Welcome to our ultimate guide to types of tourism! This collection is a comprehensive exploration of the diverse world of travel. 

In this guide, we delve into an extensive array of tourism types, each offering unique experiences and perspectives on the world. From thrill-seekers to animal enthusiasts and more, this guide covers a spectrum that caters to every traveler’s preference and style. 

Our aim is to enlighten both seasoned and novice tourism professionals and providers about the myriad ways people can explore, learn, and interact with different cultures, environments, and communities. 

Join us as we journey through each type of tourism, uncovering the nuances and specialties that make each one distinct and worthwhile.

What Are The Benefits of Understanding Types of Tourism?

As you explore this guide, consider both the benefits and limitations of these tourism types. 

Use them as a lens to view the vast, dynamic landscape of travel, keeping in mind that the real essence of tourism often lies in the unique, unclassifiable experiences that transcend these categories. 

This guide aims to spark ideas, foster understanding, and offer a structured overview while celebrating the diversity and complexity of travel experiences worldwide.

3 Benefits to Understanding Types of Tourism

  1. Identifying Personal Preferences and Destination Offerings – By exploring the different types of tourism, you can better understand what appeals to you as a traveler or what your destination can uniquely offer. This knowledge helps in tailoring travel experiences to personal tastes or in marketing a destination effectively.
  2. Competitive Analysis – For travel professionals and destination planners, understanding the breadth of tourism types provides a valuable tool for competitive analysis. By seeing what other destinations are doing, you can identify trends, gaps, and opportunities in the market.
  3. Learning from Successes and Failures – This guide serves as a repository of diverse tourism practices, allowing you to see what works and what doesn’t in different contexts. Such insights are invaluable for refining strategies and offerings in the tourism industry.

3 Limitations of Tourism Typologies

  1. Academic Orientation – While the categorization of tourism types is insightful, it’s important to recognize that this approach can be somewhat academic. The way these categories are defined and discussed may not always align with the more fluid, real-world experiences of travelers and industry practitioners.
  2. Tourist Self-Identification – Many tourists may not consciously identify with specific tourism labels like “wellness tourism seekers” or “adventure tourists.” Their motivations and behaviors might overlap across several types of tourism, making it challenging to pigeonhole their experiences into a single category.
  3. Guidelines, Not Rules – Consequently, it’s crucial to view these categories as flexible guidelines rather than rigid classifications. They offer a framework for understanding the broad spectrum of tourism, but they should be adapted and interpreted in the context of real-world experiences and market dynamics.

Now, I would like to begin expanding our list of types of tourism. I would like to give you 5 at a time. For each type of tourism, please give a 4-5 sentence paragraph explaining generally what this type of tourism consists of. Then give 3 bullets of examples from around the world that classify this type of tourism. Does that sound doable?

64 Types of Tourism (and Counting!)

Active tourism

Active tourism is centered around travel experiences that involve physical activities and outdoor adventures. It’s ideal for those who seek an energetic and health-conscious way to explore new destinations. 

This type of tourism includes a range of activities such as hiking tours, cycling tours, and running tours, each offering a unique way to connect with the landscape and culture of a place.

Examples of active tourism:

  • Hiking Tours in the Swiss Alps – Trekking through scenic mountain trails and enjoying breathtaking views.
  • Cycling Tours in the Loire Valley, France – Exploring picturesque villages and vineyards on bike.
  • Run Tours in the Italian Dolomites – Self-guided and guide-led tours through one of the most challenging and dramatic run destinations.

Adventure tourism

Adventure tourism is characterized by its focus on active, outdoor experiences that often involve an element of risk or physical exertion. It caters to travelers seeking excitement, adrenaline, and exploration in natural or exotic environments. 

This type of tourism usually involves activities like trekking, mountain biking, rock climbing, or water sports. It appeals to those who want to step outside their comfort zone and embrace nature’s challenges.

Examples of Adventure Tourism:

  • Trekking in the Himalayas, Nepal – Offering some of the world’s most breathtaking treks, including the famous Everest Base Camp trek.
  • White-water Rafting in the Grand Canyon, USA – Navigating the rapids of the Colorado River amidst stunning canyon scenery.
  • Safari Adventure in Kruger National Park, South Africa – Experiencing wildlife up close on guided safaris and bush walks.

Accessible tourism

Accessible tourism ensures travel and tourism opportunities are available to all people, regardless of their physical limitations, disabilities, or age. 

This form of tourism focuses on creating inclusive environments, from transportation to accommodations and attractions, ensuring accessibility for everyone. It’s about removing barriers to travel and embracing a diverse range of travelers.

Examples of accessible tourism:

  • Barrier-Free Travel in Berlin, Germany – Known for its accessible public transportation and facilities.
  • Accessible Beaches in Gold Coast, Australia – Featuring beach wheelchairs and accessible walkways.
  • Disney World, Florida, USA – Offering extensive accessibility options for visitors with various disabilities.


Agritourism, or agricultural tourism, involves visiting a working farm or any agricultural, horticultural, or agribusiness operation to enjoy, be educated, or be involved in activities. 

This type of tourism includes a wide range of activities like fruit picking, farm stays, wine tasting, and learning about rural ways of life. It’s a way for tourists to experience and understand the agricultural landscape and traditions.

