins=document.createelement('ins');ins.id=slotid+'-asloaded';ins.classname='adsbygoogle ezasloaded';ins.dataset.adclient=pid;ins.dataset.adchannel=cid;if(ffid==2){ins.dataset.fullwidthresponsive='true';} ins.style.display='block';ins.style.minwidth=container.attributes.ezaw.value+'px';ins.style.width='100%';ins.style.height=container.attributes.ezah.value+'px';container.appendchild(ins);(adsbygoogle=window.adsbygoogle||[]).push({});window.ezostpixeladd(slotid,'stat_source_id',44);window.ezostpixeladd(slotid,'adsensetype',1);var lo=new mutationobserver(window.ezaslevent);lo.observe(document.getelementbyid(slotid+'-asloaded'),{attributes:true}); importance of tourism – why tourism is important.

Tourism has a direct impact on any country’s economy. The role of tourism in economic development is important. A vast amount of job possibilities can develop through public relations in tourism. From a traveller’s perspective, knowing another state/country’s taste culture is a great filling.

Please enable JavaScript

Mainly how many types of tourism are there

18 different types of tourism, 1. domestic tourism, 2. international tourism, 3. outbound tourism, 4. business tourism.

This tourist travels to meetings, officially gets together for conferences, etc.

5. Adventure Tourism

6. wildlife tourism, 7. medical tourism, 8. wellness tourism.

Ayurveda,  Yoga , Meditation, Panchakarma, and Rejuvenation Therapy are the oldest Therapy of treatments to improve health and the best way to develop wellness tourism.

9. Pilgrimage and Spiritual Tourism

10. cultural tourism, 11. dark tourism, 12. culinary tourism, 13. celebrity tourism or film tourism, 14. educational tourism.

It’s used as a tool to complement education by gathering travel experience. Many educational institutes combine these trends in primary schools and are compulsory in higher education.

15. Cruise Tourism

16. rural tourism.

There are many forms of tourism, and It’s divided into many parts. In this category, a tourist spends leisure time in rural areas or villages. Visitors can make a plan to visit the rural area for some days or a couple of months. 

17. Beach Tourism

Why is beach tourism important, negative impacts of beach tourism, 18. space tourism, there are different types of space tourism, space tourism cost, space tourism companies, space tourism advantages, top 13 list of space tourists, space tourism in india, forms of tourism, what is the main purpose of tourism, niche tourism, types of niche tourism, what is macro-niche.

Macro-niche tourism can be explained as a niche with broad customer interest categories such as rural tourism, Business tourism, sports tourism, medical tourism, environmental travel, etc.

What is Micro-Niche?

It is a small group trip, such as gastronomy tourism, cycling tourism, and geo-tourism.

Niche tourism in South Africa

Advantages of niche tourism, what are the different types of tourists, types of a tourist attraction, what is tourism planning, how do these tourism plans help us, main types of tourism planning, types of tourism activities, types of tourism packages.

For different categories of tourists, everybody needs a separate package. Let’s discuss the various types of Packages that are available.

1. Adventure Tourism package

2. wildlife tourism package, 3. medical tourism package , 4. pilgrimage tourism package, 5. eco-tourism package, 6. cultural tourism package, 7.   family tourism package, 8. honeymoon tourism package, 9. wellness tourism package, 10. cruise tourism package, what are tourism products, if(typeof ez_ad_units='undefined'){ez_ad_units.push([[250,250],'theholidaystory_com-narrow-sky-2','ezslot_14',194,'0','0'])};__ez_fad_position('div-gpt-ad-theholidaystory_com-narrow-sky-2-0'); types of tourism products , human-created tourism products if(typeof ez_ad_units='undefined'){ez_ad_units.push([[250,250],'theholidaystory_com-mobile-leaderboard-2','ezslot_12',196,'0','0'])};__ez_fad_position('div-gpt-ad-theholidaystory_com-mobile-leaderboard-2-0');, what are the different types of tourist destinations, if(typeof ez_ad_units='undefined'){ez_ad_units.push([[250,250],'theholidaystory_com-small-rectangle-1','ezslot_21',199,'0','0'])};__ez_fad_position('div-gpt-ad-theholidaystory_com-small-rectangle-1-0'); tourism destinations, if(typeof ez_ad_units='undefined'){ez_ad_units.push([[300,250],'theholidaystory_com-netboard-1','ezslot_15',600,'0','0'])};__ez_fad_position('div-gpt-ad-theholidaystory_com-netboard-1-0'); types of tourist attractions, how many types of tourism are there in india, is there anything about tourism that i’ve missed, a tour to grand canyon would fall under which type of tourism.

Where The Road Forks

35 Types of Tourism

Posted on Last updated: February 23, 2023

Categories Travel , Travel Destinations

Home » Travel » 35 Types of Tourism

There are a million different ways to travel. Some people prefer to be pampered in a luxury resort while others don’t even care if they have running water. Some people enjoy exploring crowded cities while others would rather venture as far from civilization as possible. To help you plan your next trip, this list outlines 35 types of tourism. Hopefully, it inspires you to tour the world a bit differently. 

One thing to keep in mind is that not all types of tourism will appeal to every traveler. Some are a bit controversial or unethical. Some are dangerous. A few might even be illegal. This article is designed to inform you of your options and give you some ideas for future trips. 

types and forms of tourism

1. Adventure Tourism

Adventure tourism is a broad category of tourism with multiple definitions. The overall goal of adventure tourism is to explore remote destinations, participate in adventure activities, and maybe even take a bit of risk.

Many adventure tourists participate in physically challenging outdoor activities during their trips such as mountaineering, rafting, rock climbing, kayaking, or hiking. Some adventure tours may require a particular set of skills. Some adventure tourists visit off-the-beaten-path destinations.

Five different types of adventure tourism exist including:

2. Dark Tourism

types and forms of tourism

Dark Tourism, a relatively new term, is defined as travel to an area where death, disaster, or tragedy occurred in the past. People visit these sites mostly for historic reasons or simply out of morbid curiosity. Humans seem to have a natural interest in death and disaster. Dark tourist sites are some of the most visited places in the world.

Dark Tourism Destinations include:

Some dark tourism sites are pretty controversial. Visiting war zones and slums cause ethical concerns among some groups of people. This is something to take into consideration before you go.

For more info, check out my complete dark tourism guide.

3. Ecotourism

types and forms of tourism

Ecotourists visit exotic destinations to view pristine, fragile, and undisturbed natural environments. Visiting places that have not been affected by human interference. The goal is to experience these places while leaving as little impact on the environment as possible. Ecotourism is sometimes referred to as sustainable tourism.

Ecotourists aim to leave the environment as it was or better than when they arrived. The focus is on conservation. Ecotourists try to improve the well being of the environment and local people in the region. Ecotourism is quickly gaining in popularity as more and more people become interested in conservation and environmentalism.

One major benefit to ecotourism is that some of the money that tourists bring into the country is put into preserving the environment that they are visiting. This makes for a very sustainable form of tourism.

types and forms of tourism

Popular Ecotourism Destinations

4. Voluntourism

Voluntourism is a combination of tourism and volunteering. A voluntourist travels to a destination to do volunteer work. Usually for a charity organization. In their off time, voluntourists usually explore their travel destination like a normal tourist. This is becoming a major part of the tourism industry.

The volunteer work could be building homes, working in agriculture, teaching, etc. Anyone can take a volunteer vacation but you really need to have an in-demand skill for the work to be worthwhile.

This is one of the more controversial types of tourism. Before taking a volunteer vacation, you have to do your homework to make sure that your work will be worthwhile. Sometimes volunteer work can do more harm than good.

Popular Voluntourism Destinations

Volunteering opportunities can be found all over the world. Generally, you’ll find more openings in developing countries than in developed countries. A few of the most popular voluntourism destinations include:

A few arguments against voluntourism include:

If you do choose to do volunteer work abroad while traveling, make sure that you understand and trust the organization that you are volunteering for.

5. Domestic Tourism

Domestic tourism is travel within the country in which you reside. This is sometimes referred to as a staycation. Domestic tourism offers an exciting and unique way to experience the beauty of your own country. You can enjoy domestic tourism wherever you live. Even if you don’t leave your city.

The classic road trip is probably the most popular form of domestic tourism. No matter where in the world you live, you can load up your car, motorcycle, or bicycle and set out on an adventure. Every country has camping and hiking opportunities. Domestic tourism is a fun and inexpensive way to explore your home country.

Domestic tourism is more common in some countries than in others. Generally, domestic tourism is more popular in larger countries. For example, domestic tourism is extremely popular in the United States, Japan, Germany, China, and India.

Domestic tourism is particularly popular in my home country, the United States. Because the country is so large and diverse, you could spend a lifetime traveling here and still not see it all. There are bustling cities, sandy beaches, and spectacular national parks to visit. Millions of Americans exclusively travel domestically.

In smaller countries, d omestic tourism options are more limited. Having said that, regardless of where you live, there are dozens of interesting sites to visit within a couple of hours of your home. You could even simply tour your home town. Even if you’ve lived there your whole life, there are sure to see places you’ve never been.

Benefits of Domestic Tourism include:

Domestic tourism may not be as exciting as international tourism. Staying in your home country isn’t s exotic as visiting a foreign country.

6. Medical Tourism

a hospital room

Medical tourism is travel for the purpose of receiving healthcare. This type of tourism is also called health tourism. A few of the most common procedures people travel for include cosmetic surgery, dental care, and cancer treatment. It is becoming increasingly common for people to travel abroad to buy prescription medications as well.

An entire industry is set up around medical tourism. For example, some doctors and dentists cater to foreigners traveling to their countries for treatment. They often hire English-speaking staff and may even offer hotel and food packages to make the process as easy as possible. The medical tourism industry is booming. This is quickly becoming a major part of the tourism industry in some countries.

Three reasons to take a medical tour include:

Popular Medical Tourism Destinations

7. Bicycle Tourism

types and forms of tourism

Bicycle tourism is travel by bicycle. The average bicycle tourist covers about 50 miles per day, camps at night, and cooks many of their own meals. All gear is carried in panniers or bikepacking bags on the bike.

The main benefit of this type of tourism is that you get to see parts of the world between cities. Most travelers just take a bus, train, or plane from town to town and miss out on the rural areas in between. When bicycle touring, you get to see every inch of the country that you’re touring. You can smell flowers and feel the topography of the land as you cycle up and down hills.

Bicycle touring is one of the cheapest ways to travel. Accommodation and transportation costs are cut to almost nothing because you camp every night and have your own transport with your bike. You end up saving a lot of money this way. Some frugal bicycle tourists can travel on less than $500 per month.

There are several different styles of bicycle touring. Some bicycle tourists prefer off-road riding while others prefer to stay on paved paths or roads. Off-road bicycle touring is often called bikepacking. Credit card touring is bicycle touring in comfort. Most credit card tourists pack light, stay in hotels every night, and eat most meals in restaurants. Expedition bicycle tourists travel long distances through exotic countries. Some bicycle tourists spend years crossing continents and cycling around the world.

Top Bicycle Tourism Destinations

8. Sex Tourism and Romance Tourism

Sex tourism is a controversial type of tourism that involves traveling for the purpose of having sex in different countries around the world. People may choose to do this because prostitution isn’t legal in their home country. Some people wish to fulfill a fantasy that they can’t achieve in real life. Others travel abroad for sex because it is cheaper than in their home country. This type of tourism is much more popular among men but women participate as well.

Popular Sex Tourism Destinations

Romance tourism is travel for the purpose of finding a husband or wife. Someone may participate in this type of tourism if they are unable to find the right person in their home country. Sometimes people who have immigrated abroad return to their home country to find a partner.

9. Motorcycle Tourism

types and forms of tourism

Motorcycle tourism is travel by motorcycle. This is a great way to see the world because you always have your own transportation. This means you don’t have to rely on buses or trains. You can stop wherever you want. The absolute freedom is hard to beat. Maybe the biggest benefit of motorcycle tourism is simply the fact that motorcycles are cool. You will make friends everywhere you go.

Adventure touring bikes are probably the most popular these days due to their comfort and off-road capabilities. You can explore places that the average cruiser or touring bike can’t reach. My last bike was a Suzuki DR 650. I regret selling it.

There are drawbacks to motorcycle tourism. Getting started traveling by motorcycle is pretty expensive. You have to buy a bike, protective riding gear, and learn to ride. This sets you back a minimum of a few thousand dollars before you even hit the road.

Some countries also require that you have a carnet du passage to enter with a vehicle. This is a bureaucratic process and also costs money. Shipping the bike between countries is a hassle and expensive as well. Motorcycle tourism is generally not for budget travelers.

Traveling between continents on a motorcycle is also a hassle. It usually involves putting the bike in a crate and shipping it. You can’t just hop on a plane to your next destination.

If you are on a tight budget, there is one way that you can experience motorcycle tourism on the cheap. Starting at about $150, you can buy your own motorcycle in Vietnam and ride it around much of Southeast Asia. For a step-by-step guide to doing this, check out my Guide to buying a motorcycle and riding through Vietnam. 

10. Cultural Tourism

Cultural tourism is a form of tourism where the goal is to seek out cultural experiences. On a cultural tour, you might attend festivals and events, visit historical sites and monuments, explore museums, and galleries, take language classes or cooking classes, and participate in traditional activities.

Cultural tourism is an increasingly popular form of travel as it allows people to immerse themselves in different cultures and gain a more global perspective. Cultural tourism also provides economic opportunities for locals.

A few different examples of culture include:

Culture is interesting because it varies so widely. In some parts of the world, you can travel just a few miles down the road and people completely change. They may speak a different language, eat different food, and pray to different gods. Human culture is diverse. Sometimes even shocking. This is a big part of the appeal of cultural tourism.

Cultural Tourism Activities

types and forms of tourism

Cultural Tourism Destinations

Every country has a different culture to learn about. Depending on where you come from, you may find some more interesting. A few of the most popular countries for cultural tourism include:

11. Rural Tourism

types and forms of tourism

These days, most of the world’s population lives in cities. Some travelers like to take a break from the fast-paced and stressful urban lifestyle and travel to slower-moving rural areas. This is rural tourism. Rural tourism usually involves living a rural lifestyle, experiencing local culture, and learning local history.

Rural tourism has a lot of overlap with cultural tourism and ecotourism. Because rural areas don’t offer many major tourist attractions, you’ll mostly spend your time learning about and experiencing the rural lifestyle. You’ll also spend much of your time enjoying the outdoors.

One major benefit of rural tourism is that it provides economic opportunities for locals by allowing them to offer services such as farm stays, guided tours, homestays, and meals. This is important because rural areas tend to be poorer than cities.

Rural Tourism Activities

Where to Stay in Rural Areas

Accommodation options are more limited in rural places. There just aren’t enough people to support a big chain hotel. Places you may stay while participating in rural tourism include:

Best Destinations for Rural Tourism

Every country except for a few city-states has some rural areas where tourists can visit. Some of the more popular rural tourism destinations include:

12. Tribal Tourism

types and forms of tourism

Tribal tourism involves travel to visit tribes or indigenous people that have had little contact with the outside world. The goal is to experience the culture and lifestyle of the locals. These areas are becoming rarer and rarer as the world becomes more developed and connected. There are only a few regions left on the planet where you can take an authentic tribal tour.

Many of the world’s tribes are no longer authentic. The people wear traditional clothing and basically put on a show for tourists. They may dance and perform ceremonies that their ancestors did. While it is interesting to see, it isn’t really authentic. There are a handful of places left where you can experience a real and thriving tribal culture.

This is another controversial form of tourism. Many people argue that tourism to these regions is voyeuristic. Like looking at animals in a zoo. Some complain that visiting these tribes degrades their culture. After all, local people will be introduced to modern ways of living and thinking. These are valid points that should be considered before visiting. Is it ethical to visit tribal regions? I’ll let you decide.

Tribal Tourism Destinations

13. Business Tourism

Business tourists in an airport

Business tourism is travel for the purpose of doing business. Some companies send employees abroad for meetings, conferences, consulting, negotiation, etc. While participating in business tourism, an employee is still doing work, just away from the office or home. During time off, a business tourist may have time to visit the tourist sites of the region that they are visiting. Oftentimes, other types of tourism are combined with business tourism.

Business tourism is different from being an expat, digital nomad, or living abroad because it is only temporary. Generally, a business tourist is someone who is working abroad for one year or less. Most business trips last less than a week. Business tourists generally stay in hotels or accommodation provided by the company that they work for.

Business is conducted all over the world. This type of travel is slightly less common than it used to be because of the internet. Many meetings can be conducted online over video. Business tourism is still common.

Some of the most common business tourism destinations include Berlin, Dubai, New York, Paris, Shanghai, Tokyo, and London.

14. Birth Tourism

Birth Tourism is a controversial form of tourism where a pregnant woman travels to a foreign country to give birth to her child. The main reason for this practice is so the child obtains citizenship in the country where it was born. Once the child has citizenship, the parents will generally use it as a means of obtaining citizenship for themselves. The baby is often referred to as an anchor baby.

Laws vary from country to country. In the past, birth tourism was much more common. Laws were much less strict and allowed pretty much anyone born within the country’s borders to become citizens from birth.

These days, most countries either don’t allow birth tourism or don’t grant citizenship to children born there unless they meet specific requirements. Usually, one of the parents also has to hold citizenship in order for the child to be eligible for citizenship. Birth tourism is still common in North and South America but has been abolished in most of the rest of the world.

15. Sports Tourism

types and forms of tourism

Sports Tourism is defined as travel for the purpose of watching or participating in a sporting event. This type of tourism could involve professional sports, armature sports, team sports, or individual sports. This type of tourism is one of the fastest-growing tourism sectors. Some of the world’s biggest events cater to sports tourists. These include:

Anyone who travels to watch a football game, basketball game, tennis match, auto race, etc. is also considered a sports tourist.

Those who travel to participate in sports are considered active sports tourists. The players and coaches and support all fall into this category of tourist. Some tourists travel to participate in extreme sports like skydiving, mountain climbing, mountain biking, surfing, skateboarding. These are also sports tourists.

16. Slum Tourism

types and forms of tourism

Slum tourism, also called ghetto tourism, involves travel to some of the poorest neighborhoods around the world. Tourists come to see what life is like for the poorest people on earth. Mostly out of curiosity.

This type of tourism is not new. It originated in the 19th century in the slums of New York and London where wealthy tourists would travel to see how the impoverished lived in the two cities. These days, slum tourism almost exclusively occurs in the developing world.

Slum tourism is another controversial type of tourism. Many people claim that it is unethical to tour slums because it basically treats people like zoo animals. You are essentially entertaining yourself by touring areas where people are living in extreme poverty. Traveling to people watch just doesn’t sit well with some.

While I understand this argument, these neighborhoods are public places where anyone is free to wander. For this reason, it’s an acceptable activity in my mind. You are simply visiting a neighborhood within a city.

Kibera slum in Nairobi, Kenya

Slum Tourism Destinations

17. Geneology Tourism

Genealogy tourism is a type of tourism where travelers visit the places their ancestors came from. This could be recent ancestry or distant ancestry. This type of tourism is much more common in countries with a high level of emigration.

Genealogy tourism is quickly growing in popularity because of the rise in interest in DNA testing from companies like Ancestry.com and 23andme.com. For less than $100 people can find out exactly where in the world their ancestors originated. As the technology develops, these services get more and more accurate. In some cases, they can pinpoint exact villages where your ancestors lived hundreds of years ago.

Some genealogy tourists visit places where they have much more recent roots. For example, if a couple immigrated to another country before having children, their child may wish to visit their parent’s homeland later in life. This is also considered genealogy tourism. In this case, the person may have living relatives in the place that they are visiting.

18. Package Tourism (Group Tourism)

a group tour

Package tourism is a type of travel where accommodation, transportation, and excursions are combined and sold in a single package. Sometimes meals, drinks, and guides are also included. This can be a private tour or a group tour. A package tour is also called a package vacation or package holiday.

The main draw of this type of tourism is the simplicity. You pay once and everything is done for you. It’s easy and stress-free. You don’t have to worry about finding a hotel, choosing a restaurant, or struggling to figure out public transportation systems. This is a style of tourism many beginner travelers choose to participate in because it requires basically zero planning.

Drawbacks to Package Tourism

Packaged Tourism Destinations

You can take a packaged tour wherever you want to go. Cruises and large resorts are popular packaged tour options. A handful of countries only allow tourists to visit if they are traveling on a packaged tour. These countries include:

Many travelers choose to take packaged tours to Africa. Check out my guide to overland tours vs independent travel for more info. 

19. Culinary Tourism (Food Tourism)

types and forms of tourism

Culinary tourism, also called food tourism, is travel for the purpose of exploring different types of food and drinks around the world. Many travelers consider a destination’s cuisine to be as important as the climate, scenery, or accommodation. The popularity of culinary tourism has exploded over the past decade.

Culinary Tourism Activities

types and forms of tourism

Culinary Tourism Destinations

Pretty much every country has at least one decent dish to try. Having said that, some countries just have better food than others. This could be for a number of reasons. Some parts of the world have benefited from trade and migration. New people come and bring their favorite foods along with them. Over the years, fusions develop and a new cuisine is born. Some parts of the world are just lucky and have unique flavors available in their region. Some of the top countries for food tourism include:

20. Wellness Tourism

Wellness tourism is travel for the purpose of increasing your health. This could be physical health or mental health. Wellness tourism often involves some sort of spiritual activity like yoga, meditation, or prayer for example. This is quickly becoming a major part of the tourism industry.

