Danger of Urban Tourism in Asia

By |November 25th, 2011|International Tourism Context, literature review, Master in Tourism Destination Management|0 Comments

This literature review is written by Wendy Yang as part of her NHTV Master in Tourism Destination Management.

Urban tourism has become one of main stream in tourism research since more and more urban areas promoted themselves as the most “charming”, ”sparkling” or ”touching” place on earth. In Asia, since so-called ‘tiger’ cities rose, city promotion combined with urban tourism has been view as a stage on which the state exhibits the success of economic success and modernized (Ward, 2005).Southeast Asia became a popular tourism destination to international visitors around 1970.From the beginning, tourism in Asia which consists of beach, sex, drugs, food and shopping has been based on urban. After two decades of development, in 1990s, East Asia pacific region received 16 percent of international tourists and 46 percent of them travelled to Southeast Asia (Mullins, 1999). According to UNWTO (2011), the average annual growth of international tourist arrivals in Southeast from 1995 to 2010 is 6.8 percent, second to Middle East.Hong Kong and Singapore, with spectacular growth, has been the best model for other Asian city states to imitate.In addition, Bangkok is also a good example to explain how being as a tourist gateway bring rapid growth to a city.The instant and obvious economic benefits and glory of “modern” have already driven more and more city authorities in Asia to develop tourism enthusiastically as the priority of policy. However, what if every city tries to attract tourists by using similar strategies and elements, like shopping, food and Skyscrapers (Leiper& Park, 2010). Furthermore these cities are all located in Asia, possibly modernized to different degree, but move to the same direction which early successful tourism Asian cities once went on.How do these cities make themselves to be more recognized? And do their efforts work? Is there any stakeholder without or within power but in urgency due to fast growth of urban tourism? Environmental issues about tourism in rural area have been discussed a lot, how about urban tourism? What kind of environmental impact could urban tourism cause?The ignored danger of urban tourism is the core of this literature review concerns about. […]