Examples of agritourism:

  • Wine Tours in Tuscany, Italy – Exploring vineyards and tasting world-class wines.
  • Farm Stays in Vermont, USA – Participating in farm activities and enjoying local, farm-to-table meals.
  • Tea Plantation Tours in Kerala, India – Witnessing tea production and enjoying scenic plantation walks.

Alternative tourism

Alternative tourism is an approach that emphasizes travel outside of the conventional mass tourism model. It focuses on smaller groups, less trodden destinations, and experiences that promote environmental sustainability, cultural understanding, and local community engagement. 

This type of tourism often involves eco-friendly practices, cultural immersion, and responsible travel ethics.

Examples of alternative tourism:

  • Eco-Lodges in the Amazon Rainforest, Brazil – Providing sustainable accommodation and immersive rainforest experiences.
  • Community-based Tourism in Chiang Mai, Thailand – Engaging with local hill tribes and participating in their daily activities.
  • Responsible Wildlife Tours in Galapagos Islands, Ecuador – Promoting conservation and responsible interaction with unique wildlife.

Archaeological tourism

Archaeological tourism involves traveling to sites of historical and archaeological significance. It appeals to those interested in the ancient history and civilizations of different cultures. 

Tourists get to explore ruins, artifacts, and museums, often with the guidance of experts to enrich their understanding of the site’s historical context.

Examples of archaeological tourism:

  • Pyramids of Giza, Egypt – Exploring one of the most iconic and ancient wonders of the world.
  • Machu Picchu, Peru – Visiting the well-preserved ruins of an Incan city set high in the Andes Mountains.
  • Roman Colosseum, Italy – Touring the remains of the ancient Roman amphitheater, rich in historical significance.

Birth tourism

Birth tourism refers to the practice of traveling to another country for the purpose of giving birth in that country. The primary motivation is often to obtain certain benefits for the child, such as citizenship or access to superior healthcare. 

This type of tourism involves extended stays and often requires considerable planning and understanding of the destination’s legal and medical systems.

Examples of birth tourism:

  • Canada and the United States – Popular destinations for birth tourism due to the automatic right to citizenship for children born in these countries.
  • Brazil – Known for its high-quality healthcare facilities attracting birth tourists.
  • Germany – Offers excellent healthcare and allows children born to foreign parents to apply for citizenship under certain conditions.

Business tourism or MICE tourism

Business tourism, also known as corporate or MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, and Exhibitions) tourism, involves travel for business-related purposes. This includes attending conferences, meetings, trade shows, and corporate events. 

It’s a major sector of the tourism industry, often involving high-level logistics and luxury accommodations.

Examples of business tourism/MICE tourism:

  • Dubai, UAE – Frequently hosts international business conferences and exhibitions.
  • Las Vegas, USA – Known for its large convention centers and hosting major trade shows.
  • Singapore – A hub for corporate meetings and international business events in Asia.

Bird tourism

Bird tourism, or birding, is a form of natural tourism where individuals travel specifically to observe and study birds in their natural habitat. This type of tourism is popular among wildlife enthusiasts and nature photographers. 

It contributes to conservation efforts and promotes awareness of bird species and their environments.

Examples of bird tourism:

  • Costa Rica – Home to a diverse range of bird species, attracting bird watchers from around the world.
  • Kruger National Park, South Africa – Offers birding safaris to see African bird species.
  • Papua New Guinea – Known for its endemic bird species, including the famous Birds of Paradise.

Coffee tourism

Coffee tourism centers around visiting coffee plantations, learning about the coffee production process, and tasting various types of coffee. It provides insight into the journey of coffee from bean to cup, including cultivation, harvesting, and roasting. 

This type of tourism is especially popular among coffee enthusiasts and those interested in agritourism. It’s also a way to understand the cultural and economic importance of coffee in different regions.

Examples of coffee tourism:

  • Coffee Plantations in Colombia – Exploring the renowned coffee-growing regions and experiencing the rich flavor of Colombian coffee.
  • Café Tours in Vienna, Austria – Discovering the historic coffee houses and the city’s coffee culture.
  • Coffee Farms in Uganda – A special recommendation from Travel Marketing School’s founder, as he conducted a research project in Uganda, delving into the local coffee industry and its impact on communities.

Community-based tourism

Community-based tourism focuses on local communities and their cultures, traditions, and daily lives. It’s a form of sustainable tourism that aims to benefit local residents directly, often through immersive cultural experiences. 

This tourism type encourages respectful and meaningful interactions between tourists and host communities.

Examples of community-based tourism:

  • Sapa, Vietnam – Visitors engage with local hill tribes and experience traditional lifestyles.
  • Masai Mara, Kenya – Offers cultural experiences with the Maasai people, including village tours and traditional dance performances.
  • Oaxaca, Mexico – Known for community-based cultural tours, artisan workshops, and local cuisine.

Craft tourism

Craft tourism involves traveling to destinations known for unique local crafts and artisanal products. Tourists get the chance to see artisans at work, learn about traditional crafting techniques, and purchase handmade goods. 

This type of tourism supports local artisans and preserves cultural heritage.

Examples of craft tourism:

  • Marrakech, Morocco – Famous for its souks with traditional crafts like pottery, leather goods, and textiles.
  • Kyoto, Japan – Offers experiences in traditional Japanese crafts such as kimono making and woodworking.
  • Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA – Known for Native American and Spanish colonial crafts, including jewelry and pottery.