Wellness tourism is similar to medical tourism with one major difference. G enerally, w ellness tourists don’t have anything in particular wrong with their health. They travel to maintain or improve their quality of life in general. The goal is often to prevent future health problems. This style of tourism focuses on low stress and relaxation. This is the main distinction between wellness tourism and medical tourism.

Wellness Tourism Activities 

While it is generally agreed upon that vacationing is good for health and well-being, it has not yet been established whether wellness-related activities offer any benefit over normal vacation activities. Many of these activities can be fun and relaxing, but offer no benefits after the vacation is over.

types and forms of tourism

Top Destinations for Wellness Tourism

Wellness tourism is currently a very niche market. North America currently has the largest wellness tourism infrastructure followed by Europe. A few top destinations include:

21. Recreational Drug Tourism

Recreational drug tourism is travel for the reason of purchasing or using drugs. People travel to use drugs because they are illegal, difficult to obtain, or more expensive in their own country. This is different from medical tourism where people may travel to purchase prescription drugs. In the case of recreational drug tourism, the drugs are not for health purposes, rather just for fun.

Recreational Drug Tourism Destinations

This is a very controversial type of tourism because many people around the world are against the use of drugs for moral, religious, or economic reasons.

22. Nautical Tourism

types and forms of tourism

Nautical tourism as a type of travel involving boating. This includes both motor boating and sailing. A few popular nautical tourism activities include:

Top Nautical Tourism Destinations

Nautical tourism is most popular during the summer and in warm weather tourist destinations. You can go on a nautical tour anywhere where there is a body of water. This includes oceans, lakes, or rivers. The Caribbean and Mediterranean are probably the most popular regions for nautical tourism.

23. Agritourism (Agrotourism)

types and forms of tourism

Agritourism is travel which involves agriculture. Generally, this means visiting a farm or ranch. This style of tourism is quickly growing as people become more and more interested in the foods they eat and where they come from. Sustainability is a big part of agritourism. Agritourism is quickly becoming a major part of the tourism industry. This is similar to rural tourism.

Agritourism Activities

Popular Agritourism Destinations

Pretty much every country has agricultural regions that you can visit. A few of the best agritourism destinations include:

24. Religious Tourism

types and forms of tourism

Religious tourism is one of the oldest forms of tourism. Religious tourism, also known as faith tourism, is a growing trend, where travelers visit places that are either the birthplace of a major figure in their religious faith, memorialize important events in their religion, or simply experience the culture and spiritual practices of another faith. Pilgrimages can also be considered religious tourism. Non-religious people can also participate in religious tourism by visiting religious sites and learning about the history of various religions.

Religious Tourism Activities

Popular Religious Tourism Destinations

25. Solo Tourism (Solo Travel)

types and forms of tourism

Solo Tourism is any kind of travel that is done alone. This means without a guide and without any friends or family. You organize everything by yourself including transportation, accommodation, and activities. You choose what you eat and how you organize your days. A solo tour can be a simple weekend getaway or a multi-year sabbatical.

Reasons to Travel Alone

Drawbacks of Solo Tourism

For help deciding whether or not this type of tourism is for you, check out my guide: Solo Travel Vs. Groups Travel: My Pros and Cons List

Top Solo Tourism Destinations

For more solo travel ideas, check out my guide: The Best Solo Travel Destinations. Also, check out my first solo trip review.

26. Extreme Tourism

mountain climbing

This is a type of tourism which involves travel to dangerous areas or participating in dangerous sports or events. In most cases the danger is not real, rather perceived. The goal is an adrenaline rush. Extreme tourism is very similar to adventure tourism.

Extreme Tourism Activities

Top Extreme Tourism Destinations

Generally, extreme tourism activities take place in the mountains or the ocean. A few popular destinations include:

27. LGBT Tourism

Also called Gay tourism, LGBT tourism is a type of travel designed for people who are gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender. Unfortunately, many countries around the world are dangerous or unwelcoming to LGBT people so they must put extra care when traveling or planning a vacation for the following reasons:

Popular LGBT Tourism Destinations

28. Experimental Tourism

In an experimental tour, destinations and itineraries are chosen based on a game, idea, or experiment. This often involves some kind of humor or chance. Examples of experimental tourism include:

For more info on experimental tourism including its history and some more examples, check out this extensive article from Medium.com.

29. Danger Tourism

Similar to extreme tourism, danger tourism involves travel to dangerous places or participating in dangerous events or activities. In this type of tourism, there is a real risk of injury or death involved.

Examples of Danger Tourism


There is a certain level of risk in all travel. Some trips are just on another level. In a danger tour, there is some chance that you are injured or killed.

30. Suicide Tourism

This isn’t a type of tour you want to go on, but I’ll describe it anyway because it is a type of tourism that, sadly, seems to be growing. Also known as euthanasia tourism, suicide tourism is traveling with the intent of committing suicide.

The main reason people choose to travel to commit suicide is because in some countries physician-assisted suicide is legal. Some countries sell drugs over the counter that can be used to commit suicide.

Suicide Tourism Destinations

31. Disaster Tourism

Disaster tourism is travel to a location where an environmental disaster is currently occurring or has recently occurred. This disaster could be man-made or natural. Most tourists choose to visit these destinations out of curiosity. Viewing an area that has been destroyed is interesting in a morbid kind of way. Looting could also be a motivation for criminals.

Examples of Disasters

This is a controversial type of tourism. There are two schools of thought when it comes to the ethics of disaster tourism. Some people believe that it is immoral for tour companies to profit off of the bad fortune of others. Also that it is voyeuristic to essentially people watch during a low point in someone’s life.

Others say that disaster is good because it allows people to see first hand what exactly is happening. This raises awareness and allows people to be empathetic to fellow human beings going through a rough time. Disaster tourism may also stimulate the local economy during a time where money is needed.

Both sides have a point. In my opinion, disaster tourism is fine as long as you aren’t adding to the suffering by making the life of the victims harder. For example, looting during a disaster situation is unacceptable.

Disaster Tourism Destinations

32. War Tourism

War tourism is defined as recreational travel to a former or active war zone. The purpose is usually to better understand the history of a particular war or battle.

The most common form of war tourism is travel to battlegrounds from famous wars. At these sites, you’ll find plaques, museums, artifacts, and tours of the actual battle sites.

Some hardcore travelers choose to visit active war zones for the thrill and unique experience. Of course, this practice is incredibly dangerous and controversial.

War Tourism Destinations

33. Urban Exploration Tourism

Urban exploration is a type of tourism that involves exploring man-made structures. Usually, these are places that have been abandoned and left to sit for long periods without any upkeep. These sites are in a state of ruin and decay. Urban exploration can also involve visiting sites that are just hidden or difficult to access.

This type of tourism usually involves trespassing and can result in fines or punishment. There can be some danger involved as well. Dilapidated buildings may not be structurally sound. It would be easy to fall and injure yourself. You could inadvertently expose yourself to asbestos as well as toxic chemicals and gasses. There is a high level of risk involved.

Urban Exploration Tourism Destinations

34. Budget Tourism (Budget Travel)

types and forms of tourism

Budget tourism involves travel on with a small amount of money. Limiting your budget can be done for the purpose of adventure or simply due to a lack of funds. Budget tourism proves that you don’t have to be wealthy to travel. 

Backpackers are the most common type of budget tourist. This style of travel involves traveling by public transportation and staying in hostel dorms most nights. Bicycle tourists, hitchhikers, vagabonds, campers, and hikers can also be considered budget tourists.

The budget depends on where you’re traveling and how many comforts you’re willing to give up. Some travelers can get by on $5-$10 per day. This is what I would consider budget travel. Other travelers consider $100 per day to be a low budget. The average budget tourist probably spends somewhere around $1000 per month on average.

A few ways to cut your travel budget include: 

Budget Tourism Destinations

35. Space Tourism

This type of tourism involves travel to space for recreational purposes. This could mean orbital, suborbital, or lunar space. 

So far, only a handful of people have traveled to space recreationally. Between 2001 and 2009, the Russian Space Agency allowed civilians to travel to the International Space Station in a Soyuz spacecraft. This is no longer an option.

At this time, there are no available space tourism options but there are a few companies working on it. Within the next few years, aerospace companies like Boeing, Space X, Blue Origin, and Virgin Galactic plan to begin offering recreational trips into space. 

36. Sustainable Tourism

Sustainable Tourism is an approach to travel that focuses on environmental, social, and cultural conservation. It involves minimizing the negative impacts of tourism while maximizing its potential for local benefit and providing an enjoyable experience for tourists.

Sustainable tourism emphasizes awareness of environmental challenges, caring for both people and the planet by reducing the consumption of natural resources, supporting local economies, and preserving local culture. The goal is to create a better environment for future generations.

37. International Tourism

International tourism is travel to another country. It is an important aspect of the global economy, as tourists contribute by spending money on hotels, restaurants, transportation, and entertainment. International tourism is a major part of the tourism industry. In addition to money, international tourism also brings culture, knowledge, and understanding. This can help to bridge divides between nations and cultures. International tourism is also known as outbound tourism.

Whenever you travel to another country, you are participating in international tourism. Even if you just cross over the border for a day. International tourism is generally more expensive than domestic tourism.

The top 10 most popular international tourism destinations include:

Final Thoughts on the Different Types of Tourism

As you can see, there are many different types of tourism. The tourism industry is a major part of the global economy.

Traditional vacations to a resort or the beach are great but sometimes it’s nice to try something a bit different. Hopefully, this list of 35 types of tourism helps you expand your horizons while planning your next big trip.

One thing to keep in mind is that you don’t need to plan your whole trip around one type of tourism. For example, maybe you’re a foodie but you also want to give surfing a try. You can be a food tourist and extreme tourist in the same trip. Simply choose a destination that allows you to do both. Mexico would work great for this example. 

I’m pretty open-minded. Personally, I always like to try something different when I travel. I believe that tourists should be able to go anywhere they want, see anything they want, and do anything they want as long as they don’t harm anyone or cause any damage to the natural environment. I always try to choose a destination that allows me to experience something that I’ve never experienced before. 

What are your favorite types of tourism? Share your experience in the comments below!

More from Where The Road Forks

Sharing is caring!

Sign me up for the newsletter!


Digital Web Design Agency India

Explore our Market-Fit Services

We ensure to establish websites with the latest trends as we believe that, products whose value satisfies the needs of the market and its potential customers can be efficiently successful.

Colorwhistle Clutch Reviews

Quick Links

Types of Tourism in The World

Category: Travel

Date: February 18, 2023

Types of Tourism in The World

Travel and tourism have become an essential part of our life as it refreshes the mind and reduces stress. It is also one of the fastest-growing industry which makes a significant contribution to the world’s GDP.

Tourism sector keeps evolving from the basics types like domestic tourism, inbound tourism, and outbound tourism.

What are the Types of Tourism?

The tourism realm is vast comprising numerous types. From birth tourism and space tourism to garden tourism and beyond, the array of options available to travelers is truly remarkable.

As a travel agency, incorporating this diverse array of tourism types into your offerings is a surefire way to achieve desirable results. Showcasing a wealth of options and catering to a wide range of travelers can capture prospective travelers.

Many experts predict that the tourism industry will recover gradually over the next few years. The UNWTO , for example, projects that international tourist arrivals will reach 1.5 billion by 2025, a significant increase compared to the all-time low of around 880 million in 2020.

63 Types of Tourism in the World

The diversity of tourism ensures that there is something for everyone to do. In this blog, we have listed the various types of tourism in the world. Travelers can take advantage of this blog to plan their next adventure, whereas travel agencies and tour operators can use this information to pull out strategies and grow your business .

1. Adventure Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Adventure Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Adventure tourism involves the exploration of remote places where travelers can expect the unexpected. It involves connecting with a new culture or new landscape and at the same time being physically active. Some of the adventure tourism activities involve day hiking, backpacking, zip lining, free fall, rafting, mountain biking, skiing and snowboarding.

2. Accessible Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Accessible Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Accessible tourism ensures people get access to tourist destinations, products and services regardless of physical limitations, disabilities or age. This tourism market was promoted through the research commissioned by the European Commission where the stakeholders provided insights on the complexities involved in accessible tourism. The European Network for Accessible Tourism has facilities such as barrier-free destinations, activities, exhibits, attractions and more.

3. Agritourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Agritourism) - ColorWhistle

Agritourism or agrotourism tourism normally occurs on farms. It gives travelers an opportunity to experience rural life, taste the local genuine food and get familiar with various farming tasks. This type of tourism is also referred to as farm stays in Italy. Some of the types of agritourism are direct market agritourism, experience and education agritourism, and event and recreation agritourism.

4. Alternative Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Alternative Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Alternative tourism, also known as specific interest tourism (SIT) involves travel that encourages interaction with local government, people and communities. Many travelers choose alternative tourism because they love nature and want to preserve it. Some of the approaches by alternative tourism involve ecotourism, adventure tourism, rural tourism, sustainable tourism, solidarity tourism, etc.

5. Atomic Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Atomic Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Atomic tourism has recently emerged where tourists learn about the atomic age by traveling to sites such as museums with atomic weapons, missile silos, vehicles that carried atomic weapons. Some of the top atomic tourist sites in the world are The Trinity Site, Doom Town, The Titan Missile Museum, Hanford B Reactor, Los Alamos, The National Museum of Nuclear Science & History, Enola Gay, Chernobyl and Pripyat, Hiroshima, Bikini Atoll and Malan Military Expo Park.

6. Benefit Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Benefit Tourism) - ColorWhistle

According to Medical Dictionary, ‘’A popular term for a non-British citizen (e.g., from the EU) who comes to the UK to live off social security and other entitlements, including child benefit, child tax credit, state pension credit, jobseeker’s allowance, and employment and support allowance.’’ These benefits are only afforded to those who meet the UK’s “right-to-reside” test.

7. Birth Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Birth Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Birth tourism also known as maternity tourism is the practice of traveling to another country for giving birth. The main reason for this practice is to obtain birthright citizenship. Other reasons include access to public schooling, healthcare and sponsorship for the parents. Some of the countries that give citizenship by birthright include United States, Canada, Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Jamaica, and Uruguay.

Travel Websites Promotion

8. Boat Sharing

Travel & Tourism Types (Boat sharing) - ColorWhistle

Boatsharing is the act of sharing boats with other people who want to go to the same place. They split the cost of boat, captain or skipper cost. Some of the famous boatsharing associations in the world are Boatide, Sailbox, Bootschaft, Steamboat, Antlos and Boatshare.

9. Booze Cruise

Travel & Tourism Types (Booze Cruise) - ColorWhistle

Booze cruise is a brief trip from Britain to France or Belgium with the intention of buying personal supplies such as alcohol or tobacco in bulk. This is legally acceptable and must not be confused with smuggling. In other countries, this term is used for an outing on a ship or boat which involves a significant amount of drinking.

10. Business Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Business Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Business tourism involves traveling to a destination away from home or a normal workplace. It is a type of travel for professional purposes rather than personal. Some types of business tourism are incentive travel, exhibitions & trade fairs, conferences & meetings, and corporate events.

11. Birdwatching

Travel & Tourism Types (Bird Watching) - ColorWhistle

Birdwatching is observing birds in their natural habitat. These birds are observed with the naked eye or visual enhancement devices such as binoculars, telescopes and listening devices. The world’s top birdwatching destinations are South Georgia Island; Cape May, New Jersey; Patanlal, Brazil; Broome, Western Australia; New Guinea Highlands; Nagaland, India; Kakum National Park, Ghana; Mindo, Ecuador; Hula Valley, Israel; and Kruger National Park; South Africa.

12. Camping

Travel & Tourism Types (Camping) - ColorWhistle

Camping is a famous outdoor activity that involves an overnight stay in a tent or recreational vehicle. It is considered as an inexpensive accommodation option. A minimum of one night is spent, distinguishing it from day-tripping, picnics, and other short-term recreational activities. There is also one more luxurious type of camping called Glamping. Some of the famous camping types are tent camping, backpacking/hiking, survivalist camping, canoe camping, RV and van camping.

13. Culinary Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Culinary Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Culinary tourism or food tourism is for food enthusiasts who love to explore new food destinations. This is a welcome change from the standard travel itinerary as the trip involves the opportunity to learn new cooking techniques or attend a food tasting. Some of the top culinary tourism destinations in the world are Italy, Spain, Dubai, Thailand, India, Tokyo, Bangkok, Japan, Peru, Ethiopia and New Orleans.

14. Cultural Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Cultural Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Cultural tourism is where travelers engage with a country or religion’s culture, especially the lifestyle and other elements that shaped the life of the people. Tourists get immersed with related activities such as rituals and festivals. Some of the popular cultural tourism destinations in the world are Madagascar; Lombok, Indonesia; Latvia; Haida Gwaii, British Columbia; Northern Sri Lanka; Chiang Mai, Thailand; Aristi, Greece; Western Cape, South Africa and Tamil Nadu, India.

15. Dental Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Dental Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Dental tourism or dental vacation involves people seeking dental care out of their local healthcare system. It may also be accompanied by a vacation. In developed countries like USA and Canada, dental care is expensive. So, dental tourists travel for low-cost dental care. Some of the famous dental tourism destinations include Mexico, Thailand, Panama, Philippines, Spain, Hungary, Romania and India.

16. Disaster Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Disaster Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Disaster tourism or dark/black/grief tourism involves visiting environmental disaster places that are either natural or man-made. People are attracted to this type of tourism because of its social, academic or cultural essence. Some of the most famous disaster tourism spots in the world are Hurricane Katrina, Pompeii, Exxon Valdez Oil Spill, Naval Air Engineering Station Lakehurst, Nevada National Security Site, Johnstown Flood National Memorial and 9/11 Memorial.

17. Domestic Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Domestic Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Domestic tourism involves residents of a country traveling within the same country. For example, if you are living in Manhattan and travel to Texas, it is called domestic tourism.

18. Recreational Drug Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Drug Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Recreational drug tourism is a type of travel for the purpose of using recreational drugs that are unavailable, illegal or expensive. These types of tourists may cross a national border to obtain a drug that is not sold in their country. Some of the popular destinations where recreational drug tourism is thriving are Peru, Morocco, Colombia, Colorado, Netherlands, Bolivia and Laos.

19. Enotourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Enotourism) - ColorWhistle

Enotourism, oenotourism, wine tourism, or vinitourism involves tasting, consumption or purchase of wine. These tourists visit wineries, taste wine, go on vineyard walks or even take part in the harvest. Some of the world’s top destinations for wine tastings are France, Portugal, Greece, Italy, Argentina, Australia, South Africa, Spain, New Zealand, Moldova and Chile.

20. Escorted Tour

Travel & Tourism Types (Escorted Tour) - ColorWhistle

An escorted tour is a type of tourism where travelers are guided in groups. Usually, it is a walking tour where a guide takes the group to historical or cultural sites. Under escorted tours, the guide or agency will take care of all the planning. Travelers can sit relax and enjoy the trip knowing that they are doing the best of everything.

21. Experiential Travel

Travel & Tourism Types (Experiential Travel) - ColorWhistle

Experiential travel or immersion travel is a tourism type where travelers experience a country by enthusiastically engaging with its history, people, culture and food. Some of the famous experiential travel trips are exploring Cuban culture, tag sharks in the Exumas, crossing the Antarctic Circle, catapult at 3Gs in Nevis Vally, safari in Tanzania, visiting Nomadic Herders and Reindeer, trek to the Tiger’s Nest and swimming with whale sharks in Mexico.

22. Experimental Travel

Travel & Tourism Types (Experimental Travel) - ColorWhistle

Experimental Tourism is an approach where travelers don’t visit the places of ordinary attraction. This type of tourism involves humor, serendipity, and chance. Some of the experimental travel types include flying by night, slow-return travel, alphabet travel, twelve travel, blind travel, find your other half travel and Vacilando.

23. Extreme Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Extreme Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Extreme tourism or shock tourism involves traveling to dangerous places such as mountains, jungles, deserts, caves, canyons etc. The main attraction is the adrenaline rush caused by the risk. Some extreme tourist attractions in the world are cage of death in Australia, cliff jumping in Norway, Iguazu boat ride in Brazil, CN tower edge walking in Toronto, volcano bungee in Chile, zorbing in New Zeland, and El Caminito Del Rey Trekking in Spain.

types and forms of tourism

24. Ecotourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Ecotourism) - ColorWhistle

Ecotourism involves visiting undisturbed natural areas. It promotes conserving the environment and improving the well-being of local people. Some of the best ecotourism destinations in the world are Alaska, The Amazon, Antarctica, Australian Blue Mountains, Borneo, Botswana, Costa Rica, Dominica, Galapagos Islands and Himalayas.

25. Fashion Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Fashion Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Fashion tourism involves visiting a particular place to enjoy, experiment, discover, study, trade and buy fashion. It evolved out of creative tourism, cultural tourism and shopping tourism sectors. The top fashion destinations in the world are New York, Paris, Barcelona, London, Rome, Milan, Hong Kong, Los Angeles, Berlin and Toronto.

26. Garden Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Garden Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Garden tourism is a niche tourism which involves traveling to botanical gardens and places that has a rich history of gardening. Famous gardens which attracts tourists around the world are Sissinghurst Castle Garden, Stourhead, Versailles, Giverny, Villandry, Rivau, Keukenhof, Villa d’Este, Villa Lante, Alhambra, Longwood Gardens, Filoli, Taj Mahal and Ryōan-ji.

27. Genealogy Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Genealogy Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Genealogy tourism or roots tourism involves tourists who travel to their ancestral place to reconnect with their past or to walk in the footsteps of their forefathers. It is a worldwide industry and prominent in countries that have experienced mass immigration.

28. Geotourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Geo Tourism) - ColorWhistle

According to National Geographic, Geotourism sustains or enhances the distinctive geographical character of a place—its environment, heritage, aesthetics, culture, and the well-being of its residents. Top geotourism destinations in the world are Tennessee River Valley, Sierra Nevada. Scenic, Wild Delaware River, Heart of the Continent, Crown of the Continent, Lakes to Locks Passage, Sedona Verde Valley, Four Corners and Bahamas.

29. Halal Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Halal Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Halal tourism is geared towards Muslim families who follow the rules of Islam. The accommodation service providers in such destinations do not serve alcohol and have a separate swimming pool and spa facilities for men and women. Famous Halal tourism destinations in the world are Malaysia, UAE, Turkey, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Jordan and Qatar.

30. Honeymoon Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Honeymoon Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Honeymoon tourism is taken soon after a couple is married. Generally, newlyweds spend more on this than any other type of tourism. Popular honeymoon destinations in the world are Cappadocia, Turkey; Harbour Island, Bahamas; Harbour Island, Bahamas; Livingstone, Zambia; Pacuare River, Costa Rica; Sintra, Portugal; Sintra, Portugal; Railay, Thailand; and Torres del Paine, Chile.

31. Industrial Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Industrial Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Industrial tourism are visits to industrial sites of a particular location. This concept has taken a renewed interest in recent times and attracts tourists to visit industrial heritage and modern sites. Some of the popular industrial tourism destinations in the world are Kawasaki, Japan; Saint-Nazaire, France; Belle Isle, United States; Bataan, Philippines; and Munich, Germany.

32. International Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Industrial Tourism) - ColorWhistle

The World Tourism Organization (WTO) defines tourism as ‘traveling to and staying in places outside their usual environment for not more than one consecutive year for leisure, business and other purposes’. This tourism has increased due to the impact of greater globalization. Some of the popular international tourism destinations are France, Spain, United States, China, Italy, Mexico, Germany, Thailand and United Kingdom.

33. International Volunteering

Travel & Tourism Types (International Tourism) - ColorWhistle

International volunteering also known as voluntourism is where people work for an organization or cause outside their home country. According to recent trends, this type of tourism has become popular in many countries. Famous international tourism destinations in the world are Thailand, Cambodia, India, Peru, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Tanzania, Morocco and Ghana.

34. Jungle Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Jungle Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Jungle tourism is a subcategory of adventure tourism which is nothing but traveling to the jungle regions of the earth. The top jungle tourism destinations in the world are The Jungles of Kipling, The Jungles of Borneo, The Brazilian Amazon, Sinharaja Forest Reserve, Tarzan’s Africa, The Wild Jungles of Papua New Guinea, Christmas Island’s Crazy Wildlife, Ancient Waipoua Forest, Peru Cloud Forest and Monteverde Cloud Forest.

35. Justice Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Justice Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Justice tourism or solidarity tourism aims to create economic opportunities for local communities, positive cultural exchange and political/historical education. This may overlap with revolutionary tourism. It is particularly promoted in Bosnia and Palestine.

36. LGBT Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (LGBT Tourism) - ColorWhistle

LGBT tourism is a form of niche tourism marketed to gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people. These tourists usually open about their sexual orientation or gender identity, travel to LGBT friendly destinations and travel with other LGBT people irrespective of destination. The top LGBT tourism destinations are Montreal, Brno, Myanmar, New York, New York, Thailand, Chicago, Sitges, Tel Aviv, Puerto Rico, Taipei, Barcelona, Rio de Janeiro and Saba.

37. Libel Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Libel Tourism) - ColorWhistle

According to Dictionary.com, the act of suing a writer for alleged defamation in a foreign jurisdiction where there are weak libel laws. England, Singapore, New Zealand, Kyrgyzstan and Australia are popular libel tourism destinations.

38. Literary Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Literary Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Literary tourism deals with tourists visiting birthplaces, burial sites, museums and other sites associated with authors or literary creations. Some scholars refer to this as a contemporary type of secular pilgrimage. Popular literary tourism destinations are London, Stratford-upon-Avon, Edinburgh, Dublin, New York, Concord, Paris, San Francisco, Rome and St Petersburg, Russia.

39. Militarism Heritage Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Militarism Heritage Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Militarism heritage tourism is a type of tourism where people visit former military sites. Some of the famous militarism heritage tourism locations are World War (I, II), Pacific Wars, Holocaust remembrance, American Revolution and more.

40. Motorcycle Touring

Travel & Tourism Types (Motorcycle Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Motorcycle touring involves a motorcycle. Tourists either buy or rent bikes that are equipped for long travel and luggage carrying capacity. Some of the popular motorcycle riding spots in the world are Leh & Ladakh, Ceuta to Marrakesh loop, Pyrenees Loop, Cape Town Circuit, Dales and Moors, Istanbul to Anatolia, Chasing Che, Tibet to Everest and Australia’s Great Ocean Road.

41. Music Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Music Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Music tourism involves visiting a city or town to see musical festival or music performance. In recent years, music tourism has transformed into a massive global phenomenon. Popular destinations for music tourism are Liverpool, Havana, Pune, Trinidad and Tobago, Tokyo, Vienna, Asheville, Essaouira and Berlin.

42. Medical Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Medical Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Medical tourism refers to people traveling to another country to get medical treatment. People from developed countries travel to developing countries to get low-priced medical treatment. Popular medical tourism destinations in the world are India, Malaysia, Brazil, Thailand, Mexico, Costa Rica, Taiwan, South Korea and Singapore.

43. Nautical Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Nautical Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Nautical tourism combines sailing and boating with vacation activities. It also encompasses marine tourism activities such as sailing, yachting, cruising and diving, coastal water sports, boat shows and more. Some of the world’s top nautical tourism destinations are Croatia, Netherlands, Australia, South America and the United States.

44. Political Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Political Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Political tourism refers to journeys taken with political intent. Such trips involve traveling to the areas of conflict to study the circumstances, understand the situations of both sides and develop knowledge about local history. Some of the popular political tourism destinations are Israel, Palestine and Africa.

45. Religious Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Religious Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Religious tourism, also known as faith tourism refers to traveling individually or in groups to holy sites. These sites are also visited by non-religious tourists who want to know the cultural, historical and religious significance. Famous religious tourism destinations in the world are Shwedagon Pagoda, Basilica of San Vitale, MECCA, Harmandir Sahib, Temple of Heaven, Bahá’í Gardens, The Vatican, Wat Rong Khun, Saint Basil’s Cathedral, Paro Taktsang, Spanish Synagogue, and Jerusalem

46. River Cruise

Travel & Tourism Types (River Cruise Tourism) - ColorWhistle

River cruise is a voyage along inland waterways which has several port stops along the way. Typically, travel time lasts longer than a week. Some of the world’s popular river cruise are River Nile cruise, Amazon river cruise, Yangtze river cruise, Danube river cruise, Mekong river cruise, Rhine river cruise, Volga river Cruise, Kerala backwaters cruise, Mississippi river cruise and Douro cruise.

47. Romance Tours

Travel & Tourism Types (Romance Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Romance tours are organized by tour operators where men go to countries to meet women for either romance or marriage. These types of tour first took place in Russia and the CIA, but recently moved to other parts of the world such as South America and Asia.

48. Rural Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Rural Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Rural tourism occurs in rural environments and involves rural experience. Tourists visit these places to understand the lifestyle of these people. Some of the popular rural tourism destinations are Pielachtal, Dirndl, Durbuy, Sveti Martin na Muri, Troodos, Florina, Örség, Clonakilty District, Specchia, Kuldiga, Theerthamalai and Nadur

Travel Promotion

49. Safari Holidays

Travel & Tourism Types (Safari Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Safari holidays involve watching wild animals in their natural habitat to observe and photograph wildlife. It generates the most number of revenues in several African countries. Popular safari destinations in the world are Victoria Falls, Serengeti National Park, Kruger National Park, Masai Mara National Reserve, Ngorongoro Crater, Addor Elephant National Park, Tarangire National Park, Amboseli National Park, Sabi Sands Game Reserve and Chobe National Park.

50. Science Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Science Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Science tourism is visiting and exploring scientific landmarks such as museums, laboratories, observatories and universities. It also includes viewing scientific events such as solar eclipse. Top scientific tourism destinations in the world are The Long Now 10,000 Year Clock, Nevada’s Solar System in Black Rock, Hobby-Eberly Telescope, Large Hadron Collider, Tesla’s laboratories, Blood Falls, Antarctica’s Dry Valleys and SpaceX Research Facility.

51. Self-Guided Tour

Travel & Tourism Types (Self Guided Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Self-guided tour or self-governing tour or solo trips is a type of tour where the traveler is responsible for getting from point A to point B on their own. They travel based on information such as maps, instructions and suggestions provided by tourist attractions. Some of the popular types of self-guided tours are walking tours, cycling tours and cross-country skiing.

52. Set-Jetting

Travel & Tourism Types (Set-Jetting) - ColorWhistle

Set-jetting is the latest trend that involves traveling to destinations that are seen in movies. Visiting stately homes like in the Jane Austin movies, touring London in high-speed boats like James Bond are good examples. Top set-jetting destinations in the world are Breaking Bad (New Mexico), Harry Potter (England) and The Wire (USA). there is also one more type of tourism called Tolkien tourism where fans of the Lord Of The Rings universe travel to the sites of the film, especially in New Zealand.

53. Slum Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Slum Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Slum tourism or ghetto tourism involves visiting impoverished areas. The purpose of this tourism is to provide tourists a chance to see the ‘non-touristy’ areas of a country. Some of the top slum tourism destinations in the world are South Africa, India, Brazil, Poland, Kenya, Philippines and others.

54. Space Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Space Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Space tourism involves traveling into space for recreational purposes. Even though this sounds futuristic, it has already established history. A Russian Space Agency has already facilitated successful orbital space tourism. The different types of space tourism are orbital, suborbital and lunar.

55. Sports Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Sports Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Sports tourism involves either observing or participating in a sporting event. It is one of the fastest-growing sectors and equates to $7.68 billion. Sports tourism is also classified into sports event tourism, celebrity and nostalgia sport tourism and active sport tourism. Normally, tourists are attracted to events such as the Olympic Games, the FIFA World Cup, F1 Grand Prix, World Tennis Championship, BWF World Championships and Cricket World Cup.

56. Stag Party Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Stag Party Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Stag party tourism is participating in a bachelor party which is usually held in another country. Some of the famous stag party tourism destinations are Central Europe and the Baltics, Amsterdam, UK and Spain.

57. Sustainable Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Sustinable Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Sustainable tourism or responsible tourism involves traveling to a place in order to make a positive impact on the environment, society and economy. It benefits everyone involved and not just one half of the equation. The top sustainable tourism destinations in the world are the Republic of Guyana, Ljubljana, Slovenia, Portugal, Chumbe Island in Tanzania, Bardia National Park and Ecuador’s Galapagos National Park.

58. Three-Dimensional Virtual Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (3DVT Tourism) - ColorWhistle

3DVT or 3D virtual tourism allows travellers to explore a place without physically travelling via a smartphone or computer. Such type of tours are created with 3D models and 2D panoramic images, a sequence of hyperlinked still or video images, and image-based models of the real world along with sound effects and text.

59. Tombstone Tourist

Travel & Tourism Types (Tombstone Tourist) - ColorWhistle

Tombstone tourist is an individual who enjoys history of famous deaths, cemeteries, epitaphs and gravestone rubbing. Such type of tourists are particularly interested in the historical aspect of such places.

60. War Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (War Tourism) - ColorWhistle

War tourism involves travelling to war zones for sightseeing or historical study. Such types of tourists get the thrill in travelling to dangerous and forbidden places. Some of the top war tourism destinations in the world are Baghdad, Iraq; Damascus, Syria; Mogadishu, Somalia; Gaza, Palestine, Kashmir, India; Jonglei and Upper Nile, South Sudan; Tripoli, Libya; Central African Republic; Kabul, Afghanistan; and Yemen.

61. Water Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Water Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Water tourism or nautical tourism combines sailing and boating with vacation & holiday. When people plan to travel on a vacation, many have a strong desire to head to the water. Some of the popular water tourism destinations in the world are Rome, The Grand Canyon, Indonasia, New York, Costa Rica, Cambodia, Peru, Mumbai, Turkey, Australia. and Netherlands.

62. Wellness Tourism

Travel & Tourism Types (Wellness Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Wellness tourism involves travelling to promote health via physical, psychological, or spiritual activities. This should not be confused with medical tourism because wellness tourists travel to maintain their health. The top wellness tourism destinations in the world are India, Spain, Singapore, Malaysia, California, Bali, Italy and Hawaii.

63. Whale Watching

Travel & Tourism Types (Whale Tourism) - ColorWhistle

Whale watching involves observing whales and dolphins in their natural habitat. Tourists visit such places for scientific and educational purposes.

The top whale watching places in the world are Seattle, USA; Kaikoura, New Zealand; Maui, Hawaii; Hermanus, South Africa; Big Sur, California; Galle, Sri Lanka; Husavik, Iceland; Los Cabos, Mexico; Quebec, Canada; and The Azores, Portugal.

What Are The Industries Related to Travel and Tourism?

Depending on the nature of travel, tourists are in need of certain facilities and services. Thus travel and tourism represent a broad range of related industries. They are,

How Tourism Providers Can Take Advantage of ColorWhistle’s Travel Website Design and Development Services?

ColorWhistle is a reliable web developer company offering unified travel website design; travel website development ; and API integration solutions to B2B and B2C customers .

From fascinating design, secure payment and online bookings our highly professional and talented team can take care of all your needs. If you like to learn more about travel, take a look at our detailed travel resource library which has many useful information for travel agents, travel operators and people in the travel business.

Let’s build great things together. To get started, contact us now. We will bring your travel business online and grow it with passion.

Did we miss any other type of tourism in our blog? Do share them in the comments section below.

Disclaimer – All the images in this blog belong to pexels.com. ColorWhistle does not own them.

Related Posts

Popular Travel Websites Tech Stack -ColorWhistle

Tech Stack Of Popular Travel Websites 

The Good, Great, and Genius of Online Booking Software for Tour Operators

The Good, Great, and Genius of Online Booking Software for Tour Operators

Online Travel Agency Business Models - ColorWhistle

Online Travel Agency Business Models


About the Author - Anjana

Anjana is a full-time Copywriter at ColorWhistle managing content-related projects. She writes about website technologies, digital marketing, and industries such as travel. Plus, she has an unhealthy addiction towards online marketing, watching crime shows, and chocolates.

View Our Services

Have an idea? Request a quote

Share This Blog


Hii very good article thanks keep doing the good work.

Thank you for reading!

OMG 😳 U DID A GREATEST WORK today i got to know theeeeeeese types tourism all over the world Thank you so much

thank you, helped with my class work 🙂

No 47 Romance Tours, never would’ve known that was a reason to travel the world.

Business is so fun with these sites as we all had a laugh with all the different types of tourism

Nice article, Anjana !

A comprehensive article, Anjana !


very informative

This is an interesting topic. I would like to travel again and I think that the river tourism may be the one for me! Thank you for the options.

Thank you for Your information.

Thank you Anjana! this was a really cool article!

thank you this helped a lot with my class work

Thanks for your good information From India ❤️

Leave a Reply Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Ready to get started?

Let’s craft your next digital story

Our Expertise Certifications - ColorWhistle

Sure thing, leave us your details and one of our representatives will be happy to call you back!

Eg: John Doe

Eg: United States

Eg: [email protected]

More the details, speeder the process :)

Ascout Suites.png

What Are The Types And Forms Of Tourism?

types and forms of tourism

Tourism is the fastest growing business globally as a significant foreign exchange and employment generation source for many countries. It helps to increase the economic and social phenomena; the movement of people from one place to another with the intention of return for a minimum of 24 hours to 6 months. The sole purpose of tourism is leisure and pleasure while staying in Hotels near Morro Bay .

Tourism is traveling and staying of people from one place to another for leisure time, business, change the environment and other purposes for not more than a year.

Types of Tourism

There are two types of tourism and many forms based on the purpose of visit and alternative forms of tourism: international and domestic tourism.

1. International Tourism

International tourism is when people travel to foreign countries as they need valid passports, visas, foreign exchange, health documents, etc. It is divided into two different categories: inbound and outbound tourism.

-Inbound Tourism

Inbound tourism is when a person travels outside their native country to another country means outside origin enters a particular country. When a tourist of Indian origin travels to Japan, it is inbound tourism for Japan because foreigners come to Japan.

-Outbound Tourism

Outbound tourism is when a person travels from the country of their origin to another country to be outbound tourism for his country. Such as tourists from India travel to Japan, then it's outbound tourism for India but inbound tourism for Japan.

2. Domestic Tourism

Traveling within your own country for tour purposes is called domestic tourism. It is easy to move within the country as you don't need a passport or any formal travel document with tedious formalities like health checks or foreign exchange. Generally, the traveler doesn't need to learn a foreign language or currency issue.

Forms of Tourism

Tourism has many forms based on the visit and alternative forms, so they are further divided into many types according to their nature. Forms of tourism are Ecotourism, Adventure Tourism, Beach Tourism, Atomic Tourism, Industrial Tourism, Bicycle Tours, Cultural Tourism, and Geo tourism. Moreover, these could be Medical Tourism, Rural Tourism, Sports Tourism, Sex Tourism, Religious Tourism, War Tourism, Wildlife Tourism, Space Tourism, Virtual Tourism, and Sustainable Tourism.

Classification of Tourism

Six categories of tourism explain the purpose of traveling.

1) Recreational:

(leisure tour that takes away a person from the everyday boring routine life to some beaches or hills).

2) Cultural:

(It satisfies cultural and intellectual curiosity and involves visiting ancient monuments or historical and religious places).

3) Sports/Adventure:

(tour for sports like playing golf, skiing, hiking mountains, and fall).

(tour for medical treatment or curative possibilities like hot springs and spa etc.).

5) Convention Tourism:

(for attending conventions related to their business, profession, and interest).

6) Incentive Tourism:

(holiday tour from company to dealers and salesman as a gift, achieving high sales targets).

When planning a tour, you can find the best Hotels in Morro Bay to enjoy your holidays with family or friends.

Hotel Management Studies

Your personal Hotel Guru…

Tourism: Forms and Types

Tourism Forms and Types

Tourism may be defined as  the movement of the people from their normal place of residence to another place ( with the intention to return) for a minimum period of twenty-four hours to a maximum of six months for the sole purpose of leisure and pleasure.

According to WTO  (1993) ” Tourism encompasses the activities of persons traveling and staying in places outside their usual environment for not more than one consecutive year for leisure, business, and other purposes.”

According to the   Tourism Society of Britain ,” tourism is the temporary short-period movement of people to destination outside the places where they normally live, work; and activities during their stay at these destinations.” This definition includes the movement of people for all purposes.


Tourism has two types and many forms on the bases of the purpose of visit and alternative forms of tourism. Tourism can be categorized as international and domestic tourism.

Tourism has two types and various forms. On the basis of the movement of people tourism categorized into two types.

 These are following as:

International Tourism

When people visit a foreign country, it is referred to as International Tourism. In order to travel to a foreign country, one needs a valid passport, visa, health documents, foreign exchange, etc.

International tourism further divides into two types; 

Inbound Tourism

This refers to tourists of outside origin entering a particular country. When people travel outside their host/native country to another country, then it is called inbound tourism for that country where he/she is traveling. For example when a tourist from Indian origin travels to Japan then it is  Inbound tourism for Japan because foreign tourist comes to Japan.

Outbound Tourism

This refers to tourists traveling from the country of their origin to another country. When tourists travel a foreign region than it is outbound tourism for his own country because he/she is going outside their country. For example when a tourist from India travel to Japan then it is outbound tourism for India and Inbound tourism for Japan.

Domestic Tourism

The tourism activity of the people within their own country is known as domestic tourism. Traveling within the same country is easier because it does not require formal travel documents and tedious formalities like compulsory health checks and foreign exchange. In domestic tourism, a traveler generally does not face many language problems or currency exchange issues.


Tourism has various forms on the basis of the purpose of visit and alternative forms. These are further divided into many types according to their nature. Forms of tourism are following as :

Recreational : Recreational or leisure tourism takes a person away from the humdrum of everyday life. In this case, people spend their leisure time at the hills, sea beaches, etc.

Cultural : Cultural tourism satisfies cultural and intellectual curiosity and involves visits to ancient monuments, places of historical or religious importance, etc.

Sports/Adventure : Trips have taken by people with a view to playing golf, skiing and hiking, fall within this category.

Health : Under this category, people travel for medical, treatment or visit places where there are curative possibilities, for example, hot springs, spa yoga, etc.

Convention Tourism : It is becoming an increasingly important component of travel. People travel within a country or overseas to attend conventions relating to their business, profession or interest.

Incentive Tourism : Holiday trips are offered as incentives by major companies to dealers and salesmen who achieve high targets in sales. This is a new and expanding phenomenon in tourism, These are in lieu of cash incentives or gifts, Today incentive tourism is a 3 billion dollar business in the USA alone.


Leave a Reply Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.

40 Different Types of Tourists [2021 Tourism Types Guide]

40 Different Types of Tourists [2021 Tourism Types Guide]

Trying to find out about the different types of tourists? I hope this post helps!

Trying to find out about the different types of tourists? I hope this post helps!

News just in:

Not all tourists are made equal!

Sure, we’re all going from place to place to enjoy the various attractions on offer in our chosen destinations.

But everything from our reasons for travelling to our style of travel can vary, right?

