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43 Types of Tourism

Tourism is travel in pursuit of fun, joy or experience. This can be contrasted with travel that has a productive purpose such as a business trip. The following are common examples of tourism.

Leisure Tourism

Travel in pursuit of leisure activities such as reading in a hammock.

Recreation Tourism

Recreation activities such as ice skating on a canal.

Interest Tourism

Interests such as history. For example, visiting a place where significant historical events have occurred.

Nature Tourism

Experiences in nature such as canoeing.

Beach Tourism

Beaches are a particularly popular type of nature tourism that can involve recreation such as surfing and beach culture.

Sports Tourism

Travel to attend or participate in sporting events.

Adventure Tourism

Pursuit of risk taking experiences such as river rafting.

Road Trips

The tradition of traveling to a destination by car, often with many stops along the way.


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.


Large ships that offer a complete vacation including lodging, entertainment, recreation and transport to destinations. This can have a very high environmental impact, particularly in terms of air pollution.

Day Cruises

Day trips on various types of vessel that can include sailboats.

Music Tourism

Travel to attend or participate in a musical performance.


Art and performance art related tourism such as travel to visit an art museum or enjoy a night at the opera.


Nighttime activities such as clubs or karaoke.

Traditional Culture

Traditional culture such as a festival that has attracted tourists to a city for decades or perhaps centuries.

Pop Culture

Popular culture such as a cosplay conference.

Wellness Tourism

Travel that involves "wellness" services such as a spa.

Luxury Tourism

Experiences that are designed to be more extravagant and comfortable that average. For example, a hotel with distinctive architecture, a posh location, a full array of services and large rooms that are lavishly appointed.

Budget Tourism

Services designed to minimize prices for tourists. For example, a youth hostel with an attractive price for backpackers on a budget.

Family Tourism

Services designed for families. For example, a hotel with a playroom and other facilities for children such as a pool with a water slide.

Gap Year

The practice of taking an extended period to travel or do something completely different with your life. This is often viewed as a rite of passage for youth.

Day Trip

A short trip that doesn't involve an overnight stay. This is often part of a longer vacation. For example, an American visiting Kyoto who takes a day trip to Nara.

Volunteer Tourism

Traveling to do volunteer work.

Religious Tourism

Traveling to places or events of religious significance to a faith.


The practice of sleeping in minimal structures such as tents to be close to nature.


A more luxurious form of camping that may offer unusual and spacious outdoor structures and food & beverage services.


Agritourism is any tourism that takes place on a working farm. For example, participating in the process of harvesting and roasting tea.

Culinary Tourism

Pursuit of fine cuisine. For example, going to Italy in search of authentic dining experiences.

Shopping Tourism

Traveling to shop. This can be driven by differences in prices and the availability of goods.

Fashion Tourism

Visiting fashion related places or events such as a fashion week.


Traveling to see famous spots of interest.

Urban Hiking

The process of freely exploring a city often without much of a plan.


Entertainment such as theme parks or musical theatre.

Movie Tourism

Travel driven by interesting in films. This can include movie related museums, theme parks and travel to locations from movies.


Attending conferences such as industry events. Although industry conferences are business events, some attract a large number of tourists. For example, auto shows that attract automobile enthusiasts.

Industrial Tourism

Visiting industrial sites both past and present. For example, a tour of an operational chocolate factory.

Space Tourism

The ability to pay to go into orbit around the Earth. This may eventually be expanded to other destinations such as the moon. Likely to have a very high environmental footprint due to the energy required to reach orbit.


Excessive tourism that causes economic bads to the point that it threatens the local quality of life or environment. For example, a reef that can support 20 divers a day that receives 580 divers a day.


Trips that are organized and managed. This often involves being bused around in large groups to famous sightseeing spots. Tends to contribute to overtourism.

Day Tours

Organized day trips for a fee. In some cases, these are smaller groups or involve travel to spots off the beaten path.

Alternative Tourism

Attempts to avoid crowds and cliches in travel to find unique experiences.


Tourism that is specifically designed not to damage the environment or harm people. For example, a state that restricts the number of visitors to a popular snorkeling spot and requires visitors to watch an educational video about how to snorkel without damaging the reef. In some cases, ecotourism is a marketing term that can be viewed as greenwashing.


This is the complete list of articles we have written about tourism.
Quality Of Life
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J. Celic, "Air pollution from cruise ships," Proceedings ELMAR-2014, 2014, pp. 1-4.