Cruise tourism

Cruise tourism involves traveling on cruise ships that offer various on-board amenities and stop at multiple destinations. It’s a unique way to explore different places while enjoying the luxury and entertainment provided on the cruise. 

This type of tourism is popular for its convenience, all-inclusive packages, and the ability to visit multiple locations in a single trip.

Examples of cruise tourism:

  • Caribbean Cruises – Known for their scenic island stops and vibrant on-board activities.
  • Mediterranean Cruises – Offering a journey through historic ports in countries like Italy, Greece, and Spain.
  • Alaskan Cruises – Showcasing stunning glacier views, wildlife, and unique shore excursions.

Culinary tourism or food tourism

Culinary tourism, also known as food tourism, involves traveling primarily for experiencing the food and culinary traditions of a particular region. 

This type of tourism is not just about dining out, but also includes activities like food tours, cooking classes, wine tastings, and visiting farmers’ markets. It appeals to those keen on exploring a destination’s culture through its gastronomy.

Examples of culinary tourism or food tourism:

  • Bologna, Italy – Known for its rich food culture, including dishes like Bolognese sauce and Parmigiano Reggiano cheese.
  • Bangkok, Thailand – Famous for its street food tours offering a taste of authentic Thai cuisine.
  • Oaxaca, Mexico – Offers culinary experiences centered around traditional Mexican cuisine, including mole and mezcal tasting.

Cultural Tourism

Cultural tourism involves traveling to experience the culture, traditions, and lifestyle of a particular area. This includes visiting historical sites, festivals, art galleries, theaters, and experiencing local customs. 

Cultural tourists seek to gain an authentic experience and a deeper understanding of the destination’s heritage.

Examples of cultural tourism:

  • Kyoto, Japan – Renowned for its temples, traditional tea ceremonies, and Geisha culture.
  • Paris, France – Offers a rich cultural experience with its world-famous museums, art galleries, and historical architecture.
  • Marrakech, Morocco – Known for its vibrant souks, historic palaces, and Berber culture.

Dark tourism

Dark tourism involves visiting sites associated with death, suffering, or tragedy. This controversial form of tourism is often educational and thought-provoking, aiming to commemorate and remember historical events. 

It includes visiting war zones, genocide memorials, disaster sites, and prisons.

Examples of dark tourism:

  • Auschwitz-Birkenau, Poland – A former Nazi concentration and extermination camp, now a museum and memorial.
  • Chernobyl, Ukraine – Tours to the site of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster.
  • Ground Zero, New York, USA – The site of the September 11 attacks, now home to a memorial and museum.

Dental tourism

Dental tourism involves traveling abroad for affordable dental care, surgery, or procedures that are more expensive in one’s home country. It’s often combined with the opportunity to vacation and relax during the recovery period. 

This type of tourism is popular due to the cost savings and quality of care available in certain countries.

Examples of dental tourism:

  • Bangkok, Thailand – Known for high-quality dental services at a fraction of the cost compared to Western countries.
  • Budapest, Hungary – A popular destination for dental care, offering modern clinics and experienced dentists.
  • Costa Rica – Attracts dental tourists with its combination of professional dental care and beautiful vacation spots.

Disaster tourism

Disaster tourism is the practice of visiting locations that have experienced natural or man-made disasters. It can be controversial, but when managed ethically, it can offer educational value and support for the affected communities through tourism revenue. 

This type of tourism includes visiting areas hit by hurricanes, earthquakes, or industrial catastrophes.

Examples of disaster tourism:

  • New Orleans, USA – Tours of areas affected by Hurricane Katrina, focusing on the disaster’s impact and recovery efforts.
  • Pompeii, Italy – An ancient city preserved in volcanic ash from Mount Vesuvius, offering insights into the life and sudden end of a Roman city.
  • Fukushima, Japan – Guided tours in the regions affected by the 2011 tsunami and nuclear disaster, focusing on the impacts and ongoing recovery.

Domestic tourism

Domestic tourism involves traveling within one’s own country rather than going abroad. This type of tourism allows individuals to explore different regions, cultures, and attractions within their national borders. It’s a way to support local economies and discover the diversity of one’s own country. 

Domestic travel can range from weekend getaways to extended tours and can include a variety of activities like city breaks, countryside excursions, or coastal holidays.

Examples of domestic tourism:

  • The Lake District, England – Known for its stunning landscapes, hiking trails, and quaint villages.
  • Yellowstone National Park, USA – Attracts visitors with its geothermal features and wildlife.
  • Great Ocean Road, Australia – A scenic drive famous for its rugged coastline, including the Twelve Apostles.

Drug tourism

Drug tourism refers to travel to a region to obtain or use drugs that are illegal in one’s home country. This controversial type of tourism often involves substances that are culturally or legally accepted in the destination. 

It’s important to approach this topic with an understanding of the legal and ethical implications involved.

Examples of drug tourism:

  • Amsterdam, Netherlands – Known for its coffee shops where certain types of cannabis are legally sold and consumed.
  • Ayahuasca Retreats in Peru – Offering spiritual experiences with the traditional Ayahuasca brew, often under the guidance of a shaman.
  • Certain States in the USA – Where the recreational use of cannabis is legal, attracting tourists from other states or countries.


Ecotourism focuses on responsible travel to natural areas, conserving the environment, and improving the well-being of local people. It emphasizes minimizing the impact of tourism, promoting environmental awareness, and providing direct financial benefits for conservation and community development. 