So it turns out tourism’s actually this big umbrella term, under which sit all sorts of different types of tourists .

In fact, it can actually get a bit confusing…

From what I can tell, there’s no actual consensus on how many tourism types exist!

Some articles list 3 main types of tourism, others 10, a few make up their own ones for a bit of fun, and I’ve even seen some that detail 60+ !

To satisfy my own curiosity and help anyone else who might be looking into this topic, I thought I’d do some digging and put together a post about the main categories of tourism that seem to crop up again and again.

Sound good? Keep reading for a detailed look at 40 different types of tourist and tourism!

Here we go then: 40 different tourism types worth knowing about!

Here we go then: 40 different tourism types worth knowing about!

You might like these posts too!

10 Primary Disadvantages of Tourism

A Complete Guide to Eco Travelling

10 Best Types of Vacations

How to Say Thank You Around the World

30 Different Types of Travelling

Comprehensive Guide to Responsible Tourism

20 Benefits of Solo Travel

The Best Jobs for Adventurers

3 Main Types of Tourism

Some sources, like this one , divide the overarching category of “tourism” into three primary forms: domestic, inbound, and outbound tourism.

Let’s go through each one in turn!

First, though, here’s a fun fact: to be classed as any type of tourist, it’s generally accepted that you’re not leaving home to stay in a chosen country for more than a year . Extend your stay beyond 12 months and I’m not exactly sure what you become (a resident, maybe?). Yet, by all accounts, you’re no longer a tourist !

1. Domestic

Domestic tourism’s basically when you visit somewhere within your own country but outside the specific place you live.

Imagine a Brit who lives in London. They’d be classed as a domestic tourist if they left London to explore another part of the UK.

Inbound tourism’s the opposite.

This, according to the source above, is “the activities of a visitor from outside [their] country of residence”.

So, if that same Brit left the UK to travel around France, or Spain, or anywhere that isn’t England, Wales, Scotland, or Northern Ireland, they’d be classed by their chosen destination as an inbound tourist.

3. Outbound

And, finally, outbound tourism is when you leave your home country to explore somewhere else.

So, technically, you can be an inbound and outbound tourist at the same time!

For instance, the Brit who leaves the UK to go on holiday in France is an outbound tourist from the UK’s perspective and an inbound tourist from France’s.

Which type of tourism most appeals to you? And what type of tourist do you think you are?! Find out in the next section…

Which type of tourism most appeals to you? And what type of tourist do you think you are?! Find out in the next section…

4 Types of Tourist?

In some pieces of tourist-related literature ( like this one ), those 3 official tourism types give way to 4 different types of tourists .

I find these ones far more interesting to think about!

They’re essentially different types of travellers . Learn the definitions and you can start working out which category you (and the people you meet on the road) fit into.

FYI, I’ve taken the following definitions from the source I’ve linked to above.

4. The Drifter

Drifters are tourists who pick novelty over familiarity every single time.

They revel in adventure, immerse themselves in the local community, and, whether they’re alone or in a group, tend to move without a plan or set itinerary.

5. The Explorer

Explorers favour novelty over familiarity too, just not to the same extent as drifters!

Preferring to travel solo , they also enjoy a semblance of comfort, structure, and certainty on the road. If they can see fascinating places with a reliable form of transport, then they’re happy bunnies.

6. The Individual Mass Tourist

The tables turn with individual mass tourists, who prefer familiarity over novelty.

However, they do choose to go it alone, opting for solo travel over group exploration whenever possible. They’ll follow a relatively structured itinerary and stick to certain times in particular parts of town.

7. The Organized Mass Tourist

Finally, there’s the organized mass tourist.

These guys are on the other end of the spectrum to drifters, picking familiarity over novelty every time. They’re the tourists who follow a tour guide whenever possible, try to create and stick to an itinerary, and leave nothing up to chance. 

According to the literature, different types of travellers seem to fit into two distinct categories. More on these next…

According to the literature, different types of travellers seem to fit into two distinct categories. More on these next…

2 Personality Tourist Types

To confuse things further, you see some sources (like this one ) discuss just two main tourist types!

This time, though, the definitions revolve around tourist personalities .

8. Allocentric (AKA “Venturers”)

Allocentric tourists are, according to the above source, “outgoing, self-confident, and adventurous”.

They tend to fly to their country of choice and will pick off-the-beaten-path destinations over more crowded/touristic ones.

From that description, allocentric travellers seem to resemble the drifters and explorers in the previous section. However, that’s very much my own interpretation! Experts in the field of tourism may disagree entirely.

9. Psychocentric (AKA “Dependables”)

As “self-inhibiting, nervous, and non-adventurous”, psychocentric tourists are basically the polar opposite of allocentric ones.

They “often refuse to travel by air for psychological reasons rather than financial of other practical concerns”, preferring familiar destinations to which they can travel by car and that have a solid tourist infrastructure.

Enjoying tour packages and well-organized itineraries, the psychocentric tourist sounds very much like the organized mass and individual mass tourists above. 

Time to move onto a long list of the main categories of tourism talked about in tourist circles!

Time to move onto a long list of the main categories of tourism talked about in tourist circles!

General Subcategories of Tourism

With the technical and official forms of tourism down, let’s move onto the many different categories that tourism boards talk about online!

In alphabetical order, these ones usually revolve around peoples’ reasons for travelling versus their specific personality or style of exploration.

10. Art Tourism

Love going to new places to get involved in the art scene? Maybe you go to art festivals, explore art galleries, or attend specific artistic events.

Whatever the case, you’re officially an “art tourist”.

Even things like going to famous museums and wine tasting events supposedly fall under the bracket of art tourism.

11. Backpacking/Youth Tourism

Sometimes referred to as “youth tourism” because of its typical demographic, backpacking (or backpacker) tourism is basically when you slap your stuff into a backpack and hit the road!

From what I can tell, it’s usually associated with a younger generation and often associated with gap year travel.

12. Budget Tourism

Quick heads up: I’m not sure this is an official type of tourism or one that’s been invented by the international travelling community!

Nevertheless, as someone who travels on a budget all the time, I can vouch for its legitimacy! Budget travel/tourism is the act of exploring on a shoestring. With close ties to backpacking tourism, you try to see and do what you can without having access to huge sums of cash.

Business tourism may be one of the better-known forms of tourism on this list.

Business tourism may be one of the better-known forms of tourism on this list.

13. Business Tourism

Business tourism seems to be one of the largest, most accepted, and most talked about tourism types out there.

It’s essentially when you have to travel for work!

A business traveller might attend meetings, go to trade shows, pitch ideas to international companies, and so on.

14. Cultural Tourism

In contrast to business tourism, the definition of cultural tourism seems to be far more slippery and less agreed upon in the literature.

I guess that makes sense though. After all, defining “culture” itself isn’t easy.

Regardless, the basic principle behind cultural tourism is that you travel somewhere to experience its cultural traditions/activities (whether you’re just watching or actively partaking in them). This might involve going to a religious festival in India or Carnival in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, for example.

15. Dark Tourism

Anyone who’s watched the “Dark Tourist” TV show will have a solid grasp of dark tourism already!

For anyone who’s new to the whole shebang, though, this is the slightly shady act of exploring places associated with death and/or tragedy.

Two examples would be:

Going to Cambodia to see the Killing Fields, or to

Mexico for El Dia de los Muertos (the Day of the Dead).

…As an aside, attending Mexico’s Day of the Dead celebrations would probably constitute cultural tourism as well.

Dental tourism is one type of tourism that fewer people know about, but that’s becoming increasingly popular.

Dental tourism is one type of tourism that fewer people know about, but that’s becoming increasingly popular.

16. Dental Tourism

Dental tourists are people who travel to a foreign country to receive dental treatment.

Sounds crazy, right?

However, it starts making far more sense when you realize you can get really high-quality dental care at a fraction of the cost overseas!

17. Disaster Tourism

Disaster tourism reminds me a bit of dark tourism. This time, though, it involves visiting places that have suffered some sort of environmental disaster.

Whether the disaster’s man-made or natural, people decide to take a look at the aftermath and it isn’t long before businesses start cropping up to cater to them.

18. Ecotourism

Ecotourism’s talked about a lot these days- especially among avid travellers who can’t imagine life without adventure, yet wish to preserve and protect the incredible places they’re lucky enough to visit.

Alas, with jet fuel often required to get efficiently from one place to another, living by these ideals is easier said than done!

Ethical dilemmas aside, ecotourism’s when you visit natural areas responsibly.

In other words, you travel in a way that both conserves the environment and benefits (instead of hinders) the local population.

Want to teach overseas? You’ll be partaking in educational tourism!

Want to teach overseas? You’ll be partaking in educational tourism!

19. Educational Tourism

Often shortened to “edu-tourism”, this type of tourism involves travelling to a foreign country for educational purposes .

The education itself may involve learning a language or learning information on the country’s history, culture, or social practices. Specific examples include going on a school trip or going to study abroad.

20. Ethnic Tourism

An ethnic tourist is someone who chooses to experience with their own two eyes the lifestyle, customs, and practices of another culture.

Sounds similar to cultural tourism, right?

However, according to this source , ethnic tourism involves a closer, more direct, and “intimate” glimpse into another culture, whereas cultural tourism involves a more indirect manner.

21. Event Tourism

As far as I can tell, event tourism involves hosting and marketing events of one form or another that function as specific tourist attractions.

In other words, you hold an event to:

Encourage people to visit your country and

Shed your country in a positive light.

An event tourist is someone who’s left their country of origin to visit that destination for that event (be it for business or pleasure) and stayed overnight . If they don’t stay, then they’re deemed an “event visitor”.

You can find more information here .

Family tourism’s another commonplace type of tourism worth knowing about.

Family tourism’s another commonplace type of tourism worth knowing about.

Enjoying this post about the different types of tourism? You might also like these…

50 Fascinating Facts About Travel

85+ Road Trip Trivia Questions & Games

75 Essential Things to Pack for Travel

Key Features of the Experience of Travel

100 Reasons I love to Travel (& You Will Too)

22. Family Tourism

Family tourism seems like a fairly vague and overarching term that involves all forms of tourist activity done as a family unit .

For example, you might travel somewhere with your family and go to a theme park, or try any other kid-friendly attractions in the area.

Family tourism would also include paying a visit to your friends and relatives overseas.

23. Festival Tourism

This type of tourist is nice and simple:

A festival tourist’s someone who travels somewhere specifically to attend a festival!

Whether it’s Glastonbury, Burning Man, Tomorrowland, or any of the other countless festivals happening around the world, attending them all constitutes festival tourism.

24. Food/Gastronomy Tourism

Travelling somewhere to sample its gastronomical delights and learning a thing or two about the culture as a result?

Well, you’re officially a food tourist!

Food tourism is the arena in which you’ll operate. You could be taking a cooking class, visiting local producers, sampling the street food, or taking a local wine tour.

Of all the tourism types on this list, heritage/historical tourism is one of my personal favourites.

Of all the tourism types on this list, heritage/historical tourism is one of my personal favourites.

25. Health/Medical Tourism

Medical tourism’s similar to dental tourism. This time, though, you’re travelling abroad to get treatment of the medical instead of the dental variety!

It can work in two ways.

First, someone from a less-developed country may travel to a more developed one in order to access treatment that’s unavailable at home.

Second, someone from a more developed country may travel to a less developed one to benefit from cheaper treatment.

26. Historical/Heritage Tourism

In a nutshell, historical tourism (otherwise known as heritage tourism) involves going overseas to enjoy its historical sites, sights, and attractions!

It’s the person who visits Rome to explore the Colosseum, Egypt to see the Sphinx, or Peru to visit Machu Picchu. Sure, you enjoy the other tourism attractions in these places as well, but your primary focus is on the history.

Read more about historical tourism here .

27. Hobby Tourism

As you’d expect, hobby tourism is when you travel alone or in a group to watch or partake in your particular hobby of choice.

Things like “football tourism” (e.g. going somewhere to watch your favourite football team play) and “music tourism” (e.g. going somewhere to see your favourite artist perform live) are two popular examples that fit within this overarching category.

International tourism is one of the main types that crop up again and again.

International tourism is one of the main types that crop up again and again.

28. International Tourism

Another wide, general, and overarching category of travel, international tourism is the opposite of domestic tourism (discussed above):

You cross national borders to visit and explore your given destination.

29. Leisure Tourism

To borrow a definition from USA Today , leisure travel involves:

“Travel in which the primary motivation is to take a vacation from everyday life.”

So, the leisure tourist might be staying in resorts, dining out, lazing on beaches, going on guided tours, and doing whatever they can to take a much-needed break from the norm.

30. Local Tourism

Local tourism basically involves spending your time and money in foreign destinations as one of the locals would!

You’re shopping in local markets, paying a local taxi driver for a ride instead of a big international company like Uber, dining in local establishments and partying where the locals go.

The goal? To:

Experience what life in this destination’s really like, and

Spend your cash in a way that supports the local population.

Want to learn more about a similar topic? Here’s my guide to local travel .

Leisure tourists look for an escape from everyday life and see travel as the perfect solution.

Leisure tourists look for an escape from everyday life and see travel as the perfect solution.

31. National Tourism

Remember the definitions of domestic and outbound tourism I talked about before?

Well, according to the World Tourism Organization , national tourism is a category of tourism that encapsulates them both.

In their words:

“That is to say, the activities of resident visitors within and outside the country of reference, either as part of domestic or outbound tourism trips”.

32. Nature Tourism

Nature tourism’s another straight-forward form of tourism to wrap your head around:

You simply travel somewhere to revel in its natural, undeveloped areas and/or to enjoy the native wildlife on offer there!

33. Recreational Tourism

I’ve seen recreational (or recreation) tourism defined in two different ways.

The first (and most common) is that it involves travelling in order to participate in recreational activities- usually in nature- or to be a participant. Golf, fishing, hiking, and kayaking are a few examples.

The second, less common description (that nonetheless ranks at the top of Google results) is that it’s “the movement of people in their free time in the aims of rest required to restore the physical and mental strength of a person”.

Love nature and want to spend more time outdoors? Nature and recreational tourism are two different types of tourism worth looking into!

Love nature and want to spend more time outdoors? Nature and recreational tourism are two different types of tourism worth looking into!

34. Religious Tourism

Are you a person of faith? Are you travelling alone or in a group to do something related to your religion?

Well, technically speaking, whether you’re going on pilgrimage, travelling as a missionary, or simply having fun, you’d be considered a religious tourist .

Heads up, you’ll also see religious tourism referred to as faith tourism .

35. Shopping Tourism

A relative newbie as far as the different types of tourists go, shopping tourism is exactly what you’d expect it to be:

Where the purpose of travelling to new places revolves largely around the desire to buy stuff . So, whether you’re going to London, Paris, or New York, your primary focus is on the goods you can acquire there.

36. Social Tourism

A more complicated and nuanced category of tourism, examples of social tourism include helping a charity build schools somewhere overseas, or teaching English to students there, and so on.

Simply put, the central focus of travel here isn’t just on personal pleasure. You’re trying to do something good for local communities in which you’re exploring.

Third-age tourism is another key tourism category in the travel industry! First, though, let’s talk about sports tourism…

Third-age tourism is another key tourism category in the travel industry! First, though, let’s talk about sports tourism…

37. Sport Tourism

Going somewhere new to participate in or watch a sporting event?

Well, you’re a sport tourist!

Imagine going overseas to see the next football/soccer world cup or to be in the stands at the next Olympics. This is sports tourism in its purest form. However, it could also involve going somewhere to train as a yoga instructor, or to learn martial arts.

38. Third-Age Tourism

Third-age tourism is also known as senior tourism or “silver tourism”.

This is the section of the tourist industry aimed at people who are going somewhat “grey around the edges”; who may have retired and now have expendable income and lots of free time on their hands.

So, if you love to travel and are getting a little longer in the tooth, then you’re probably classed as a senior tourist.

39. Urban Tourism

Another type of tourism for which you can probably guess the definition, urban tourism involves travelling to and around non-rural destinations.

This is the weekend trip to London, or the short break in Berlin.

You’re exploring the cities or towns, immersing yourself in the myriad metropolitan attractions on offer there.

40. Winter/Ski Tourism

Love cutting lines down powdered peaks? Well, you’re already familiar with winter/ski tourism!

From getting involved in winter sports (like skiing, snowboarding, or ice-skating) to watching them from the side-lines, a winter tourist travels to enjoy all-things cold and snow/ice-covered.

Remember (and try!) These Tourism Types

There you have it then: 40 different types of tourists.

As you can tell, although most of us have a basic definition of “tourism” in our head, the industry itself breaks down into dozens of individual tourism types !

If you’ve been trying to gain a greater understanding of these different categories of tourism, then I hope this post has helped!

Know of any other types of tourist for me to add to the list? Drop a comment below!

Like this post about tourist types? Read these next:

20 Coldest Countries in the World [World’s Coldest Country Guide]

Subscribe Here! ⬇

Are you trying to figure out what you’re doing too? Why not join the community and tag along for the ride? I’ll send through the tips, updates, info and inspiration that I come across on this journey!

Disclaimer: I hate spam. I promise to never bombard you with emails or share your personal information.

You just made my day! Thank you! Keep an eye on your inbox- I’ll be in touch with some cool stuff soon 😄

The 17 different types of travel

Travel and tourism is a diverse industry and there are many different types of travel. The type of travel will determine the methods of business, the types of customer that it attracts and the the destination type that is facilitating tourism. In this article I will tell you all about the main types of travel and give you some examples of each.

The different types of travel

Short breaks, city breaks, countryside breaks, stag and hen parties, special events, mice tourism, short-term work contracts, types of specialist travel, vfr: migrants and expats, types of day trips, to conclude: types of travel, further reading.

Separating the different types of travel into clear segments or categories isn’t always an easy task.

Some types of travel may span more than one category- for example a person can go on a short break that is also corporate travel.

And others may be somewhat subjective- what is a short break? Is it two days? Is it four days? This is not clear-cut.

Please enable JavaScript

However, whilst accurately segregating types of travel into distinct categories may not be an easy task, it can be useful to have general classifications.

Categorising holidays into different types of travel helps us to better understand and assess the market segment in question. It also enables better tourism management and planning .

So what are the different types of travel? If video is your thing, watch the short video below, which covers all of the different types of travel, if not, read on…

Leisure travel

Leisure travel generally refers to travel that is undertaken for the purpose of pleasure, enjoyment, relaxation or special interests.

Leisure travel is an important component of tourism , and makes up a significant part of the tourism industry .

There are different ways that someone can undertake leisure travel. I have outlined these below.

Short breaks have become increasingly popular since the advent of the low cost airline .

Cheaper fares and regular flights have meant that people have been able to jet off for a weekend break that may not have previously been possible. In fact, [pre COVID] trends have shown that many people are now choosing to take 2-3 short breaks each year rather than a singular, more traditional summer holiday.

Short breaks are especially popular in areas that are well-connected. In Europe, for instance, it is easy to go on a short break from London to Paris. However, if you lived in Australia , the vast distances between destinations may mean that short breaks are less feasible.

City breaks are a popular type of travel.

Cities have lots to offer such as entertainment options (eating out, shows, events etc), as well as a range of tourist attractions and business tourism opportunities.

Cities are usually well connected by transport, making them easily reachable for tourists.

Rural tourism is very popular since the COVID pandemic. Countryside breaks enable people to enjoy the fresh air and to be socially distant from others.

There are many things to do on a countryside break, from hiking the Mendips , to adventure sports such as rock climbing in places like Cheddar Gorge .

It is a tradition for brides and grroms-to-be to celebrate their forthcoming marriage with a stag party or hen party. Whilst this might last for just a few hours, many people are now choosing to travel to a place outside of their home for a short break.

There are many destinations that are popular for stag or hen parties. These are usually destinations which have a substantial nightlife scene.

In Europe, many people go on a stag or hen party to Riga , Barcelona, Manchester, London, Lisbon, Benidorm, Krakow, Liverpool, Amsterdam… to name but a few.

There are different types of holidays that constitute leisure tourism.

Throughout the history of tourism , package holidays have been a popular type of travel. Packages are put together by tour operators and are then sold by different types of travel agent . This makes travel easier for the consumer.

Many people also choose to undertake independent travel. Whether tourists choose to create a dynamic package or travel on the fly, this is a popular method of leisure travel.

Cruise tourism has also grown considerably in recent years. Cruise ships come in all shapes and sizes and are popular with a wide variety of tourist types. Cruising is a form of enclave tourism .

Many people who travel for leisure are doing so to spectate or be involved in a major sporting event .

There are a large number of events that make up an important part of the sports tourism industry. Some examples include the annual Wimbledon Tennis tournament, the Formula 1 Grand Prix and the Football World Cup.

There are also other major events that people may choose to travel for. This could be, for example, the Chelsea Flower Show in London, the Day of the Dead festival in Mexico , Songkran in Thailand or the Glastonbury music festival.

Corporate travel

One of the most important (but often forgotten about!) types of travel is corporate travel.

Corporate travel, also referred to as business tourism , is any travel that is associated with or related to a person’s job or work.

Corporate travel may or may not involve staying away from home overnight.

Some types of corporate travel that you may encounter include:

MICE stands for- meetings, incentives, conferences, exhibitions. These are four important areas of the corporate travel market.

Many people will travel to attend meetings. Although, with the growth of the shut-in economy and software programmes such as Zoom and Microsoft Teams, travel for meetings has decreased significantly.

Incentive travel is travel which is given as a reward for good performance at work. It is designed to act as a motivator for staff; encouraging them to worker harder, ac hive better results and ultimately make more money for the business.

