Tourists are people who travel away from their homes for pleasure. Tourism is one of the fastest growing industries in the world and it generates a lot of jobs. the money spent by tourists adds to the wealth of countries (economic growth). For many years Europe and the USA have had the most tourism but in recent years there has been a lot of tourism development in Asia and the Middle East. 

In 2013, a total of 1.087 billion people travelled to another country as tourists. This has increased from just 25 million in 1950.

1 of 12


According to the world tourism organisation, the top four international destinations in 2010 were:

1. France - 78.95 million

2. United States - 60.88 million

3. China - 55.98 million

4. Spain - 53 million

2 of 12


  • People have greater disposable income. This is money left over once they have paid for essentials.
  • People have more paid holidays. In the UK, the number of weeks we have off work has increased from about two weeks in the 1950s to four to six weeks now.
  • Travel has become easier and cheaoer. More people have cars and our roads and motorways are better quality, making it easier to travel further in less time. Also, flights are cheaper and the internet makes it easy to plan and book a holiday.
  • People are visiting a wider range of places - partly because they have better knowledge and understanding of places. As well as learning about different places at school, we watch telivision programmes and browse the internet. This awarness increases peoples' expectations.
  • There is a greater variety of holidays to coose from. All inclusive package holidays have become very popular.
  • People have more leaisure time.
  • Many countries have invested money in facilities and infrastructure that make it easiers for tourists, such as roads, airports and hotels.
  • Ageing populations - people are able to travel in their free time that they have when they retire.
3 of 12


Tourists can be divided into different categories. This can be on the basis of which types of places they like to visit or the type of activities they like to be involved.

  • Beach holidays, eg spain and the maldives. People can relax on the beach or take part in water sports.
  • Outdorr adventure, eg skiing or walking in the european alps or the rocky mountains of north america
  • Cultural/historic, eg people like to visit historic sites, art galleries and museums in cities such as rome and paris. In cities like new york and london they can go shopping or see shows.
  • Ecotourism, eg small numbers of people go trekking in the amozon rainforest or on whale and dolphin conservation holidays in scotland. This type of tourism is designed to be sustainable.

Sustainable tourism provides tourism opportunities for visiters and jobs locals while protecting the environment and culture from damaging change. This means that in the future, people will continue to enjoy and benefit from them.

A common slogan is ' take only photos and leave only footprints'.

4 of 12


Tourism can provide jobs and improve the wealth of an area. Many developing countries are keen to develop tourism in order to become richer and to improve the quality of life for their people. However, when large numbers of visiters go to one place it is called mass tourism. This can have both positive and negative impacts on the area.

5 of 12



  • jobs created
  • more money for the country
  • local traditions and customs are kept alive because tourists enjoy traditional shows
  • money from tourists can be used to protect the natural landscape
  • new facilities for the tourists also benefit locals
  • greater demand for local food and crafts
6 of 12



  • jobs are often seasonal and are poorly paid
  • most money goes out of the area to big companies
  • culture and traditions change as outsiders arrive
  • damage to the natural environment 
  • overcrowding and traffic jams
  • prices increase in local shops at tourists are often more wealthy than the local population
7 of 12


Tourism can create lots of different types of jobs. Most of these are tertiary jobs. This is because they involve provididng a service to other people.

Some countries rely heavily on tourism and this can be a problem if tourists stop coming. Sometimes tourist numbers fall due to natural disasters such as floof or because of war or unrest. For example, some countries suffered from a fall in tourism after the 2004 asian tsunami and tourists were encouraged to leave Tunisia and Egypt during protests and unrest in 2011.

8 of 12


National parks are areas of great natural beauty that give the opportunity for recreation. Some parts of national parks contain many honeypot sites. They need to be looked after to prevent the large numbers of visitors destroying the attraction. National parks were introduced in the Uk in 1949. They have two key aims:

  • to preserve the countryside
  • to promote the public's enjoyment of the area.
9 of 12


  • peak district
  • lake district
  • snowdonia
  • dartmoor
  • pemrokeshire coast
  • north york moors
  • yorkshire dales
  • exmoor
  • northumberland
  • brecon beacons
  • the broads
  • new forest
  • south downs
10 of 12


  • Cairngorms
  • Loch Lomond and the Trossachs
11 of 12


Many different types of people use the UK national parks. Managing these different groups in terms of land use and conflict can sometimes be very difficult.

Below is a list of some of the groups who use the park:

  • farmers - grow crops and keep animals
  • holiday makers and day visiters - come on trips
  • local people need homes and places to work
  • the forestry commissiom - woodland is protected and new trees are planted
  • water companies - many parks are in highland, rural areas where dams can be built
  • conservationists - want reserves to protect wildlife
12 of 12


No comments have yet been made

Similar Geography resources:

See all Geography resources »See all Tourism resources »