Ecotourism experiences often include wildlife viewing, nature hikes, and educational activities about local ecosystems.

Examples of ecotourism:

  • Costa Rica – A global leader in ecotourism, known for its rainforest tours and conservation efforts.
  • The Galapagos Islands, Ecuador – Offers unique wildlife experiences with a strong emphasis on preserving the islands’ delicate ecosystem.
  • Kenya – Renowned for its safari experiences in national parks that combine wildlife viewing with conservation efforts.

Educational Tourism

Educational tourism is travel aimed at acquiring knowledge or learning something new, including student exchanges, study tours, and academic sabbaticals.

This type of tourism can encompass a wide range of subjects, from language learning to cultural studies, and is often facilitated by educational institutions.

Examples of educational tourism:

  • Language Schools in Spain – Offering immersive Spanish language learning experiences.
  • Historical Tours in Rome, Italy – Focusing on the city’s rich ancient history and architecture.
  • Cooking Schools in Thailand – Where tourists learn to cook traditional Thai dishes in a hands-on setting.

Enotourism/Wine tourism

Enotourism, or wine tourism, involves visiting vineyards, wineries, wine festivals, and tasting rooms to experience the process of wine production and to taste wines in their natural setting. 

This type of tourism often includes learning about viticulture and winemaking processes, and experiencing the culture and cuisine associated with wine regions.

Examples of enotourism or wine tourism:

  • Bordeaux, France – Famous for its wine tours and tastings in renowned vineyards.
  • Napa Valley, California, USA – Known for its world-class wineries and beautiful landscapes.
  • Tuscany, Italy – Offers picturesque vineyards, wine tastings, and tours of historic wineries.

Experiential tourism

Experiential tourism focuses on creating immersive experiences for travelers, allowing them to actively engage with the history, people, culture, food, and environment of a destination. Instead of being passive observers, tourists are encouraged to participate actively in the local way of life. 

This type of tourism often involves authentic, hands-on activities that provide a deeper understanding of the local culture.

Examples of experiential tourism:

  • Live Like a Local in Bali, Indonesia – Engaging in traditional Balinese daily activities, from rice farming to temple rituals.
  • Culinary Classes in France – Learning to cook regional French dishes with local chefs.
  • Maori Cultural Experiences in New Zealand – Immersive experiences in Maori history, art, and traditional ceremonies.

Extreme tourism

Extreme tourism caters to tourists seeking adrenaline-pumping activities and experiences that involve a high level of risk. This type of tourism is for thrill-seekers who enjoy challenging themselves physically and mentally. 

Activities often take place in extreme or unusual environments, from remote wilderness to harsh climates.

Examples of extreme tourism:

  • Mount Everest Expeditions, Nepal – Attempting to summit the world’s highest peak.
  • Volcano Boarding in Nicaragua – Sliding down the slopes of an active volcano on a specialized board.
  • Ice Diving in Antarctica – Exploring underwater environments beneath the ice.

Fashion tourism

Fashion tourism revolves around traveling to destinations known for their influence in the world of fashion. This includes visiting fashion capitals for events like Fashion Week, exploring famous shopping districts, and attending fashion shows. 

It’s a blend of travel and the love of fashion, style, and shopping.

Examples of fashion tourism:

  • Milan Fashion Week, Italy – Attending one of the most prestigious events in the fashion world.
  • Shopping in Paris, France – Exploring high-end fashion boutiques in areas like the Champs-Élysées.
  • Garment District Tour in New York City, USA – Discovering the heart of America’s fashion industry.

Film tourism

Film tourism involves visiting locations where famous movies or TV shows were filmed. This type of tourism allows fans to connect with their favorite media by seeing and experiencing the actual places featured on screen. 

It includes guided tours of film sets, themed attractions, and visiting iconic locations from popular films.

Examples of film tourism:

  • Hobbiton Movie Set, New Zealand – Exploring the filming location of “The Lord of the Rings” and “The Hobbit” trilogies.
  • Game of Thrones Tours in Dubrovnik, Croatia – Visiting key filming locations from the popular TV series.
  • Harry Potter Studio Tour in London, England – Experiencing the behind-the-scenes of the Harry Potter movie series.

Genealogy tourism

Genealogy tourism, or ancestry tourism, involves individuals traveling to explore their family roots and heritage. This journey often includes visiting ancestral hometowns, exploring archives and libraries, and connecting with distant relatives. 

It’s a personal form of tourism that provides a deeper understanding of one’s family history and cultural background.

Examples of genealogy tourism:

  • Visiting Ellis Island, USA – Exploring the gateway for millions of immigrants and searching historical records.
  • Ancestral Villages in China – Travelers visit their ancestral villages to learn about family history and participate in traditional customs.
  • Genealogy Research in Ireland – Utilizing resources like the National Library of Ireland to trace Irish ancestry and visiting ancestral homes.


Geotourism focuses on the geographical characteristics of a destination, including its culture, aesthetics, heritage, and well-being of its inhabitants. It emphasizes a deep respect and appreciation for the intrinsic natural and cultural features of a place. 

Geotourism often involves exploring unique geological features, landscapes, and local traditions in a sustainable manner.