Conferences and exhibitions are an important tool for sharing ideas and networking. Similarly to meetings, many of these have now been moved online. However, it is unlikely that the conference market will disappear completely, as networking via a computer screen will never yield the same benefits as having a face-to-face conversation.

Training courses are, and will continue to be, essential to successful tourism operations management. Staff need to be trained for the position that they will/are working in and will need to be regularly unskilled.

Staff may also wish to undertake extra training for promotions or to keep up to date with industry developments.

Training courses can be in your place of work, but they can take place in alternative destinations; meaning that they facilitate a form of corporate travel.

Corporate travel can also consist of temporary work contracts. This is when a person is required to work in a location outside of their home environment for a specified period of time.

Whilst the time-frame is not clearly defined, if somebody relocates for work, they are then classified as an expatriate rather than a business tourist.

Work contracts such as these can be based within the employee’s home country or they can be based overseas.

Specialist travel

Specialist travel, often referred to as special interest tourism, is a form of niche tourism. It groups together an indefinite number of types of tourism that are specialist in nature.

Specialist tourism is often linked to a personal hobby, sport or interest. It may also be a type of travel that meets a specific need of a particular tourist or group of tourists.

I have outlined over 150 different types of specialist tourism in my types of tourism glossary – I told you, there are A LOT of different tourism types!

Some of the most common types of tourism include adventure tourism, health tourism, educational tourism, heritage and cultural tourism , gap year travel, conservation, sustainable tourism , responsible tourism and honeymoon tourism.

Visiting Friends and Relatives (VFR)

Visiting friends and relatives (VFR) is one of the biggest market segments in travel and tourism and is one of the most important types of travel.

People travel all around the world to visit their friends and relatives. This is an important form of domestic tourism as well as inbound tourism and outbound tourism .

Sometimes VFR will involve an overnight stay, and other times it will not. Travellers may choose to stay with their friends or relatives in their home or they may book accommodation of their own.

VFR is an especially prominent type of travel in areas with high migration or expatriation. For example, there are thousands of tourists who travel from the UK to India and Poland each year to visit family and friends, This is because there are a high number of Indian and Polish migrants in the UK.

Another important type of travel is day trips. Whilst according to some definitions of tourism, one may not technically be classified as a tourist unless they stay away from home overnight, they are nonetheless a valuable contribution to the tourism economy.

Most people who undertake a day trip will be visiting friends and relatives or in search of leisure or business.

Many people will choose to take a day trip to visit a tourist attraction, to go shopping, to attend an event, to visit the countryside or to take part in various activities.

A day trip can take part close to your home or it can form part of a holiday, i.e. you take a tour from your hotel whilst on holiday.

As you can see, there are many different types of travel, which can broadly be categorised as: leisure travel, corporate travel, specialist travel, visiting friends and relatives and day trips. All of these types of travel provide important contributions to the wider tourism industry and segmentation in this way allows us to assess and organise the industry according to the types of travel that are under scrutiny.

Popular Keywords

Total Results

No Record Found


popular Posts

Recent posts, 35 amazing things minnesota is known for, 30 fascinating facts about the deserts of arizona, 40 awesome things hawaii is known for, 16 fascinating facts about boreal forests, 30 magnificent things michigan is known for.


©2023 Dr Hayley Stainton, all rights reserved.

Registered office: 85 Great Portland street, First Floor, London, W1W 7LT.

Company number: 12534224.


Glossary of tourism terms

UN standards for measuring tourism

Share this content.

Glossary of tourism terms

Tourism is a social, cultural and economic phenomenon which entails the movement of people to countries or places outside their usual environment for personal or business/professional purposes. These people are called visitors (which may be either tourists or excursionists; residents or non-residents) and tourism has to do with their activities, some of which involve tourism expenditure.

Activity/activities : In tourism statistics, the term activities represent the actions and behaviors of people in preparation for and during a trip in their capacity as consumers ( IRTS 2008, 1.2 ).

Activity (principal): The principal activity of a producer unit is the activity whose value added exceeds that of any other activity carried out within the same unit ( SNA 2008, 5.8 ).

Activity (productive): The (productive) activity carried out by a statistical unit is the type of production in which it engages. It has to be understood as a process, i.e. the combination of actions that result in a certain set of products. The classification of productive activities is determined by their principal output.

Administrative data : Administrative data is the set of units and data derived from an administrative source. This is a data holding information collected and maintained for the purpose of implementing one or more administrative regulations.

Aggregated data : The result of transforming unit level data into quantitative measures for a set of characteristics of a population.

Aggregation : A process that transforms microdata into aggregate-level information by using an aggregation function such as count, sum average, standard deviation, etc.

Analytical unit : Entity created by statisticians, by splitting or combining observation units with the help of estimations and imputations.

Balance of payments : The balance of payments is a statistical statement that summarizes transactions between residents and non-residents during a period. It consists of the goods and services account, the primary income account, the secondary income account, the capital account, and the financial account ( BPM6, 2.12 ).

Bias : An effect which deprives a statistical result of representativeness by systematically distorting it, as distinct from a random error which may distort on any one occasion but balances out on the average.

Business and professional purpose (of a tourism trip): The business and professional purpose of a tourism trip includes the activities of the self-employed and employees, as long as they do not correspond to an implicit or explicit employer-employee relationship with a resident producer in the country or place visited, those of investors, businessmen, etc. ( IRTS 2008, 3.17.2 ).

Business visitor : A business visitor is a visitor whose main purpose for a tourism trip corresponds to the business and professional category of purpose ( IRTS 2008, 3.17.2 ).

Central Product Classification : The Central Product Classification (CPC) constitutes a complete product classification covering goods and services. It is intended to serve as an international standard for assembling and tabulating all kinds of data requiring product detail, including industrial production, national accounts, service industries, domestic and foreign commodity trade, international trade in services, balance of payments, consumption and price statistics. Other basic aims are to provide a framework for international comparison and promote harmonization of various types of statistics dealing with goods and services.

Census : A census is the complete enumeration of a population or groups at a point in time with respect to well defined characteristics: for example, Population, Production, Traffic on particular roads.

Coherence : Adequacy of statistics to be combined in different ways and for various uses.

Consistency : Logical and numerical coherence.

Country of reference : The country of reference refers to the country for which the measurement is done. ( IRTS 2008, 2.15 ).

Country of residence : The country of residence of a household is determined according to the centre of predominant economic interest of its members. If a person resides (or intends to reside) for more than one year in a given country and has there his/her centre of economic interest (for example, where the predominant amount of time is spent), he/she is considered as a resident of this country.

Country-specific tourism characteristic products and activities : To be determined by each country by applying the criteria of IRTS 2008, 5.10 in their own context; for these products, the activities producing them will be considered as tourism characteristic, and the industries in which the principal activity is tourism-characteristic will be called tourism industries ( IRTS 2008, 5.16 ).

Data checking : Activity whereby the correctness conditions of the data are verified. It also includes the specification of the type of error or of the condition not met, and the qualification of the data and their division into “error-free data” and “erroneous data”.

Data collection : Systematic process of gathering data for official statistics.

Data compilation : Operations performed on data to derive new information according to a given set of rules.

Data confrontation : The process of comparing data that has generally been derived from different surveys or other sources, especially those of different frequencies, in order to assess and possibly improve their coherency, and identify the reasons for any differences.

Data processing : Data processing is the operation performed on data by the organization, institute, agency, etc., responsible for undertaking the collection, tabulation, manipulation and preparation of data and metadata output.

Data reconciliation : The process of adjusting data derived from two different sources to remove, or at least reduce, the impact of differences identified.

Destination (main destination of a trip): The main destination of a tourism trip is defined as the place visited that is central to the decision to take the trip. See also purpose of a tourism trip ( IRTS 2008, 2.31 ).

Documentation: Processes and procedures for imputation,  weighting,  confidentiality  and suppression rules, outlier treatment and data capture should be fully documented by the  survey provider.  Such documentation should be made available to at least  the body financing the survey.

Domestic tourism : Domestic tourism comprises the activities of a resident visitor within the country of reference, either as part of a domestic tourism trip or part of an outbound tourism trip ( IRTS 2008, 2.39 ).

Domestic tourism consumption : Domestic tourism consumption is the tourism consumption of a resident visitor within the economy of reference ( TSA:RMF 2008, figure 2.1 ).

Domestic tourism expenditure : Domestic tourism expenditure is the tourism expenditure of a resident visitor within the economy of reference, (IRTS 2008, 4.15(a)).

Domestic tourism trip : A domestic tourism trip is one with a main destination within the country of residence of the visitor (IRTS 2008, 2.32).

Domestic visitor : As a visitor travels within his/her country of residence, he/she is a domestic visitor and his/her activities are part of domestic tourism.

Durable consumer goods : Durable consumer goods are goods that may be used repeatedly or continuously over a period of a year or more, assuming a normal or average rate of physical usage. When acquired by producers, these are considered to be capital goods used for production processes, as is the case of vehicles, computers, etc. When acquired by households, they are considered to be consumer durable goods ( TSA:RMF 2008, 2.39 ). This definition is identical to the definition of SNA 2008, 9.42 : A consumer durable is a goodthat may be used for purposes of consumption repeatedly or continuously over a period of a year or more.

Dwellings : Each household has a principal dwelling (sometimes also designated as main or primary home), usually defined with reference to time spent there, whose location defines the country of residence and place of usual residence of this household and of all its members. All other dwellings (owned or leased by the household) are considered secondary dwellings ( IRTS 2008, 2.26 ).

Economic analysis : Tourism generates directly and indirectly an increase in economic activity in the places visited (and beyond), mainly due to demand for goods and services thatneed to be produced and provided. In the economic analysis of tourism, one may distinguish between tourism’s ‘economic contribution’ which refers to the direct effect of tourism and is measurable by means of the TSA, and tourism’s ‘economic impact’ which is a much broader concept encapsulating the direct, indirect and induced effects of tourism and which must be estimated by applying models. Economic impact studies aim to quantify economic benefits, that is, the net increase in the wealth of residents resulting from tourism, measured in monetary terms, over and above the levels that would prevail in its absence.

Economic territory : The term “economic territory” is a geographical reference and points to the country for which the measurement is done (country of reference) ( IRTS 2008, 2.15 ).

Economically active population : The economically active population or labour force comprises all persons of either sex who furnish the supply of labour for the production of goods and services as defined by the system of national accounts during a specified time-reference period (ILO, Thirteenth ICLS, 6.18).

Economy (of reference): “Economy” (or “economy of reference”) is an economic reference defined in the same way as in the balance of payments and in the system of national accounts: it refers to the economic agents that are resident in the country of reference ( IRTS 2008, 2.15 ).

Employees : Employees are all those workers who hold the type of job defined as “paid employment” (ILO, Fifteenth ICLS, pp. 20-22).

Employer-employee relationship : An employer-employee relationship exists when there is an agreement, which may be formal or informal, between an entity and an individual, normally entered into voluntarily by both parties, whereby the individual works for the entity in return for remuneration in cash or in kind ( BPM6, 11.11 ).

Employers : Employers are those workers who, working on their own account with one or more partners, hold the type of job defined as a “self-employment job” and, in this capacity, on a continuous basis (including the reference period) have engaged one or more persons to work for them in their business as “employee(s)” (ILO, Fifteenth ICLS, pp. 20-22).

Employment : Persons in employment are all persons above a specified age who, during a specified brief period, either one week or one day, were in paid employment or self-employment (OECD GST, p. 170).

Employment in tourism industries : Employment in tourism industries may be measured as a count of the persons employed in tourism industries in any of their jobs, as a count of the persons employed in tourism industries in their main job, or as a count of the jobs in tourism industries ( IRTS 2008, 7.9 ).

Enterprise : An enterprise is an institutional unit engaged in production of goods and/or services. It may be a corporation, a non-profit institution, or an unincorporated enterprise. Corporate enterprises and non-profit institutions are complete institutional units. An unincorporated enterprise, however, refers to an institutional unit —a household or government unit —only in its capacity as a producer of goods and services (OECD BD4, p. 232)

Establishment : An establishment is an enterprise, or part of an enterprise, that is situated in a single location and in which only a single productive activity is carried out or in which the principal productive activity accounts for most of the value added ( SNA 2008, 5.14 ).

Estimation : Estimation is concerned with inference about the numerical value of unknown population values from incomplete data such as a sample. If a single figure is calculated for each unknown parameter the process is called “point estimation”. If an interval is calculated within which the parameter is likely, in some sense, to lie, the process is called “interval estimation”.

Exports of goods and services : Exports of goods and services consist of sales, barter, or gifts or grants, of goods and services from residents to non-residents (OECD GST, p. 194)

Frame : A list, map or other specification of the units which define a population to be completely enumerated or sampled.

Forms of tourism : There are three basic forms of tourism: domestic tourism, inbound tourism, and outbound tourism. These can be combined in various ways to derive the following additional forms of tourism: internal tourism, national tourism and international tourism.

Goods : Goods are physical, produced objects for which a demand exists, over which ownership rights can be established and whose ownership can be transferred from one institutional unit to another by engaging in transactions on markets ( SNA 2008, p. 623 ).

Gross fixed capital formation : Gross fixed capital formation is defined as the value of institutional units’ acquisitions less disposals of fixed assets. Fixed assets are produced assets (such as machinery, equipment, buildings or other structures) that are used repeatedly or continuously in production over several accounting periods (more than one year) ( SNA 2008, 1.52 ).

Gross margin : The gross margin of a provider of reservation services is the difference between the value at which the intermediated service is sold and the value accrued to the provider of reservation services for this intermediated service.

Gross value added : Gross value added is the value of output less the value of intermediate consumption ( TSA:RMF 2008, 3.32 ).

Gross value added of tourism industries : Gross value added of tourism industries (GVATI) is the total gross value added of all establishments belonging to tourism industries, regardless of whether all their output is provided to visitors and the degree of specialization of their production process ( TSA:RMF 2008, 4.86 ).

Grossing up : Activity aimed at transforming, based on statistical methodology, micro-data from samples into aggregate-level information representative of the target population.

Imputation : Procedure for entering a value for a specific data item where the response is missing or unusable.

Inbound tourism : Inbound tourism comprises the activities of a non-resident visitor within the country of reference on an inbound tourism trip ( IRTS 2008, 2.39 ).

Inbound tourism consumption : Inbound tourism consumption is the tourism consumption of a non-resident visitor within the economy of reference ( TSA:RMF 2008, figure 2.1 ).

Inbound tourism expenditure : Inbound tourism expenditure is the tourism expenditure of a non-resident visitor within the economy of reference ( IRTS 2008, 4.15(b) ).

Institutional sector : An aggregation of institutional units on the basis of the type of producer and depending on their principal activity and function, which are considered to be indicative of their economic behaviour.

Institutional unit : The elementary economic decision-making centre characterised by uniformity of behaviour and decision-making autonomy in the exercise of its principal function.

Intermediate consumption : Intermediate consumption consists of the value of the goods and services consumed as inputs by a process of production, excluding fixed assets whose consumption is recorded as consumption of fixed capital ( SNA 2008, 6.213 ).

Internal tourism : Internal tourism comprises domestic tourism and inbound tourism, that is to say, the activities of resident and non-resident visitors within the country of reference as part of domestic or international tourism trips ( IRTS 2008, 2.40(a) ).

Internal tourism consumption : Internal tourism consumption is the tourism consumption of both resident and non-resident visitors within the economy of reference. It is the sum of domestic tourism consumption and inbound tourism consumption ( TSA:RMF 2008, figure 2.1 ).

Internal tourism expenditure : Internal tourism expenditure comprises all tourism expenditure of visitors, both resident and non-resident, within the economy of reference. It is the sum of domestic tourism expenditure and inbound tourism expenditure. It includes acquisition of goods and services imported into the country of reference and sold to visitors. This indicator provides the most comprehensive measurement of tourism expenditure in the economy of reference ( IRTS 2008, 4.20(a) ).

International Standard Industrial Classification of All Economic Activities : The International Standard Industrial Classification of All Economic Activities (ISIC) consists of a coherent and consistent classification structure of economic activities based on a set of internationally agreed concepts, definitions, principles and classification rules. It provides a comprehensive framework within which economic data can be collected and reported in a format that is designed for purposes of economic analysis, decision-taking and policymaking. The classification structure represents a standard format to organize detailed information about the state of an economy according to economic principles and perceptions (ISIC, Rev.4, 1).

International tourism : International tourism comprises inbound tourism and outbound tourism, that is to say, the activities of resident visitors outside the country of reference, either as part of domestic or outbound tourism trips and the activities of non-resident visitors within the country of reference on inbound tourism trips ( IRTS 2008, 2.40(c) ).

International visitor : An international traveller qualifies as an international visitor with respect to the country of reference if: (a) he/she is on a tourism trip and (b) he/she is a non-resident travelling in the country of reference or a resident travelling outside of it ( IRTS 2008, 2.42 ).

Job : The agreement between an employee and the employer defines a job and each self-employed person has a job ( SNA 2008, 19.30 ).

Measurement error : Error in reading, calculating or recording numerical value.

Meetings industry : To highlight purposes relevant to the meetings industry, if a trip’s main purpose is business/professional, it can be further subdivided into “attending meetings, conferences or congresses, trade fairs and exhibitions” and “other business and professional purposes”. The term meetings industry is preferred by the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA), Meeting Professionals International (MPI) and Reed Travel over the acronym MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions) which does not recognize the industrial nature of such activities.

Metadata : Data that defines and describes other data and processes.

MICE : See meetings industry.

Microdata : Non-aggregated observations, or measurements of characteristics of individual units.

Mirror statistics : Mirror statistics are used to conduct bilateral comparisons of two basic measures of a trade flow and are a traditional tool for detecting the causes of asymmetries in statistics (OECD GST, p. 335).

National tourism : National tourism comprises domestic tourism and outbound tourism, that is to say, the activities of resident visitors within and outside the country of reference, either as part of domestic or outbound tourism trips ( IRTS 2008, 2.40(b) ).

National tourism consumption : National tourism consumption is the tourism consumption of resident visitors, within and outside the economy of reference. It is the sum of domestic tourism consumption and outbound tourism consumption ( TSA:RMF 2008, figure 2.1 ).

National tourism expenditure : National tourism expenditure comprises all tourism expenditure of resident visitors within and outside the economy of reference. It is the sum of domestic tourism expenditure and outbound tourism expenditure ( IRTS 2008, 4.20(b) ).

Nationality : The concept of “country of residence” of a traveller is different from that of his/her nationality or citizenship ( IRTS 2008, 2.19 ).

Non-monetary indicators : Data measured in physical or other non-monetary units should not be considered a secondary part of a satellite account. They are essential components, both for the information they provide directly and in order to analyse the monetary data adequately ( SNA 2008, 29.84 ).

Observation unit : entity on which information is received and statistics are compiled.

Outbound tourism : Outbound tourism comprises the activities of a resident visitor outside the country of reference, either as part of an outbound tourism trip or as part of a domestic tourism trip ( IRTS 2008, 2.39(c) ).

Outbound tourism consumption : Outbound tourism consumption is the tourism consumption of a resident visitor outside the economy of reference ( TSA:RMF 2008, figure 2.1 ).

Outbound tourism expenditure : Outbound tourism expenditure is the tourism expenditure of a resident visitor outside the economy of reference ( IRTS 2008, 4.15(c) ).

Output : Output is defined as the goods and services produced by an establishment, a) excluding the value of any goods and services used in an activity for which the establishment does not assume the risk of using the products in production, and b) excluding the value of goods and services consumed by the same establishment except for goods and services used for capital formation (fixed capital or changes in inventories) or own final consumption ( SNA 2008, 6.89 ).

Output (main): The main output of a (productive) activity should be determined by reference to the value added of the goods sold or services rendered (ISIC rev.4, 114).

Pilot survey : The aim of a pilot survey is to test the questionnaire (pertinence of the questions, understanding of questions by those being interviewed, duration of the interview) and to check various potential sources for sampling and non-sampling errors: for instance, the place in which the surveys are carried out and the method used, the identification of any omitted answers and the reason for the omission, problems of communicating in various languages, translation, the mechanics of data collection, the organization of field work, etc.

Place of usual residence : The place of usual residence is the geographical place where the enumerated person usually resides, and is defined by the location of his/her principal dwelling (Principles and recommendations for population and housing censuses of the United Nations, 2.20 to 2.24).

Probability sample : A sample selected by a method based on the theory of probability (random process), that is, by a method involving knowledge of the likelihood of any unit being selected.

Production account : The production account records the activity of producing goods and services as defined within the SNA. Its balancing item, gross value added, is defined as the value of output less the value of intermediate consumption and is a measure of the contribution to GDP made by an individual producer, industry or sector. Gross value added is the source from which the primary incomes of the SNA are generated and is therefore carried forward into the primary distribution of income account. Value added and GDP may also be measured net by deducting consumption of fixed capital, a figure representing the decline in value during the period of the fixed capital used in a production process ( SNA 2008, 1.17 ).

Production : Economic production may be defined as an activity carried out under the control and responsibility of an institutional unit that uses inputs of labour, capital, and goods and services to produce outputs of goods or services ( SNA 2008, 6.24. ).

Purpose of a tourism trip (main): The main purpose of a tourism trip is defined as the purpose in the absence of which the trip would not have taken place ( IRTS 2008, 3.10. ). Classification of tourism trips according to the main purpose refers to nine categories: this typology allows the identification of different subsets of visitors (business visitors, transit visitors, etc.) See also destination of a tourism trip ( IRTS 2008, 3.14 ).

