Encyclopedia of Tourism

Living Edition
| Editors: Jafar Jafari, Honggen Xiao

Alternative tourism

  • Santana-Talavera AgustinEmail author
  • Fernadez-Betancort Heredina
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-01669-6_331-1

The concept and practice of alternative tourism arose from a response to the impact of mass tourism and as an expression of rebellion and search for adventure (Dernoi 1981). It involves tourism that respects the values of local people and nature, favoring encounters and exchanges and building experiences (Smith and Eadington 1994).

Origin and development

Alternative tourism is a consumer choice that is outside regular tourism channels. Since the consolidation of mass tourism in the late 1970s, there have always been some significant tourism practices which have not followed the usual lines of purchase and consumption of institutionalized tourism (tour operators, travelagencies, etc.). This kind of tourism has often been epitomized by drifters, hippies, or adventurers; however, the demand for differentiated and individualized experiences has slowly spread, apparently discerning these consumers from “tourists.” Generally, alternative tourism involves traveling with the minimum possible...


Tourism Industry Travel Agency Sustainable Tourism Rural Tourism Mass Tourism 
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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Santana-Talavera Agustin
    • 1
    Email author
  • Fernadez-Betancort Heredina
    • 2
  1. 1.Institute of Political and Social SciencesUniversity of La LagunaSan Cristobal de La LagunaSpain
  2. 2.Escuela Universitaria de Turismo of LanzaroteUniversity of Las Palmas de Gran CanariaLanzaroteSpain