Examples of geotourism:

  • Grand Canyon, USA – Marveling at one of the world’s most renowned geological wonders.
  • Icelandic Geothermal Springs – Experiencing geysers, hot springs, and volcanic landscapes.
  • The Great Barrier Reef, Australia – Exploring the world’s largest coral reef system, renowned for its vibrant marine life.

Halal tourism

Halal tourism caters to Muslim travelers who wish to adhere to their Islamic beliefs while traveling. This includes access to Halal food, prayer facilities, and accommodation that aligns with Islamic practices. 

Halal tourism also often involves experiences that respect Islamic culture and heritage.

Examples of halal tourism:

  • Istanbul, Turkey – Offering a rich Islamic heritage, Halal-friendly hotels, and mosques.
  • Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia – Known for its Halal culinary scene and Islamic art museums.
  • Dubai, UAE – Providing luxury Halal travel experiences, from shopping to accommodation.

Health tourism

Health tourism involves traveling to improve one’s physical or mental health, often including medical treatments, wellness retreats, or fitness programs. 

This type of tourism can range from spa and wellness retreats to undergoing medical procedures or therapies in specialized facilities abroad.

Examples of health tourism:

  • Spa Retreats in Bali, Indonesia – Offering holistic wellness experiences, including traditional Balinese treatments.
  • Yoga Retreats in Rishikesh, India – Known as the ‘Yoga Capital of the World’, offering a range of yoga and meditation retreats.
  • Thermal Baths in Budapest, Hungary – Famous for its thermal springs and spa culture.

Heritage tourism

Heritage tourism involves visiting sites of historical or cultural significance to understand and appreciate the past. It includes exploring ancient ruins, historical landmarks, museums, and culturally rich neighborhoods. 

This type of tourism is about connecting with the history, traditions, and heritage of a place.

Examples of heritage tourism:

  • The Pyramids of Giza, Egypt – Exploring one of the most significant archaeological sites in the world.
  • The Historic Center of Rome, Italy – Immersing in the rich history of the Roman Empire.
  • The Great Wall of China – Visiting the iconic symbol of China’s historical defense architecture.

Honeymoon tourism

Honeymoon tourism caters to newlyweds seeking a romantic and memorable experience post-wedding. It often involves luxury accommodations, picturesque settings, and romantic activities. 

Destinations range from tropical beaches to cozy mountain retreats, tailored to provide an intimate and special experience for couples.

Examples of honeymoon tourism:

  • Maldives – Known for its overwater bungalows and idyllic island settings.
  • Paris, France – Often dubbed the ‘City of Love’, popular for its romantic ambiance.
  • Santorini, Greece – Famous for its stunning sunsets, white-washed buildings, and beautiful beaches.

Industrial tourism

Industrial tourism involves visiting industrial sites, factories, or other facilities to learn about their history, operations, and contributions to society. This type of tourism offers insight into various industries, from traditional manufacturing to high-tech sectors. 

Visitors get a chance to see how products are made and understand the industrial heritage of a region.

Examples of industrial tourism:

  • Boeing Factory Tour, Seattle, USA – Observing the assembly of airplanes in the world’s largest building by volume.
  • Guinness Storehouse, Dublin, Ireland – Exploring the history and production of the famous beer.
  • BMW Welt, Munich, Germany – Showcasing the brand’s history and offering insights into modern car manufacturing.

Jungle tourism

Jungle tourism focuses on exploring dense rainforests or jungles, offering an immersive experience in rich, biodiverse environments. This type of tourism often includes guided treks, wildlife watching, and learning about the ecosystem and indigenous cultures. 

It’s popular among nature enthusiasts and adventure seekers.

Examples of jungle tourism:

  • Amazon Rainforest, Brazil – Experiencing the world’s largest tropical rainforest and its diverse wildlife.
  • Taman Negara, Malaysia – Exploring one of the world’s oldest rainforests with guided jungle treks.
  • Madagascar – Visiting unique ecosystems with a vast array of endemic species, from lemurs to exotic plants.

Justice tourism

Justice tourism is a form of travel concerned with social justice and human rights. It involves visiting places significant to historical or contemporary struggles for justice and equality. 

This type of tourism aims to educate travelers about issues like poverty, oppression, and civil rights, often involving interactions with local communities.

Examples of justice tourism:

  • Robben Island, South Africa – The prison where Nelson Mandela was held, now a symbol of the struggle against apartheid.
  • Civil Rights Trail, USA – Visiting key sites of the American Civil Rights Movement.
  • Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, Berlin, Germany – Reflecting on the history and impact of the Holocaust.

LGBT tourism

LGBT tourism caters to members of the LGBT community and is focused on destinations, accommodations, and events that are welcoming and inclusive. This type of tourism includes pride festivals, cruises, and destinations known for their supportive and vibrant LGBT scenes. 

It promotes a safe and open environment for LGBT travelers.

Examples of LGBT tourism:

  • San Francisco, USA – Known for its inclusive and vibrant LGBT community and history.
  • Amsterdam, Netherlands – Hosting one of the world’s most famous pride parades and offering a welcoming atmosphere.
  • Mykonos, Greece – A popular LGBT-friendly island with a lively nightlife and beautiful beaches.

Literary tourism

Literary tourism involves visiting locations associated with famous authors, literary works, or literary history. This can include authors’ homes, settings of famous novels, or literary festivals. 

It appeals to book lovers and those interested in the world of literature and storytelling.