Questionnaire and Questionnaire design : Questionnaire is a group or sequence of questions designed to elicit information on a subject, or sequence of subjects, from a reporting unit or from another producer of official statistics. Questionnaire design is the design (text, order, and conditions for skipping) of the questions used to obtain the data needed for the survey.

Reference period : The period of time or point in time to which the measured observation is intended to refer.

Relevance : The degree to which statistics meet current and potential users' needs.

Reliability : Closeness of the initial estimated value to the subsequent estimated value.

Reporting unit : Unit that supplies the data for a given survey instance, like a questionnaire or interview. Reporting units may, or may not, be the same as the observation unit.

Residents/non-residents : The residents of a country are individuals whose centre of predominant economic interest is located in its economic territory. For a country, the non-residents are individuals whose centre of predominant economic interest is located outside its economic territory.

Response and non-response : Response and non-response to various elements of a survey entail potential errors.

Response error : Response errors may be defined as those arising from the interviewing process. Such errors may be due to a number of circumstances, such as inadequate concepts or questions; inadequate training; interviewer failures; respondent failures.

Same-day visitor (or excursionist): A visitor (domestic, inbound or outbound) is classified as a tourist (or overnight visitor), if his/her trip includes an overnight stay, or as a same-day visitor (or excursionist) otherwise ( IRTS 2008, 2.13 ).

Sample : A subset of a frame where elements are selected based on a process with a known probability of selection.

Sample survey : A survey which is carried out using a sampling method.

Sampling error : That part of the difference between a population value and an estimate thereof, derived from a random sample, which is due to the fact that only a subset of the population is enumerated.

Satellite accounts : There are two types of satellite accounts, serving two different functions. The first type, sometimes called an internal satellite, takes the full set of accounting rules and conventions of the SNA but focuses on a particular aspect of interest by moving away from the standard classifications and hierarchies. Examples are tourism, coffee production and environmental protection expenditure. The second type, called an external satellite, may add non-economic data or vary some of the accounting conventions or both. It is a particularly suitable way to explore new areas in a research context. An example may be the role of volunteer labour in the economy ( SNA 2008, 29.85 ).

SDMX, Statistical Data and Metadata Exchange : Set of technical standards and content-oriented guidelines, together with an IT architecture and tools, to be used for the efficient exchange and sharing of statistical data and metadata (SDMX).

Seasonal adjustment : Seasonal adjustment is a statistical technique to remove the effects of seasonal calendar influences on a series. Seasonal effects usually reflect the influence of the seasons themselves, either directly or through production series related to them, or social conventions. Other types of calendar variation occur as a result of influences such as number of days in the calendar period, the accounting or recording practices adopted or the incidence of moving holidays.

Self-employment job : Self-employment jobs are those jobs where remuneration is directly dependent upon the profits (or the potential of profits) derived from the goods or services produced.

Self-employed with paid employees : Self-employed with paid employees are classified as employers.

Self-employed without employees : Self-employed without employees are classified as own-account workers.

Services : Services are the result of a production activity that changes the conditions of the consuming units, or facilitates the exchange of products or financial assets. They cannot be traded separately from their production. By the time their production is completed, they must have been provided to the consumers ( SNA 2008, 6.17 ).

Social transfers in kind : A special case of transfers in kind is that of social transfers in kind. These consist of goods and services provided by general government and non-profit institutions serving households (NPISHs) that are delivered to individual households. Health and education services are the prime examples. Rather than provide a specified amount of money to be used to purchase medical and educational services, the services are often provided in kind to make sure that the need for the services is met. (Sometimes the recipient purchases the service and is reimbursed by the insurance or assistance scheme. Such a transaction is still treated as being in kind because the recipient is merely acting as the agent of the insurance scheme) (SNA 2008, 3.83).

Standard classification : Classifications that follow prescribed rules and are generally recommended and accepted.

Statistical error : The unknown difference between the retained value and the true value.

Statistical indicator : A data element that represents statistical data for a specified time, place, and other characteristics, and is corrected for at least one dimension (usually size) to allow for meaningful comparisons.

Statistical metadata : Data about statistical data.

Statistical unit : Entity about which information is sought and about which statistics are compiled. Statistical units may be identifiable legal or physical entities or statistical constructs.

Survey : An investigation about the characteristics of a given population by means of collecting data from a sample of that population and estimating their characteristics through the systematic use of statistical methodology.

System of National Accounts : The System of National Accounts (SNA) is the internationally agreed standard set of recommendations on how to compile measures of economic activity in accordance with strict accounting conventions based on economic principles. The recommendations are expressed in terms of a set of concepts, definitions, classifications and accounting rules that comprise the internationally agreed standard for measuring indicators of economic performance. The accounting framework of the SNA allows economic data to be compiled and presented in a format that is designed for purposes of economic analysis, decision-taking and policymaking ( SNA 2008, 1.1 ).

Total tourism internal demand : Total tourism internal demand, is the sum of internal tourism consumption, tourism gross fixed capital formation and tourism collective consumption ( TSA:RMF 2008, 4.114 ). It does not include outbound tourism consumption.

Tourism : Tourism refers to the activity of visitors ( IRTS 2008, 2.9 ).

Tourism characteristic activities : Tourism characteristic activities are the activities that typically produce tourism characteristic products. As the industrial origin of a product (the ISIC industry that produces it) is not a criterion for the aggregation of products within a similar CPC category, there is no strict one-to-one relationship between products and the industries producing them as their principal outputs ( IRTS 2008, 5.11 ).

Tourism characteristic products : Tourism characteristic products are those that satisfy one or both of the following criteria: a) Tourism expenditure on the product should represent a significant share total tourism expenditure (share-of-expenditure/demand condition); b) Tourism expenditure on the product should represent a significant share of the supply of the product in the economy (share-of-supply condition). This criterion implies that the supply of a tourism characteristic product would cease to exist in meaningful quantity in the absence of visitors ( IRTS 2008, 5.10 ).

Tourism connected products : Their significance within tourism analysis for the economy of reference is recognized although their link to tourism is very limited worldwide. Consequently, lists of such products will be country-specific ( IRTS 2008, 5.12 ).

Tourism consumption : Tourism consumption has the same formal definition as tourism expenditure. Nevertheless, the concept of tourism consumption used in the Tourism Satellite Account goes beyond that of tourism expenditure. Besides the amount paid for the acquisition of consumption goods and services, as well as valuables for own use or to give away, for and during tourism trips, which corresponds to monetary transactions (the focus of tourism expenditure), it also includes services associated with vacation accommodation on own account, tourism social transfers in kind and other imputed consumption. These transactions need to be estimated using sources different from information collected directly from the visitors, such as reports on home exchanges, estimations of rents associated with vacation homes, calculations of financial intermediation services indirectly measured (FISIM), etc. ( TSA:RMF 2008, 2.25 ).

Tourism direct gross domestic product : Tourism direct gross domestic product (TDGDP) is the sum of the part of gross value added (at basic prices) generated by all industries in response to internal tourism consumption plus the amount of net taxes on products and imports included within the value of this expenditure at purchasers’ prices ( TSA:RMF 2008, 4.96 ).

Tourism direct gross value added : Tourism direct gross value added (TDGVA) is the part of gross value added generated by tourism industries and other industries of the economy that directly serve visitors in response to internal tourism consumption ( TSA:RMF 2008, 4.88 ).

Tourism expenditure : Tourism expenditure refers to the amount paid for the acquisition of consumption goods and services, as well as valuables, for own use or to give away, for and during tourism trips. It includes expenditures by visitors themselves, as well as expenses that are paid for or reimbursed by others ( IRTS 2008, 4.2 ).

Tourism industries : The tourism industries comprise all establishments for which the principal activity is a tourism characteristic activity. Tourism industries (also referred to as tourism activities) are the activities that typically producetourism characteristic products. The term tourism industries is equivalent to tourism characteristic activities and the two terms are sometimes used synonymously in the IRTS 2008, 5.10, 5.11 and figure 5.1 .

Tourism ratio : For each variable of supply in the Tourism Satellite Account, the tourism ratiois the ratio between the total value of tourism share and total value of the corresponding variable in the Tourism Satellite Account expressed in percentage form ( TSA:RMF 2008, 4.56 ). (See also Tourism share).

Tourism Satellite Account : The Tourism Satellite Account is the second international standard on tourism statistics (Tourism Satellite Account: Recommended Methodological Framework 2008 –TSA:RMF 2008) that has been developed in order to present economic data relative to tourism within a framework of internal and external consistency with the rest of the statistical system through its link to the System of National Accounts. It is the basic reconciliation framework of tourism statistics. As a statistical tool for the economic accounting of tourism, the TSA can be seen as a set of 10 summary tables, each with their underlying data and representing a different aspect of the economic data relative to tourism: inbound, domestic tourism and outbound tourism expenditure, internal tourism expenditure, production accounts of tourism industries, the Gross Value Added (GVA) and Gross Domestic Product (GDP) attributable to tourism demand, employment, investment, government consumption, and non-monetary indicators.

Tourism Satellite Account aggregates : The compilation of the following aggregates, which represent a set of relevant indicators of the size of tourism in an economy is recommended ( TSA:RMF 2008, 4.81 ):

Tourism sector : The tourism sector, as contemplated in the TSA, is the cluster of production units in different industries that provide consumption goods and services demanded by visitors. Such industries are called tourism industries because visitor acquisition represents such a significant share of their supply that, in the absence of visitors, their production of these would cease to exist in meaningful quantity.

Tourism share : Tourism share is the share of the corresponding fraction of internal tourism consumption in each component of supply ( TSA:RMF 2008, 4.51 ). For each industry, the tourism share of output (in value), is the sum of the tourism share corresponding to each product component of its output ( TSA:RMF 2008, 4.55 ). (See also Tourism ratio ).

Tourism single-purpose consumer durable goods : Tourism single-purpose consumer durables is a specific category of consumer durable goods that include durable goods that are used exclusively, or almost exclusively, by individuals while on tourism trips ( TSA:RMF 2008 , 2.41 and Annex 5 ).

Tourism trip : Trips taken by visitors are tourism trips ( IRTS 2008, 2.29 ).

Tourist (or overnight visitor): A visitor (domestic, inbound or outbound) is classified as a tourist (or overnight visitor), if his/her trip includes an overnight stay, or as a same-day visitor (or excursionist) otherwise ( IRTS 2008, 2.13 ).

Travel / traveller : Travel refers to the activity of travellers. A traveller is someone who moves between different geographic locations, for any purpose and any duration ( IRTS 2008, 2.4 ). The visitor is a particular type of traveller and consequently tourism is a subset of travel.

Travel group : A travel group is made up of individuals or travel parties travelling together: examples are people travelling on the same package tour or youngsters attending a summer camp ( IRTS 2008, 3.5 ).

Travel item (in balance of payments): Travel is an item of the goods and services account of the balance of payments: travel credits cover goods and services for own use or to give away acquired from an economy by non-residents during visits to that economy. Travel debits cover goods and services for own use or to give away acquired from other economies by residents during visits to other economies ( BPM6, 10.86 ).

Travel party : A travel party is defined as visitors travelling together on a trip and whose expenditures are pooled ( IRTS 2008, 3.2 ).

Trip : A trip refers to the travel by a person from the time of departure from his/her usual residence until he/she returns: it thus refers to a round trip. Trips taken by visitors are tourism trips.

Usual environment: The usual environment of an individual, a key concept in tourism, is defined as the geographical area (though not necessarily a contiguous one) within which an individual conducts his/her regular life routines ( IRTS 2008, 2.21 ).

Usual residence : The place of usual residence is the geographical place where the enumerated person usually resides (Principles and recommendations for population and housing censuses of the United Nations, 2.16 to 2.18).

Vacation home : A vacation home (sometimes also designated as a holiday home) is a secondary dwelling that is visited by the members of the household mostly for purposes of recreation, vacation or any other form of leisure ( IRTS 2008, 2.27 ).

Valuables : Valuables are produced goods of considerable value that are not used primarily for purposes of production or consumption but are held as stores of value over time ( SNA 2008, 10.13 ).

Visit : A trip is made up of visits to different places.The term “tourism visit” refers to a stay in a place visited during a tourism trip ( IRTS 2008, 2.7 and 2.33 ).

Visitor : A visitor is a traveller taking a trip to a main destination outside his/her usual environment, for less than a year, for any main purpose (business, leisure or other personal purpose) other than tobe employed by a resident entity in the country or place visited ( IRTS 2008, 2.9 ). A visitor (domestic, inbound or outbound) is classified as a tourist (or overnight visitor), if his/her trip includes an overnight stay, or as a same-day visitor (or excursionist) otherwise ( IRTS 2008, 2.13 ).

4 new types of tourism

4 new types of tourism

Traveling is one of the most effective ways of exploring a place, culture or a destination. There are various types of tourism that you must have heard of: Leisure, business, sports, adventure and more. This is an article that represents 4 new types of tourism.

1. Sustainable tourism

People everywhere have been alarmed about the climatic conditions currently taking place all around the world and some tourism organizations are contributing their share of awareness regarding the subject. More and more people are being conscious about environmental health hazards and its impacts. People not only want to leave a long-term positive impact, but also contribute as much effort as they can to the local community when they are traveling. Many popular hotels in Europe are becoming eco-friendly , giving travelers an opportunity to travel healthy - these are referred to as Ecotel Hotels.

Ecotel in Amsterdam, Europe

2. Food tourism

Food tourism which is also known as culinary tourism, is the building block of any touristic destination or location that contributes to tourism. Food also represents the culture of a destination that delivers beauty and entertainment as their primary source of interest. More precisely, travelers might judge a tourist attraction based on the local dishes because food is tightly bound to the corresponding tourist spot. With that said, “food tourism” does not refer to eating only. It is the collection of activities such as; vegetable farming, produce market, tasting sessions, etc. The rise of food tourism is trending rapidly and should be planned carefully and efficiently. Tour radar allows you to explore and try  culinary experiences across the globe.

Variety of food tastings

3. Experiential tourism

Experiential travel, also known as immersion travel, is a form of tourism in which people focus on experiencing a country, city or particular place by actively and meaningfully engaging with its history, people, culture, food and environment. There’s been growing demand around culinary travel, cultural exploration, and activity-based travel experiences for a while now. So, before it runs its course, which it never will, you might want to try this type of tourism. Make wine in Bordeaux, cook street food in Vietnam, and go hiking in Patagonia are some of the famous examples of experiential tourism.

Advenure walking up the mountain

4. Wellness tourism

Due to increasing work schedules, and exhausting jobs, wellness tourism has become an escape route for many tourists. While wellness travel, referring to tourism promoting health and well-being through physical, psychological, or spiritual activities, has come into existence for a while, it’s only recently become massively popular. According to a travel column conducted by booking.com, 48% of travelers are willing to take holidays as a moment to “reflect and make better life choices”, and nearly 40% are interested in health or well-being travel experience. Obviously, recharging themselves by going for wellness travels would become one of the most desirable choices. This has led to an opportunity for travel agencies to diversify product line and discover a niche in the outstandingly competitive landscape. Would you want to take a break and visit beautiful destinations for wellness ?

Chill in the pool

Senior Lecturer at EHL Passugg

Got a story to share? Become an EHL Insights contributor

Learn More

Four Seasons Athens: Lessons from the field on Talent Management Systems

art and wine

Best practice for pairing wine with art in the classroom: A synesthetic approach

Designing Hotel and Restaurant Concepts is based on 7 components

The 7 components of designing a hotel concept

Do you want to learn how to create unique guest experiences?

By earning our two top hospitality degrees, you will enjoy the hotel management education of the future. Learn more and download the brochure.

EHL Group Route de Cojonnex 18 1000 Lausanne 25 Switzerland

© 2023 EHL Hospitality Business School, Switzerland, all rights reserved.

Welcome to VisitBritain/VisitEngland’s corporate website for UK tourism industry


Introduction to tourism

Defining tourism is not a simple matter, as it is a complex industry made up of many different businesses, the common theme being that they provide products and services to tourists/visitors.

Family sitting on grass at Trelissick Garden, Cornwall, England, UK

If a trip’s main purpose is business/professional, it is often subdivided into two further categories - 'attending meetings, conferences or congresses, trade fairs and exhibitions' and 'other business and professional purposes'.

Types of tourism

There are three basic forms of tourism: domestic tourism, inbound tourism, and outbound tourism.

Domestic tourism refers to activities of a visitor within their country of residence and outside of their home (e.g. a Brit visiting other parts of Britain).

Inbound tourism refers to the activities of a visitor from outside of country of residence (e.g. a Spaniard visiting Britain).

Outbound tourism refers to the activities of a resident visitor outside of their country of residence (e.g. a Brit visiting an overseas country).

The tourism industry in Britain is primarily a private sector industry , consisting of around 200,000 businesses, some very large including international hotel groups and airlines, as well as small and medium sized businesses, industry groups and bodies.

Domestic tourism is the core of businesses revenue (generally at least 80%, particularly outside of London), with demand peaking during the school holidays, particular Easter and Summer. Dealing with the demands of international visitors requires specialist knowledge, cultural understanding and investment.

Most UK statistics separate spending and volume of day visitors from overnight tourists. VisitBritain’s statistics and research reports focus on overseas visitors who come to Britain.

For domestic statistics (ie. data on people from within Britain who visit another location in Britain) get in touch with the tourism organisations for England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and London . 

What are tourism products?

'Tourism product' covers a number of different categories including:

The travel trade

It is useful to distinguish between trips which are booked directly and those which are booked via third parties such as the travel trade. The travel trade acts as an intermediary between visitors and tourism products. The travel trade has multiple purchasing power. One tour operator can make arrangements on behalf of hundreds of other people.

The growth of the internet means that more people are now booking their trips directly, either online or by phone after researching on the internet. However, the travel trade still plays a major role, particularly in longer-haul markets or where visitors have more complex travel arrangements.

The travel trade are likely to bring both individuals and groups to Britain. Take a look at our working with the travel trade section to find out more.

Useful links 

Find out more about VisitBritain/VisitEngland  

Sign-up to our newsletter to be kept up todate 

See opportunites to work with us  

See more about how inbound tourism is performing in Britain

Learn more about Britain's competitiveness

Get a breakdown of how individual markets and segments are performing

See how domestic overnight tourism is performing in England

Learn more about the size and value of the English Tourism market

You might also be interested in...

types and forms of tourism

Your own travelers

Your own travelers

Blog about life changing travel

What are the 8 types of tourism?

How many types of tourism are there.

Types of tourism

There are three basic forms of tourism: domestic tourism, inbound tourism, and outbound tourism.

What are the 8 sectors of tourism industry?

The 8 Sectors of the Tourism Industry

What are 10 types of tourism?

10 Important Types of Tourism in India

What are the 6 types of tourism?

Types of tourism:

What are the 7 sectors of tourism?

For many years, however, the tourism industry was classified into eight sectors: accommodations, adventure and recreation, attractions, events and conferences, food and beverage, tourism services, transportation, and travel trade (Yukon Department of Tourism and Culture, 2013).

What are the different forms of tourism?

Forms of tourism: There are three basic forms of tourism: domestic tourism, inbound tourism, and outbound tourism. These can be combined in various ways to derive the following additional forms of tourism: internal tourism, national tourism and international tourism.

What are the 8 sectors of hospitality?

What Is the Hospitality Industry?

What are the different components of tourism?

The five vital components of tourism system are Attraction, Accessibility, Accommodation, Amenities and Activities.

What are the four main type of tourism?

There are various types of tourism that you must have heard of: Leisure, business, sports, adventure and more. This is an article that represents 4 new types of tourism. … 4 new types of tourism

What are the 4 types of tourists?

Cohen (1972), a sociologist of tourism, classifies tourists into four types, based on the degree to which they seek familiarity and novelty: the drifter, the explorer, the individual mass tourist, and the organized mass tourist.

What are the 4 types of tourism chain?

The travel and tourism chain of distribution. Generally speaking, there are four key stages within the chain of distribution. These are: principals, wholesalers & aggregators, retailers, and consumers (see chart 1).

Forestry Bloq

Types/ Classification of Tourism

Types of tourism

Tourism was only restricted to certain people in the past. But, now with the development of infrastructures, has helped to spread atechnology around the world.

Now tourism is not only the privilege of the rich and wealthy but also normal people middle class people. It has been possible with the development of technology that everyone has access to travel if they wish to.

Also, with the development of jet travel, communication, new technology, tourism, and tourism has became one of the world’s largest and fastest-growing industry.

Travel and tourism also has emerged as a dominant economic force on the global scene. It now accounts for almost 15% of world’s total trade and is growing at a rapid Pace.

Types/ Categories of Tourism

Tourism can be categorized into various forms but is usually is categorized on the following basis:

On the basis of destination

Tourism is classified into tow types on the basis of destination namely: International and domestic tourism. International Tourism is further classified as Outbound Tourism and Inbound Tourism.

International Tourism:

Travel or tourism in which one person visits a foreign country living his residence either permanently or temporarily is called International tourism. In order to travel to a foreign country, one must follow a certain set of rules and laws.

For example, when travelling to another foreign country, tourist must have a valid id passport, visa, health documents, foreign exchange, etc.

International tourism is further classified into two types: Inbound Tourism and Outbound Tourism.

Inbound Tourism

When tourists of outside origin enter a particular country, it is called Inbound tourism. When people travel outside their host/native country to another country, then it is called inbound tourism for that country where he/she is traveling. For example when a tourist from Nepali origin travels to Japan then it is  Inbound tourism for Japan because foreign tourist comes to Japan.

