Bridging the Great Cultural Tourism Divide: Working with the Tourism Industry

Author(s): Meredith Langlitz; Ben Thomas

Year: 2015


A growing public interest in archaeotourism has resulted in greater numbers of visitors to archaeological sites as well as tourism being increasingly being seen as a use for sites for both social and economic reasons. While additional visitors can generate more revenue for local interests, they also increase human impact on the site. While tourism operators, archaeologists, and heritage managers frequently work at the same sites, they often work in isolation. While, many sites are preparing for tourists, collaboration between these groups would greatly strengthen the sustainability of the cultural assets and the amenities provided. A few years ago, the Archaeological Institute of America (AIA) worked with the Adventure Trade Travel Association (ATTA) to put together a manual on responsible tourism for visitors, site managers, and tour operators. Collaborations of this nature provide ideal starting points for cooperation and for archaeologist and cultural heritage managers to express their needs and concerns. This paper discusses the advantages of working with the tourism industry and provides insights into the positive nature of the collaboration between the AIA and ATTA.

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Bridging the Great Cultural Tourism Divide: Working with the Tourism Industry. Ben Thomas, Meredith Langlitz. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 396307)