Examples of literary tourism:

  • Stratford-upon-Avon, England – The birthplace of William Shakespeare, with various related sites and theaters.
  • Brontë Parsonage Museum, England – The former home of the Brontë sisters, set in the landscape that inspired their novels.
  • Joyce’s Dublin, Ireland – Exploring the city through the lens of James Joyce’s works, particularly “Ulysses.”

Medical tourism

Medical tourism involves traveling to another country for medical care, often driven by lower costs, higher quality services, or access to specific treatments not available in one’s home country. 

This can include a wide range of medical services, from elective procedures like cosmetic surgery to complex treatments such as organ transplants or fertility therapy.

Examples of medical tourism:

  • Bangkok, Thailand – Renowned for high-quality medical care at affordable prices, especially in cosmetic and reconstructive surgery.
  • India – Offers advanced medical treatments like cardiac surgery and orthopedics at competitive prices.
  • South Korea – Known for its advanced medical technology, particularly in areas like dermatology and plastic surgery.

Militarism heritage tourism

Militarism heritage tourism involves visiting sites significant to military history, such as battlefields, war memorials, and military museums. 

This type of tourism is aimed at understanding the historical context of wars and conflicts and honoring the memory of those who served.

Examples of militarism heritage tourism:

  • Normandy, France – Visiting the D-Day landing beaches and war cemeteries from World War II.
  • Gettysburg, USA – Exploring the site of the pivotal battle in the American Civil War.
  • Hiroshima Peace Memorial, Japan – Reflecting on the impact of the atomic bomb and promoting peace.

Music tourism

Music tourism is travel motivated by the love of music, whether it’s visiting famous music destinations, attending concerts and festivals, or exploring the history of certain music genres. 

This type of tourism can include a variety of musical experiences, from classical music concerts to rock festivals.

Examples of music tourism:

  • Nashville, USA – Known as the “Music City” and famous for its country music scene and attractions like the Grand Ole Opry.
  • Vienna, Austria – Celebrated for its classical music heritage and venues like the Vienna State Opera.
  • New Orleans, USA – Renowned for its jazz music, lively music festivals, and vibrant street performances.

Nautical tourism

Nautical tourism encompasses activities and experiences related to sailing and boating. This can include yacht chartering, sailing regattas, and visiting maritime museums. 

Nautical tourism is popular among those who enjoy the sea and water-based activities.

Examples of nautical tourism:

  • Greek Islands Yacht Tour – Exploring the Aegean Sea and visiting various Greek islands by boat.
  • Croatian Coastline – Offering sailing experiences along its scenic Adriatic coast.
  • Monaco Yacht Show – One of the most prestigious nautical events showcasing luxury yachting.

Ocean tourism

Ocean tourism focuses on activities and experiences in and around the ocean. This includes a wide range of water-based activities such as scuba diving, snorkeling, ocean kayaking, and whale watching. 

It’s ideal for those who wish to explore marine life and oceanic environments.

Examples of ocean tourism:

  • Great Barrier Reef, Australia – World-famous for scuba diving and snorkeling, showcasing an array of marine life.
  • Whale Watching in Maui, Hawaii – Offering opportunities to see humpback whales in their natural habitat.
  • Surfing in Bali, Indonesia – Known for its excellent surfing spots and vibrant marine life.

Photography tourism

Photography tourism caters to those who travel specifically to capture photographs of scenic, cultural, or unique subjects. This can include wildlife photography safaris, visits to picturesque landscapes, or urban photography tours. 

It’s ideal for both amateur and professional photographers looking to expand their portfolios with diverse and compelling images.

Examples of photography tourism:

  • Iceland – Popular for capturing natural phenomena like the Northern Lights and dramatic landscapes.
  • Masai Mara, Kenya – A prime destination for wildlife photography, especially during the Great Migration.
  • Paris, France – Offering classic urban photography opportunities with iconic landmarks like the Eiffel Tower.

Political tourism

Political tourism involves traveling to sites of significant political interest, including historical landmarks, political institutions, or locations known for political events. 

This type of tourism is aimed at those interested in political history, activism, or contemporary political scenes.

Examples of political tourism:

  • Washington D.C., USA – Visiting the U.S. Capitol, White House, and various political memorials.
  • Berlin, Germany – Exploring sites like the Berlin Wall and Reichstag building, rich in political history.
  • Beijing, China – Home to the Forbidden City and Tiananmen Square, significant in Chinese political history.

Rail tourism

Rail tourism is centered around journeys on trains, offering a unique way to view landscapes and explore regions. This can range from luxury train experiences to scenic rail routes that traverse through picturesque countryside, mountains, or coastal areas. 

It appeals to those who enjoy the romance and nostalgia of train travel.

Examples of rail tourism:

  • Trans-Siberian Railway, Russia – One of the world’s longest train journeys, crossing diverse landscapes from Moscow to Vladivostok.
  • The Ghan, Australia – A coast-to-coast rail journey across the Australian continent, from Darwin to Adelaide.
  • Glacier Express, Switzerland – Renowned for its panoramic views of the Swiss Alps.

Regenerative tourism

Regenerative tourism goes beyond sustainability, aiming to leave a place better than it was found. This approach involves engaging in travel practices that restore and enhance the environment, local culture, and community well-being. 

It’s about creating a positive impact and contributing to the regeneration of the ecosystems and communities visited.