Outbound Tourism

When a tourist/ traveler travels from their origin of the country to another country, it is called Outbound tourism. For example, when a tourist from Nepal travels to Japan then it is outbound tourism for Nepal and Inbound tourism for Japan.

Domestic Tourism

Tourism activities done within a residing country by its residents are called domestic tourism. This is an easy form of tourism where a tourist doesn’t have to have any legal requirements to travel. He/she can travel or visit any place within the country whenever they want.

Also, in domestic tourism, the tourist doesn’t have to face problems that he/she has to face when they are visiting a foreign country. International tourists usually have to face the problems of Language barrier, monetary exchange, and understanding rules and regulations, etc.

On the basis of Size

On the basis of size, tourism is divided into the following three types:

Mass tourism:

Mass tourism is when, a large group of people move together for a visit or travel. These types of tourism or travel are generally conducted by institutions, colleges, etc. for different purposes.

Controlled Tourism:

This is another type of tourism on the basis of size in which their area limited a number of individuals traveling to different parts. This type of tourism is mainly when a family or a group of close friends travels.

This, controlled type of tourism is what happens most because people mainly like to travel in a small group.

Elite Tourism/ Tourist:

This is another form or type of tourism where there is only one individual who travels through different parts, be it domestic or international. These type of tourists have an individual mindset and can be considered powerful mentally.


On the basis of Purpose

On the basis of purpose, there are different types of tourism and the list is extensive. Here are some of the popular types of tourism on the basis of purpose:

Tourism for Visiting Friends and Family

This is one of the major reasons why most people travel to different places during their free/ leisure time.  constitutes the act of traveling to home or friends and family or to a place of mutual convenience. VFR is particularly popular in areas that have been subjected to high immigration such as Pakistan, Mexico, and Poland.

Adventure Tourism

Adventure tourism is another type of tourism that involves experiencing your destination through physically participating in activities. This can involve a variety of actions such as; hiking, snorkeling, sky diving, and much more.

It mainly appeals to those seeking adrenaline and thrill. It involves removing oneself from the everyday routine and inserting into something unfamiliar. Adventure tourism locations are often referred to as ¨bucket list¨ destinations.

Medical Tourism

The process of traveling to different nations or parts of the same nation for the purpose of receiving medical care is called medical tourism . It is now in a growing trend.

People from developing countries tend to move to developed or better countries in order to receive the medical facilities that are not available in their residence.

Virtual Tourism

With the development of new technology, this type of tourism is getting more traction. Basically, virtual tourism is the act of using technology to simulate traveling experiences and their features.

Although virtual tourism will not replace physical visits or visits to destination, it has seen a lot of traction since the ongoing corona pandemic.

It has also been used as a marketing tool by different agencies to enhance the user experience.

Village Tourism

Village Tourism is the process of participating in a village/ rural lifestyle without disturbing the natural environment. This type of tour gives you the chance to explore the real villages unlike having spent a short time in different villages on the trek.

You have the chance to eat the traditional local food prepared in the neat and clean kitchen, which are delicious and are hygienic.

Urban Tourism

Urban tourism is a type of tourism activity that takes place in an urban space with its inherent attributes characterized by a non-agricultural-based economy such as administration, manufacturing, trade, and services and by being nodal points of transport. Urban/city destinations offer a broad and heterogeneous range of cultural, architectural, technological, social, and natural experiences and products for leisure and business.


Agritourism is another type of tourism where a tourist or a traveler involves in any agriculturally based operation or activity that brings him/ her to a farm or an agricultural land in different places.

Business Tourism

Business tourism is the provision of facilities and services to the millions of delegates who annually attend meetings, congresses, exhibitions, business events, incentive travel and corporate hospitality.

And there are many more types of tourism on the basis of purpose of travel or visit, some more types are listed below:

Types of Tourism 1

The 5 Phases of tourism & reacreation

Difference between tourist, tourism and recreation

Forestry Bloq

Forestry Bloq

Leave a reply cancel reply.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Name  *

Email  *

Add Comment

Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.

I accept the Privacy Policy

Post Comment

types and forms of tourism

The different types of Tourism according to Cohen, UNWTO, motivation and type

Home » Travel Industry » The different types of Tourism according to Cohen, UNWTO, motivation and type

types and forms of tourism

The Tourism industry has a direct impact on the global economy. In 2019 alone, 1.4 billion international arrivals were recorded, which is equivalent to one-fifth of the world’s population .

Due to the number of components that play an active role in tourism, there are an infinite number of criteria that can be used to classify it. In this article we will share what we consider to be the most significant of these criteria.

Types of Tourism according to the UNWTO

The World Tourism Organization defines three basic types of tourism in its glossary :

 These types can be combined with each other to give rise to other categories:

Beyond this categorization, there is a sociological approach, in which Erik Cohen, sociologist and winner of the UNWTO Ulysses Prize for his contribution to the knowledge of tourism, defines different types of tourism associated with the organization of the trip, as well as the nature of the interaction with the destinations.

Types of tourism according to Cohen:



Cohen also proposes a division based on the importance of travel in people’s lives .  There are five types of experience: 

Types of tourism according to motivation

Valene Smith, a key figure in the Anthropology of Tourism, defines in her introduction to “Host and Guest” the following types of tourism, according to the motivation of the trip:

And later she expands the classification according to Tourist types , where she describes:

They engage with the destination environment and are willing to adapt their behavior to the environment. They choose to visit less-traveled places and do not want to be seen as tourists.

Elite tourists

They also travel in small groups and adapt to local life, but for a limited time. They demand more amenities.

Off-beat tourists

These are independent tourists who break away from traditional itineraries and are looking to see new places. They use guidebooks for tips.

Unusual tourists

They travel on package tours or tours to visit indigenous communities. Their interest in local cultures is contemplative, and they demand the comforts of modern life so as not to take risks in the exchange.

Incipient mass tourists

Although not large in volume, these groups are beginning to demand infrastructure in the destinations they visit.

Mass tourists

They do not forgo the comforts of their country of origin and expect to be served in their own language.

Charter tourists

They purchase tours for short periods of time, demand high-quality services and have almost no interaction with the local environment.

There are infinite approaches and classifications for tourism around the world. A study by the Inter-American University for Development (UNID) makes an interesting distinction between “Classification” and “Typology” in which it defines eight kinds of tourism according to their form, which can, in turn, be subdivided into types.

Types of tourism according to type and purpose of the trip

Beyond these broad approaches, there is a series of categories approved by the UNWTO that is defined by the destination and purpose of the trip , and can be summarized as follows:

Rural Tourism

This takes place in destinations with low population density where agriculture and forestry are prevalent. The main objective is to experience nature, culture and productive activities.  

The core element is responsible contact with the natural environment, where the tourist observes and carries out activities in the open air.

Adventure tourism

Tourism in contact with nature, involving physical dexterity to undertake activities that are generally carried out in the open air.

Cultural Tourism

This takes place in destinations that have a remarkable cultural heritage and preserve its value. The objective is to discover and enjoy these values and traditions.

Business Tourism

Regardless of the destination, the reason for the trip is business or professionally motivated. This type of tourism entails a specific approach, as it is carried out by demanding travelers, with little time and particular needs.

Gastronomic Tourism

The trip must involve culinary experiences in the destination, which can range from enjoying a meal to learning how to cook. 

UNWTO notes the high potential of this category as a sustainable activity to boost the development of local economies and promote inclusiveness.

A growing trend worth highlighting is Wine Tourism.

Coastal, Maritime and Inland Water Tourism

Includes all water-related activities. The most prominent category is Sun and Beach Tourism . However, the following should not be overlooked:

Urban Tourism

This tourism takes place in a non-agricultural economic environment. Urban destinations offer a wealth of experiences related to art, architecture, commerce, social activities and good transport connectivity

Health tourism

Relates to the physical, mental or spiritual health benefit that travel can offer, provided by specific activities.

Mountain Tourism

The nature of the trip is determined by the relief of the destination. It is not related to adventure sports, but to enjoying the attributes of the environment.

Educational Tourism

The objective is focused on acquiring new skills and knowledge.

Sports Tourism

This is aimed at those who are going to enjoy or watch a sporting activity.

Each category will also be defined according to the needs and possibilities offered by the tourist destination, but in principle it is important to be able to sustain a basic classification in order to guide the statistics and to be able to work on comparisons and equivalences, depending on the focus we are addressing.


Erik Cohen , Major trends in contemporary tourism . Department of Sociology and Anthropology. The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, 2004

Erik Cohen , The sociology of tourism: Approaches, issues and findings.  in  Annual Review of Sociology, 10,373-392., 1984

Smith, Valene , Hosts and guests. The anthropology of tourism . Philadelphia, University of Pennsylvania Press, 1989. 

Cristóbal Reali

Hotelmize is an AI-driven Travel-tech startup company that allows travel companies to increase their hotel bookings’ profits by more than 35%, optimizing their purchasing rates post-booking in a fully automated procedure. Hotelmize monitors and processes millions of bookings and billions of US$ value each year.


types and forms of tourism

Related Posts

types and forms of tourism

The 46 Most Important Travel Industry Events for 2023

types and forms of tourism

Travel Trends for 2023 that People in the Industry Need to Know

types and forms of tourism

What is Industrial Tourism: Definition, Stats, Benefits & Real-Life Examples

Join the travel tech club! We’ll be sending you curated materials handpicked to help you learn more about interesting topics on travel and technology.


In order to continue enjoying our site, we ask that you confirm your identity as a human. Thank you very much for your cooperation.


The 21 Different Types of Tourists

There are different types of tourists around the world. These tourists typically specialize in a single type of tourism such as cultural holidays so they can be easily categorized.

While many tourists are generally interested in multiple aspects of holidaying, some simply prefer to stay in line with very specific interests as follows.

Table of Contents

1. Adventure tourists

2. backpack tourists, 3. business tourists, 4. cruise tourists, 5. cultural tourists, 6. domestic tourists, 7. eco-tourists, 8. food tourists, 9. generalists, 10. holiday tourists, 11. international tourists, 12. leisure tourists, 13. medical tourists, 14. reflective tourists, 15. religious tourists, 16. rural tourists, 17. romantic tourists, 18. senior tourists, 19. slow-paced tourists, 20. special interest tourists, 21. sports tourists.

types and forms of tourism

Adventure tourists are considered the most daring out there. These people are very active and they breathe experiences. Adventure tourists can be locked in a resort for a couple of weeks as this would simply ruin their vacation. They need action, change of scenery, meeting new people, and experiencing new things.

But what is adventure tourism? This style of tourism often involves outdoor adventures such as safari escapes, or desert dirt bike rides. It can involve any activity that is considered adventurous.

Adventure tourists are known for their high interest in getting into new experiences. If many tourists aren’t willing to travel far for their passions, this can be different for adventure tourists.

For example, some of the most unique swimming with the sharks’ experiences are very remote. Yet, adventure tourists always travel to these locations for the experience.

The most important word to describe these tourists is ‘experience’. All adventure seekers are normally interested in the experience more than being interested in simple everyday activities that are repetitive and monotone.

Adventure tourists aren’t afraid of looking beyond comfort as well. These holidaymakers aren’t always seeking to sleep in the most luxurious hotels. They might even sacrifice personal comfort for the awaiting experience.

types and forms of tourism

Backpack tourists are typically frugal and interested in multiple aspects of tourism. As their category name suggests, these tourists are normally only traveling with a backpack. This is where they keep clothes, shoes, sunglasses, charges, and even food. Traveling with a backpack isn’t easy. You have to carry it around with you all day.

So why do backpack tourist numbers increase year by year if it’s so difficult to carry a backpack all day? The first reason has to do with economics. It’s simply more affordable to stay in backpack hostels and bed and breakfasts than to stay in typical hotels. It’s also less worrying as these tourists have all their belongings with them at all times.

Most importantly, backpack tourism is fun. Those into this type of holidaymaking aren’t afraid to put on sports shoes and comfortable clothing and get moving. They can see and experience multiple other aspects of their traveling location compared to other tourists.

Backpack tourists also differentiate themselves from adventure tourists as they can be into different aspects such as seeing cultural landmarks and even traveling for good restaurants. They can combine all aspects of tourism with an adventure into a unique budget-friendly type of holidaymaking.

Shortly called ‘backpackers’ these tourists are seen everywhere from busy city streets to remote mountain paths. They are generally highly self-driven and they require minimum guidance to get around as they like to plan.

types and forms of tourism

Business tourists are a bit more difficult to stop compared to backpackers. Normally traveling for work purposes, business tourists are mostly interested in their work duties. Of course, things change during the day when these work duties are over.

Known for their tight schedule, business tourists are typically interested to discover the area where they need to work for a while. This means they can jump into the typical tourist attractions, check out local museums, restaurants, and parks.

Business tourists are normally blessed when it comes to expenses. Most business tourists have their transport and accommodation costs covered. This then means they might have money to get into shopping or to other activities that aren’t specifically free.

Those who travel for business are rarely called tourists, however. It’s only the group that has the time to become part-time tourists that are lucky enough to discover new places. There are plenty of professionals traveling for business with no time for holidaying.

New York is the number one business tourist destination. Known for its high number of business and economic development, the city also offers plenty of world-class landmarks to visit, making it the perfect stop for business tourists.

types and forms of tourism

A special type of tourist is only interested in going on a cruise. Many cruise tourists are seniors and seeing the world from a cruise ship is often a yearly holiday for them. Carnival Cruises and other similar companies offer complete tourist packages for these seniors. Almost all of them have the freedom to choose which countries they want to visit as cruises take tourists on different types of tours.

Some cruises are only bound to the Gulf of Mexico. Others travel around Central and South America. There are also very popular Mediterranean cruises for those who want to travel along Southern Europe’s coast from Portugal to Greece with stops in Spain, France, and Italy.

The main benefit of these cruises is they allow their customers to see different countries as special port stops are planned along the route.

Cruise tourists have also been known to be among those who love long holidays the most. There are plenty of cruses that last more than a month and this type of adventure can certainly count as the summer holiday.

Cruise tourists generally travel in couples or small groups. It’s rare to find solo cruise tourists. Most cabins available on cruise ships are for couples. This is why they can be the ideal type of escape for tourists and couples who want to relax for a few weeks.

Most cruise tourists appreciate good food, drinks, and the ability to socialize on the ship. This is why all cruise ships offer one or multiple restaurants, a common socializing area, a sunbathing deck, music nights, and even casino nights. This is why some tourists even prefer not to step off the ship even when docked as all amenities are covered for them.

types and forms of tourism

Culture is a sub-niche of traveling. Culture travelers differentiate themselves considerably from others as they choose different destinations to the typical beach resort escape. They might even travel to the same places as others but they visit different attractions.

As their name suggests, cultural tourists are into the culture. This vast area of interest typically covers, history with its museums, education with learning opportunities, ethnographies with its traditions, etc. Being a cultural tourist means you check out all of the cultural attractions of your destinations such as theatres, cinemas, and old cathedrals.

A cultural tourist is typically traveling at a slow pace so there’s sufficient time to admire and participate in different cultural events. Most cultural tourists can be seen in museums. Offering a glimpse into the history of an area, museums are ideal for cultural tourists as they often meet other tourists from around the world also interested in culture.

Cultural tourism flourishes in historically-rich cities and countries. Italy, France, and England are some of the most visited cultural hubs around the world. Italy’s renascence period with its painters, sculptors, and architects still attracts millions of tourists from around the world. These tourists are there to see these aspects that are unique to Italy as they can’t be reproduced anywhere else.

Being a cultural tourist also has its downsides. As every place is unique, cultural tourists typically want to visit more places that require a considerable budget. Visiting London is an experience that is certainly enriched by visiting other British cultural hubs such as Durham or Oxford. All of these cities can offer a combined cultural vacation of at least a week.

types and forms of tourism

One of the main categories of holidaymakers is represented by domestic tourists. These travelers are typically interested in what their native countries have to offer. Domestic tourism means discovering locals places within the country.

Domestic tourists travel by airplane, car, bicycle, or they even hitchhike. This is one of the most important aspects when it comes to discovering and rediscovering your own country.

All domestic tourism is typically based on the same rules and international tourism, with a busy season where an influx of travelers is expected. For most tourists, it is also a good opportunity to look at what makes their country great.

Domestic tourism incorporates all other types of tourism. Its sub-niches include cultural domestic tourism, culinary domestic tourism, adventure domestic tourism, leisure domestic tourism, etc.

Domestic tourists are also typically interested in multiple aspects of their travels. Visiting a city or a region is typically accompanied by discovering its main touristic attractions and things to do.

types and forms of tourism

Eco tourists are a growing niche of travelers highly preoccupied with sustainability, ecology, and general nature care. This type of tourism is growing fast around the world and it has a minimalistic approach with a reduced impact on the environment.

Riding dirt bikes through green fields is not ecotourism. But cycling through rural areas is considered eco-tourism, with its care for nature.

Most eco-tourists travel by car or plane to a certain destination. But they can also travel by bike or even walk multiple days to reach a destination or to experience all that it has to offer.

Rural Italy offers great world-class eco-tourism destinations. Small family farms here show tourists how to live like a local, cook like a local, and even how to care for animals.

There’s a modern side to eco-tourism as well. All types of reduced environmental impact technologies such as e-bikes are included in guided eco-tourism tours.

Most eco-tourists appreciate a way of life that cares for nature and what it has to offer. This is why excessive waste isn’t characteristic to these types of tourists which tend to be the best when it comes to not leaving traces of their visit even when out in nature.

Eco tourists are also smart when it comes to limiting the resources they need on holiday. This is why this type of tourism is often characterized as affordable. But it can still be expensive with the exception that these types of eco-tourists know how to make the most from very few resources.

types and forms of tourism

Food tourists are a special type of gourmand holidaymakers. Food tourist travels their country and other countries to eat diverse foods. This type of tourism is flourishing in the conditions in which foods become more standardized in developed nations and since certain meals can only be experienced among the locals who make them often.

Among food tourists, there are plenty of sub-divisions such as vegan food tourists or Asian food tourists. All of them are interested in very specific aspects of food. But most food tourists have an open mind to all types of foods and countries.

Cultures influence food considerably. This is why learning about culture often means tasting the food it makes and seeing what characterizes its delicious taste.

Food tours are now offered constantly by travel agents. Some of the best food travel destinations are those in South East Asia. Thailand is one of the specific destinations for good affordable food. Italy is also known for its rich culinary history and people from all over the world make it here to eat unique pizza and pasta.

But food tourists can also travel by themselves. To be considered a food tourist, travelers have to specifically set out to a certain destination for its food. But food tourists can also be found inside the country. Seattle and New York are cities with a rich culinary history.

Texas is known as the state to be in when it comes to stakes. People travel to these locations to eat the best foods as made by those with cooking experience.

Food tourists are also responsible for making various restaurants famous. For example, some of the best Michelin-star restaurants in Spain and the world are located in often isolated locations in small towns and even in villages.

Food tourists travel long distances to reach these restaurants. Once there, they get to eat the food made by famous chefs and they often taste delicious meals made with entirely local ingredients. These tourists are generally known for a culinary passion.

types and forms of tourism

Generalist tourists are a combination of all types of tourists. These travelers set out to a certain destination with an open mind to experience as much as it has to offer. A generalist tourist can look at a certain style of architecture one day and be interested in the food of a city the next day.

All generalist tourists are typically looking into a holiday experience. This means accommodation and even traveling to multiple places within the region is of interest.

Most holidaymakers are generalists. They travel to different locations with a plan to see its tourist attractions, check out its museums, and even get immersed in unique experiences.

Generalist tourism isn’t characterized by traveling to certain destinations or in a given timeframe. It is characterized by the general will to travel. This is why it can look very different from one tourist to another.

Those who like to travel often describe themselves as tourists, but this generally involves being a generalist tourist.

types and forms of tourism

Holiday tourists are those travelers that mainly go on holidays when traveling. A holiday is typically a period of at least a few days to relax away from home. Holiday tourists are the most popular type of travelers, especially among families.

Holidays are planned once or multiple times per year and this means taking time away from work and typical chores to travel.

You can see holiday tourists especially around resorts, beaches, camps, and all other locations typically associated as touristy. Florida is a good example of a holiday tourist state. It attracts people from all around the world who say the visit to the sunny state is a ‘holiday’.

The English expression ‘I holiday in’ refers to taking a yearly vacation in a certain location. This is why holiday tourists are those travelers who are typically on a longer vacation, typically the summer vacation which is the longest for most.

Holiday tourists can travel both by themselves and in groups. A holiday can be taken as a way to relax for health purposes. A doctor can recommend going on a holiday for patients under constant stress. Going on holiday is seen as taking a few days up to a few weeks off to relax completely and to have the occasion to reduce stress by worrying less.

Those on holiday are typically using the term in different situations. But their expressions can sometimes be confusing. ‘Holiday food’ is the food made at home, typically during religious celebrations such as Christmas or Easter. Holiday food is rarely used to refer to the meals consumed while away on a summer holiday.

types and forms of tourism

Most tourists are willing to travel to almost any location. But among general travelers, there’s a distinct category only willing to travel abroad. Many reasons make international tourists only consider holidaying abroad.

Among them is the experience of visiting most tourist attractions in their own countries. Another reason can be the appeal of a certain destination, particularly for its popularity.

International travel is at an all-time high in recent years. With the advent of low-cost air travel companies, the opportunities and the cost of international travel are in the favor of travelers. A large percentage of international tourists are planning their holidays accordingly as this is the type of travel that mostly rewards those who plan.