Examples of regenerative tourism:

  • Reforestation Projects in the Amazon Rainforest, Brazil – Participating in efforts to replant and restore parts of the rainforest.
  • Cultural Preservation Programs in Bali, Indonesia – Supporting initiatives that maintain and rejuvenate traditional Balinese arts and crafts.
  • Ecosystem Restoration Camps, Various Locations – Joining camps that focus on restoring degraded landscapes and promoting ecological health.

Religious tourism

Religious tourism, or pilgrimage, involves traveling to religious sites, temples, churches, or regions significant to specific faiths. 

This type of tourism can be a spiritual journey or a way to explore the historical and cultural aspects of different religions.

Examples of religious tourism:

  • Mecca, Saudi Arabia – The holiest city in Islam, visited by millions of Muslims for the Hajj pilgrimage.
  • Vatican City – Attracting millions of Christian pilgrims and tourists to St. Peter’s Basilica and the Sistine Chapel.
  • Varanasi, India – One of the oldest and most sacred cities in Hinduism, famous for its ghats and temples.

Rural tourism

Rural tourism focuses on visiting rural areas to experience and understand the rural lifestyle, culture, and traditions. It often involves staying in villages, farmhouses, or homestays, and participating in activities like hiking, local crafts, and agriculture. 

This type of tourism is popular among those seeking a tranquil and authentic experience away from urban centers.

Examples of rural tourism:

  • Tuscany, Italy – Known for its picturesque countryside, vineyards, and traditional farm stays.
  • Shirakawa-go, Japan – Offers a unique experience in traditional thatched-roof villages.
  • Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, USA – Provides insight into the Amish lifestyle and culture.

Science tourism

Science tourism is centered around visiting sites of scientific interest, such as observatories, science museums, and research facilities. It appeals to those interested in learning about various scientific fields, from astronomy to geology. 

This type of tourism often includes educational tours and interactive experiences designed to enhance understanding of scientific principles and discoveries.

Examples of science tourism:

  • CERN, Switzerland – Touring the world’s largest particle physics laboratory.
  • Kennedy Space Center, Florida, USA – Exploring NASA’s launch complex and space exploration exhibits.
  • Galapagos Islands, Ecuador – Known for their unique biodiversity, offering insights into evolutionary biology.

Senior tourism

Senior tourism caters to older travelers, often offering tailored travel experiences that are accessible and comfortable for them. This can include cultural tours, cruise trips, and leisure destinations with a focus on health, relaxation, and low-impact activities. 

Senior tourism prioritizes ease of access, quality of services, and opportunities for social interaction.

Examples of senior tourism:

  • Cruise trips in the Mediterranean – Providing accessible and leisurely travel experiences with stops at historical cities.
  • Health resorts in Baden-Baden, Germany – Offering therapeutic spa treatments in a serene environment.
  • Cultural tours in Japan – Guided tours with a focus on comfort and accessibility, exploring traditional Japanese culture.

Sex tourism

Sex tourism involves traveling to engage in sexual activities, often with commercial sex workers. This controversial and often illegal form of tourism raises significant ethical and legal concerns. 

It’s important to approach this topic with an understanding of the legal, social, and human rights implications involved.

Examples of sex tourism:

  • Bangkok, Thailand – Known for its red-light districts, though this aspect is controversial and subject to legal and ethical scrutiny.
  • Amsterdam, Netherlands – Notable for its legalized and regulated Red Light District, though the city has been taking measures to address issues related to sex tourism.
  • Nevada, USA – Certain areas in Nevada have legal brothels, though this is a highly regulated industry.

Slow tourism

Slow tourism emphasizes taking time to enjoy and experience the destination deeply rather than trying to see everything in a rush. It’s about immersing oneself in the local culture, environment, and way of life, often involving longer stays, and sustainable and mindful travel practices.

Examples of slow tourism:

  • Canal Boating in France – Exploring the countryside at a leisurely pace through its network of canals.
  • Walking tours in Tuscany, Italy – Enjoying the landscape, cuisine, and culture at a relaxed pace.
  • Stay in a Ryokan, Japan – Experiencing traditional Japanese hospitality and culture in a serene setting.

Slum tourism

Slum tourism involves visiting impoverished urban areas to see firsthand the life of residents in these communities. While it can raise awareness about poverty and social issues, it also raises ethical concerns about exploitation and voyeurism. 

Responsible slum tourism should focus on respectful engagement and supporting local communities.

Examples of slum tourism:

  • Dharavi, Mumbai, India – Guided tours that aim to break stereotypes and highlight the industriousness of the community.
  • Township tours in South Africa – Visits to townships with a focus on cultural exchange and understanding the local history and social challenges.
  • Favela tours in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil – Offering insights into the vibrant culture and community resilience in favelas.

Snow and ice tourism

Snow and ice tourism is all about travel experiences in cold and snowy environments. This type of tourism is popular for winter sports enthusiasts and those who enjoy the beauty of snowy landscapes. 

Activities include skiing, snowboarding, ice skating, and visiting ice hotels or festivals.

Examples of snow and ice tourism:

  • Skiing in Aspen, Colorado, USA – Offering world-class ski resorts and winter sports facilities.
  • Ice Hotel Stay in Jukkasjärvi, Sweden – Experiencing unique accommodation entirely made of ice and snow.
  • Harbin Ice Festival, China – Visiting one of the world’s largest ice and snow sculpture festivals.

Space tourism

Space tourism represents the cutting-edge of travel, offering civilians the opportunity to experience space. This emerging type of tourism includes suborbital flights that provide a few minutes of weightlessness and an incredible view of Earth from space. 

It’s a frontier for wealthy adventurers and science enthusiasts.

Examples of space tourism:

  • Virgin Galactic – Offering suborbital spaceflights for tourists.
  • SpaceX – Developing orbital space tourism missions.
  • International Space Station – Proposed private visits facilitated by companies like Axiom Space.

Sports tourism

Sports tourism involves traveling to participate in or observe sporting events. This includes international competitions like the Olympics, marathons, football matches, or golf tournaments. 

Sports tourism appeals to fans and athletes alike, offering them a chance to experience the excitement and camaraderie of sports in different locales.

Examples of sports tourism:

  • FIFA World Cup, Various Locations – Attending one of the most prestigious and widely-viewed sports events in the world.
  • Boston Marathon, USA – Participating or spectating in one of the oldest annual marathons.
  • The Masters Golf Tournament, Augusta, USA – Observing one of the four major championships in professional golf.

Sustainable tourism

Sustainable tourism focuses on traveling in a way that minimizes environmental impact and promotes conservation while benefiting local communities. 

It involves responsible travel practices, supporting eco-friendly accommodations, and participating in activities that respect local culture and the environment.

Examples of sustainable tourism:

  • Eco-lodges in Costa Rica – Staying in accommodations dedicated to conservation and sustainability.
  • Community-based Eco Tours in Kenya – Participating in wildlife safaris that support conservation efforts and community development.
  • Responsible Trekking in Nepal – Following eco-friendly practices and supporting local Sherpa communities.

Virtual tourism

Virtual tourism offers the experience of visiting a place through digital means, such as virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), or online tours. It’s a way to explore destinations from home, making travel accessible to those unable to travel physically. 

Virtual tours can cover historic sites, museums, natural wonders, and more.

  • Virtual Reality Tours of the Louvre, France – Exploring the world-famous museum from the comfort of home.
  • Online Guided Tours of the Great Wall of China – Experiencing one of the world’s most iconic landmarks digitally.
  • Augmented Reality Experiences of Rome’s Ancient Sites – Using AR technology to see historical ruins in their original glory.


Voluntourism combines travel with volunteering for a cause, typically involving work towards environmental conservation, education, or community development. 

While it allows travelers to contribute to positive change, it’s important to choose programs that genuinely benefit the local community and environment.

Examples of voluntourism:

  • Teaching English in Rural Schools, Nepal – Assisting in educational institutions in underprivileged areas.
  • Marine Conservation in the Great Barrier Reef, Australia – Participating in coral reef restoration and research projects.
  • Community Building Projects – Helping construct basic infrastructure like schools and healthcare facilities.

War tourism

War tourism involves visiting sites significant to wartime history, such as battlefields, war memorials, and museums. 

It’s a form of tourism that seeks to understand the history of conflicts and honor the memories of those who fought in them.

Examples of war tourism:

  • Vietnam War Sites, Vietnam – Exploring locations like the Cu Chi Tunnels and War Remnants Museum.
  • Normandy Beaches, France – Visiting WWII D-Day landing sites and memorials.
  • Somme Battlefields, France – Touring sites and cemeteries from one of the largest battles of the First World War.

Wellness tourism

Wellness tourism is centered around health and well-being, offering activities and experiences that promote physical, mental, and spiritual health. This type of tourism often includes spa retreats, yoga and meditation workshops, fitness programs, and holistic wellness therapies.

Examples of wellness tourism:

  • Yoga Retreats in Rishikesh, India – Engaging in yoga and meditation in the birthplace of yoga.
  • Thermal Spas in Iceland – Relaxing in natural hot springs surrounded by unique landscapes.
  • Wellness Resorts in Bali, Indonesia – Participating in holistic wellness programs in a serene, tropical setting.

Wildlife tourism

Wildlife tourism involves traveling to observe and interact with animals in their natural habitats. It’s a way for tourists to experience wildlife up close while promoting conservation and awareness of biodiversity. 

Activities can include safaris, wildlife sanctuaries, and bird watching.

Examples of wildlife tourism:

  • African Safaris, Kenya or Tanzania – Experiencing the diverse wildlife of the African savannah, including the “Big Five.”
  • Gorilla Trekking in Rwanda and Uganda – Encountering mountain gorillas in their natural rainforest habitat.
  • Penguin Colonies in Antarctica – Observing penguins and other Antarctic wildlife in one of the most remote areas of the world.

Zoological tourism

Zoological tourism focuses on visiting zoos, aquariums, and wildlife parks where visitors can see and learn about various animal species. 

This form of tourism is educational, often highlighting conservation efforts and providing insights into animal behavior and habitats.

Examples of zoological tourism:

  • San Diego Zoo, USA – Known for its vast variety of species and conservation efforts.
  • Singapore Zoo, Singapore – Offering an immersive experience with its open-concept enclosures and diverse wildlife.
  • Monterey Bay Aquarium, USA – Renowned for its marine life exhibits and ocean conservation education.

What Other Types Of Tourism Are Out There?

Have we missed any types of tourism that you think should be included on this list? Are there other examples you’d like to share? Send us a message and let us know what else should be included on this list.

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