The perks of proper planning for international tourists include finding the lowest airplane ticket fares and the best accommodation prices. International travel can also be subject to extensive paperwork such as visa applications, proof of income, proof of residency, etc. While highly rewarding, international tourism can also require a bit more preparation than domestic tourism.

International tourists are also some of the most open when it comes to travel destinations. From the classic locations such as France and Spain to the most remote international travel locations such as Iceland, these travelers are typically willing to make an effort to reach the destination.

One of the perks of international travel is getting immersed in different cultures. This can be a bit more difficult to achieve with domestic travel. Major travel channels now recommend remote international travel due to the current pandemic. This is why Antarctica is one of the most remote international travel locations that gets recommended today.

types and forms of tourism

Leisure tourists are a type of generalist travelers. These tourists are interested in taking a break from reality, seeing new places, eating new foods, experiencing new adventures, but without sacrificing rest and comfort.

Unlike backpackers or adventure tourists, leisure tourists also feel the need to relax while traveling. This is what makes them even more interested in locations with good accommodation options.

Leisure tourists are generally characterized by a slower pace of travel compared to adventure tourists. They like visiting the most popular touristic areas in their destination. Cultural experiences can’t be overlooked by these tourists as well.

Apart from visiting landmarks, leisure tourists also appreciate good diverse food options. All in all, these types of tourists are among the most proficient when it comes to making the most of a trip and coming back come reinvigorated.

types and forms of tourism

Medical tourists are known as patients who travel for healthcare purposes. Both incoming and outgoing patients have been increasing in the US. There are a few factors that influence these two trends.

Incoming patients to the US are typically those coming for a very specific medical intervention. The high number of specialized doctors in the US makes it an attractive country for those coming from smaller countries where there isn’t a great selection of doctors or where there are no proven interventions for a certain condition.

Outgoing US patients are leaving for other smaller countries to get cheaper and often free medical healthcare. Medical insurance costs are constantly rising in the US and this makes it the country almost impossible to get medical treatment for those with a certain condition that isn’t covered by insurance.

US citizens prefer to travel as little as possible to get medical healthcare. Most don’t head to Europe but rather to Central and South America. Costa Rica is the main destination for US medical tourists. Patients head to the country for a few weeks and even for a few months. They might be recommended a rest period under supervision for a certain medical intervention.

The number one reason for US medical tourists outside of the country is dentistry work. All dentistry interventions in the US are considered among the most expensive in the world. It’s a routine to see US citizens traveling abroad only for a few days to get work done on teeth and for other oral care interventions.

Mexico is another popular destination for US citizens seeking to travel to get better healthcare. The proximity of the country, its low prices, and high numbers of doctors and clinics make it a viable option for medical tourists.

While further away from the US, India is also a top destination for medical tourists. Doctors here are some of the best-trained in the world. Since most also speak English, their medical services become tempting to US citizens. Singapore also gets a high influx of US medical tourists. Some of the world’s largest hospitals and some of the top-level doctors here make the small country highly attractive for patients who need complex medical treatment from around the world.

types and forms of tourism

Reflective tourists are characterized by the wish to travel and learn. It can be said learning has multiple faces in the case of these travelers. Tourists can travel to learn more about a place but they mostly travel to learn more about their heritage, where they come from, and the culture of their genealogy.

Europe is the main destination for reflective tourism. The continent has been known for waves of mass-level migration, especially to North and South America. This is why a rising number of reflective tourists make their way to Europe each year.

But what do these tourists do that others don’t? Reflective tourists are normally interested in culture hotspots. They visit museums, churches, theatres, exhibitions, stadiums, etc. These are all part of a wider spectrum of cultural attractions.

But reflective tourists can also dig a bit deeper into their family’s history. They might even visit local administration to get a trace of their lost relatives and get in contact to learn more about their family’s genealogy.

Reflective tourists are increasing in places such as Spain and Italy. Largely impacted by mass migration over a century ago and even today, these countries have been the main attraction for reflective tourists from the US, Canada, and Argentina.

Many of these countries even have tourism agencies specialized in offering services for reflective tourists on discovery or rediscovery trips.

types and forms of tourism

Religious tourists are one of the largest groups of travelers. These types of tourists are normally interested in heritage historic places of worship tied to their religion. Religious tourism is growing year by year but it isn’t new. Old pilgrimages were made thousands of years ago such as the Camino de Santiago in Spain.

Religious tourists can be split according to specific religions and branches within a religion. Jews are normally interested in traveling to Israel. Even Jews who aren’t into tourism are typically interested in visiting Israel at least once.

Jews also travel to other Jewish communities around the world frequently. They can even pitch in to build new Synagogues around the world or to restore historic places of worship.

Christians travel to Israel as well. They visit Jerusalem and Bethlehem mostly, without any particular interest in larger cities such as Tel Aviv. Christians also visit cathedrals, churches, and monasteries around the world.

Christian tour operators organized different circuit visits to specific countries where tourists get to see some of the most important Christian landmarks of the area.

Furthermore, Christians also organized mass pilgrimage events around the world. Other popular Christian destinations include The Vatican, especially for Catholic Christians.

Millions of Muslims visit Mecca each year. The celebrations here are normally held throughout the year. Located in Saudi Arabia, Mecca is a place of worship with strict rules. Pilgrims here aren’t allowed to drink alcohol, according to Muslim tradition.

types and forms of tourism

Rural tourists are normally interested in traditional villages. These types of tourists exist around the world. Rural tourism is completely dead in some areas around the world but it is also very popular in other areas.

Locronan in the Frances Britany region is the country’s main rural hotspot. It enjoys easy access from mainland Europe. Broad Campden in England’s Gloucestershire region is one of the most visited classic villages in the country and the world.

Its small streets, traditional homes, and relaxed way of life make it a high attraction for many of those interested in traveling away from large cities.

The perks of rural tourism include a slower way of traveling. It also allows tourists to meet the locals and improve socializing opportunities. Staying in rural areas also means enjoying different hotels. Far away from cities, the rural hotel often offers more wide-open spaces which encourage walks and time spent outdoors.

Rural tourists also have a few drawbacks to face. For example, there are not many great public transport links to some small villages around the world. This is why renting a car is often a must when it comes to making it to some of these remote towns and villages.

Rural tourism depends on your means of transport but this is what also protects it from becoming overly popular to a dangerous extent.

types and forms of tourism

Romantic tourists are some of the most relaxed when it comes to traveling. It’s often as much about the journey as it is about the destination with these tourists. Most couples into romantic tourism love gateways.

This is why those into this type of travel typically love to get out more, to explore, and not to be rushed as being away on holiday is all that matters.

Paris is the capital of romantic tourism. Walking the streets of this city is almost an experience worth the trip on its own. With plenty of romantic sights and great street-side cafes, couples can get to spend more time together in a relaxed atmosphere here.

Venice is another popular hotspot for couples. This is where tourists come to experience romantic gondola rides. Almost all of the couples here come to see the canals of the city. But there are plenty of other attractions for these tourists here.

Romantic tourists typically holiday through the year. According to tradition, the honeymoon is the most sought after the period for romantic gateways. Newlywed couples typically go away for a few weeks on the honeymoon, typically to one or multiple romantic destinations.

The specifics of this type of tourism are tied to accommodation requirements, good food, possible shopping opportunities, and the ability to go on long walks. Since romantic tourists like long walks, the most important aspect when choosing a destination is safety, especially for evening time walks.

types and forms of tourism

Seniors love to travel. Since they’ve reached an age when they don’t have to take care of the children or when they don’t have to go to work, seniors can often go on longer holidays further away from home.

Tourism for seniors is increasing in popularity. Two separate types of tourists can be found among them. Couples and group senior tourists are the two main types of travelers seen among the elderly.

Senior couples prefer romantic relaxing locations. Being out in nature or even visiting some of the most important tourist cities around the world are attractive proposals to senior tourists.

Group senior tourists are also popular. Seen in every large city around the world, these groups travel together, they eat in the same places, and they visit the same attractions.

The benefits of traveling in groups as seniors include better safety, the opportunity to socialize, a pre-planned trip, and plenty of opportunities to have fun.

types and forms of tourism

Slow-paced tourists are travelers who like to stay more in a certain location. Instead of spending two days in a city or village, these tourists can spend up to a week in a location. Slow-paced tourism can expand to holidays that take up to a month or even two months.

The benefits of slow-paced tourism are that it allows further discovery opportunities and more socializing opportunities. Slow-paced tourism is ideal for those interested in a cultural or discovery type of experience.

Villages in Germany are known for slow-paced tourism. People come here to see various traditions. They see livestock and farming that typically requires a slower pace of travel.

The benefits of slow travel are that it allows a deeper understanding of a certain culture. But even these types of travelers can be split into multiple sub-categories.

For example, slow-paced tourists can be interested in only visiting a country in appreciation for a certain personality. Slow-paced tourism developed the sub-niche of Shakespeare fans tourism in England.

types and forms of tourism

Special interest tourists generally visit a location for one thing only. This can be anything from a sports adventure opportunity or to visit a famous landmark. Examples of special interest tourists are seen all across the world.

Most special interests are tied to a historic location, a sports occasion, an individual, or a religious significance place. For example, tourists only go to Santiago de Compostela to visit the city’s cathedral. The same one-attraction or one-activity type of tourism is seen all around the world.

types and forms of tourism

Sports tourism is at an all-time high. This type of tourism isn’t new, but the rise of sports and sports personalities makes people travel. Sports tourists often travel with their teams. Baseball fans and football fans often travel to support their teams.

But these tourists can also travel without a specific sporting event in mind. They can travel to see stadiums or they can travel to see important places in sports.

One of the most visited stadiums in the world is Camp Nou in Barcelona. This is the home of the most popular sports team in the world, FC Barcelona. The stadium sees millions of tourists per year. A large number of them only come here to see the stadium and the place where their favorite football players play.

Sports tourism has plenty to offer all around the world. The second most popular football team in the world is FC Liverpool. Its stadium is normally visited by thousands of tourists and football fans from around the world even when it’s not a match day. Groups are split into hourly visits and they get to visit the stadium in a 1-hour tour.

But the most important type of sports tourists is the traveler going to a certain event. In the US, sports tourists are best represented by Superbowl fans. This is where travelers from all around the country try to reach the finals, an event which is often quite expensive and difficult to get into.

A similar event is seen in Europe with the final Champions League game where sports fans from around the continent fight to get tickets to the event and to fly to the destination stadium for the big game.

The drawbacks of sports tourism are the lack of diversity outside stadiums, sports museums, and sporting events. Most of the tourists interested in a particular part of sports are normally reserved when it comes to traveling for other sports attractions such as small private sports memorabilia collections.

Unlike other tourists, sports tourists are known to spend a lot on events. Most sports events worth traveling for are known for their high ticket prices.

This is why sports fans typically have to start saving sooner compared to other tourists, especially since accommodation prices are higher in the period of a large nearby sporting event.

Saving up is mandatory for these tourists who need to spend more than others to reach a destination.

Related posts:

The 34 Different Types of Holidays


Starting a Business

Growing a Business

Business News

Science & technology.

Money & Finance

Green Entrepreneur

Copyright © 2023 Entrepreneur Media, Inc. All rights reserved. Entrepreneur® and its related marks are registered trademarks of Entrepreneur Media Inc.

Carnival Cruise Wants Passengers to Have Fun in the Sun — But Do This, and You'll Get Burned With a New $500 Fee

The cruise line's updated contract follows a spate of unruly guest behavior across the tourism industry.

By Amanda Breen • Mar 3, 2023

Carnival Cruise Line hopes its guests relax and have fun on its fleet — up to a point.

The company is informing customers ahead of spring break that unruly passengers could be hit with a $500 fine and required to disembark prematurely, Fox News reported.

Related: One Way or Another Carnival Cruise Lines Should Be a Compelling Buy

Any passenger whose actions interfere with "the comfort, enjoyment, safety or well-being of other guests or crew" will likely be detained on board and removed from the ship, according to Carnival's updated cruise ticket contract .

In addition to paying the $500 fee, passengers will be on the hook for "reimbursement of expenses incurred by Carnival as a result of the detainment or disembarkation," per the contract.

Previously, Carnival also introduced a 1 a.m. curfew for passengers under 18 who aren't accompanied by an adult or participating in a ship-run activity for children.

The new fine follows a spate of inappropriate guest behavior in the tourism industry; brawls have broken out aboard cruise ships, and passengers traveling via plane have also frequently gotten out of hand .

Related: Cruise Sex Assaults Data Analysis Reveals Crime on Big Lines

"We do not expect to be implementing these fines much, but on those rare occasions when guests cross the line and disrupt the vacation of others, we will follow our guidelines," a Carnival spokesperson told Fox.

Entrepreneur Staff

Features Writer

Related Topics

Editor's pick, most popular, everything to know about the murdaugh family murders: from their legal legacy to multiple unexplained deaths.

The Murdaugh family's 100-year-old legal legacy came crashing down in just months due to lies, deceit, and several deaths.

By Sam Silverman

5 Types of Toxic Employees and How to Deal With Them (Infographic)

When it comes to the troublemakers in your organization you have two choices: cut them out or rein them in. Here's how to do the latter, like a boss.

By Kim Lachance Shandrow

Why the American Dream is Dead

Rising costs. Increased credit card debt. Wealth disparity is at an all-time high, and the division continues growing. The American dream is dead.

By Solo Ceesay

New Neuroscience Reveals the Best Way to Form Powerful Habits That Stick

New research proves that willpower and rewards aren't enough to build sustainable habits. Here's what else you need.

By Leah Borski

Southwest Airlines Is Getting Creative to Fix the Painful Plane-Boarding Process — Here's How

If it's successful, we might be saying goodbye to slow-moving lines.

By Amanda Breen

Figure Humanoid Robot Startup Comes Out of Stealth

Founder Brett Adcock has assembled talent from Boston Dynamics, Tesla, and Apple.

By Steve Huff

Successfully copied link


  1. Types of Tourism

    types and forms of tourism


    types and forms of tourism

  3. What Are The Types And Forms Of Tourism?

    types and forms of tourism

  4. Tourism

    types and forms of tourism

  5. What Are The Different Types Of Tourism?

    types and forms of tourism

  6. Articles Junction: Define Tourism? Type Feature of Tourism

    types and forms of tourism


  1. Impact of Tourism


  3. Types/Forms of Love|Valentine's Ready|Love

  4. Insect Sounds

  5. Introduction To Tourism

  6. Characteristics of Tourism


  1. Tourism

    Tourism, however, overlaps with other activities, interests, and processes, including, for example, pilgrimage. This gives rise to shared categories, such as "business tourism," "sports tourism," and " medical tourism " (international travel undertaken for the purpose of receiving medical care). The origins of tourism

  2. 8 types of tourism that you need to know

    Broadly speaking, there are three main forms of tourism based on the destination and country of departure, according to the UNWTO: domestic tourism, inbound tourism, and outbound tourism. Domestic tourism Domestic tourism is defined as traveling within your own country of residence, either for business or leisure purposes.

  3. Tourism

    Some most basic forms of tourism are the following: Adventure Tourism Atomic Tourism Bicycle Tours Beach Tourism Cultural Tourism Ecotourism Geotourism Industrial Tourism Medical Tourism Religious Tourism Rural Tourism Sex Tourism Space Tourism Sports Tourism Sustainable Tourism Virtual Tourism War Tourism Wildlife Tourism Classification of Tourism

  4. 18 Different Types Of Tourism

    18 Different Types of Tourism 1. Domestic Tourism 2. International Tourism 3. Outbound Tourism 4. Business Tourism 5. Adventure Tourism 6. Wildlife Tourism 7. Medical Tourism 8. Wellness Tourism 9. Pilgrimage and Spiritual Tourism 10. Cultural Tourism 11. Dark Tourism 12. Culinary Tourism 13. Celebrity Tourism or Film Tourism 14.

  5. 43 Types of Tourism

    The basic types of tourism. A-Z: ... Sailing is a form of transport and adventure tourism that also represents a lifestyle. Bicycle Tours Bicycling can serve as a form of transport or recreation on a trip. This ranges from bicycling around a village to cycling across continents.

  6. 150 types of tourism that are trending right now

    Many types of tourism are classified 'alternative', such as; volunteer tourism, sustainable tourism, community tourism and medical tourism. Ancestry tourism Ancestry tourism, also known as genealogy tourism or roots tourism, is tourism which involves travel to destinations that the tourist is connected to through ancestral means.

  7. 35 Types of Tourism

    The United States, Canada, New Zealand, and much of South America are popular destinations for this type of adventure travel. 2. Dark Tourism Paris catacombs Dark Tourism, a relatively new term, is defined as travel to an area where death, disaster, or tragedy occurred in the past.

  8. (PDF) Types and Forms of Tourism

    In [9], there are ten types of tourism: cultural tourism, faith tourism, gastronomy tourism, dark tourism, youth tourism, aged and disabled tourism, congress tourism, winter...

  9. Types of Tourism : 63+ Travel Tourism Types Around World

    Tourism sector keeps evolving from the basics types like domestic tourism, inbound tourism, and outbound tourism. What are the Types of Tourism? The tourism realm is vast comprising numerous types. From birth tourism and space tourism to garden tourism and beyond, the array of options available to travelers is truly remarkable.

  10. What Are The Types And Forms Of Tourism?

    Tourism has many forms based on the visit and alternative forms, so they are further divided into many types according to their nature. Forms of tourism are Ecotourism, Adventure Tourism, Beach Tourism, Atomic Tourism, Industrial Tourism, Bicycle Tours, Cultural Tourism, and Geo tourism. Moreover, these could be Medical Tourism, Rural Tourism ...

  11. Tourism: Forms and Types

    Tourism has two types and many forms on the bases of the purpose of visit and alternative forms of tourism. Tourism can be categorized as international and domestic tourism. Tourism has two types and various forms. On the basis of the movement of people tourism categorized into two types. These are following as: International Tourism

  12. 40 Different Types of Tourists [2021 Tourism Types Guide]

    3 Main Types of Tourism Some sources, like this one, divide the overarching category of "tourism" into three primary forms: domestic, inbound, and outbound tourism. Let's go through each one in turn!

  13. The 17 different types of travel

    Specialist travel, often referred to as special interest tourism, is a form of niche tourism. It groups together an indefinite number of types of tourism that are specialist in nature. Specialist tourism is often linked to a personal hobby, sport or interest. It may also be a type of travel that meets a specific need of a particular tourist or ...

  14. Glossary of tourism terms

    Forms of tourism: There are three basic forms of tourism: domestic tourism, inbound tourism, and outbound tourism. These can be combined in various ways to derive the following additional forms of tourism: internal tourism, national tourism and international tourism.

  15. The most common types of tourism

    PS - this type of tourism it's also called rural tourism and it's a killer for guest houses in particular. 5) Business tourism This type of tourism includes travelling to a different location to attend to business issues or work.

  16. 4 new types of tourism

    Tour radar allows you to explore and try culinary experiences across the globe. 3. Experiential tourism. Experiential travel, also known as immersion travel, is a form of tourism in which people focus on experiencing a country, city or particular place by actively and meaningfully engaging with its history, people, culture, food and environment.

  17. Introduction to tourism

    Types of tourism. There are three basic forms of tourism: domestic tourism, inbound tourism, and outbound tourism. Domestic tourism refers to activities of a visitor within their country of residence and outside of their home (e.g. a Brit visiting other parts of Britain).

  18. What are the 8 types of tourism?

    Forms of tourism: There are three basic forms of tourism: domestic tourism, inbound tourism, and outbound tourism. These can be combined in various ways to derive the following additional forms of tourism: internal tourism, national tourism and international tourism. What are the 8 sectors of hospitality? What Is the Hospitality Industry?

  19. Types/ Classification of Tourism

    And there are many more types of tourism on the basis of purpose of travel or visit, some more types are listed below: Geo-tourism Wildlife tourism Water tourism Recreational tourism Religious tourism Sex tourism Space tourism Wellness tourism Educational tourism Also Read: The 5 Phases of tourism & reacreation

  20. Category:Types of tourism

    Pages in category "Types of tourism" The following 97 pages are in this category, out of 97 total. This list may not reflect recent changes. * List of adjectival tourisms; A. ... Sustainable tourism; T. Tolkien tourism; Tombstone tourist; Tourism geography; U. Urban tourism; V. Virtual tour; Visiting friends and relatives; W. Walking tour; War ...

  21. The different types of Tourism according to Cohen, UNWTO ...

    Types of tourism according to type and purpose of the trip Rural Tourism Ecotourism Adventure tourism Cultural Tourism Business Tourism Gastronomic Tourism Coastal, Maritime and Inland Water Tourism Urban Tourism Health tourism Mountain Tourism Educational Tourism Sports Tourism Types of Tourism according to the UNWTO

  22. Tourism: Characteristics & Types

    Types of Tourism. The different forms of tourism are vast and the ways in which they can be grouped are many. For instance, you can generally group tourism into two types: domestic tourism, for ...

  23. The 21 Different Types of Tourists

    9. Generalists. Generalist tourists are a combination of all types of tourists. These travelers set out to a certain destination with an open mind to experience as much as it has to offer. A generalist tourist can look at a certain style of architecture one day and be interested in the food of a city the next day.

  24. Carnival Cruises Will Now Charge You a $500 Fee if You Do This

    Carnival Cruise Wants Passengers to Have Fun in the Sun — But Do This, and You'll Get Burned With a New $500 Fee. The cruise line's updated contract follows a spate of unruly guest behavior ...