What is a tourist destination? Is it a hotel, city,country or region, Bierman (2003, P.2) defines a destination as “a country, state, region, city or town which is marketed or markets itself as a place for tourists to visit.”
This course will provide you with a clear understanding of what constitutes the all-around product - the tourist destination. Read the Course guideto gain a better understanding of the requirements of the course - the learning outcomes are listed below.
Otago Polytechnic will be running this course from April 23 - 24 June 2012. If you would like to join this course, please contact Hillary Jenkins.
1. Identify and define a tourism destination
2. Distinguish and evaluate between different categories of destination
3. Understand and evaluate the complexity of the tourist destination as a tourism product
4. Understand the process involved with marketing a destination
Destinations..... they all share certain characteristics; attractions, amenities and accessibility. Germany's Black Forest and Puerto Rico's, Luquillo Beachare attractions but because they do not exist primarily or necessarily to serve tourists' needs they are defined as destinations. That is neither was purpose built to serve the interest of tourism but have been modified, or due to particular curcumstances now do this.
Lets look at these top 30 destinations and attractions. Can you identify them?
Can you name the 10 disappearing natural wonders of the world? Try to guess before you look. These presenters from Sky Tv's Travel Channel certainly had something to say about their favourite destinations - what about you. Take 10 minutes to read this then complete your own take-off.
Destinations - The Product
Destinations are naturally formed or can be constructed (so does this make Dubai an attraction or a destination?). Most are managed for example, National Parks are left in their natural state but have to be managed to provide access, parking facilities, walks, accommodation.
SWOT analysis an acronym for Strength, Weakness, Opportunity and Threats is often used when specifying objective/s for business ventures or projects and identifying the internal and external factors that are favourable and unfavourable to achieving these objective/s. Take this business SWOT and use it as a framework for a destination SWOT on Madrid, using the SWOT matrix. Then tell me the value of this exercise.
- How do you distinguish and evaulate between different types or categories of destinations?
Five Destination Groupings
The most common is the centered destination - the traditional holiday where tourists travel to a destination where they expect to spend the majority of their time, perhaps with occassional excursions to nearby attractions. Can you find two other centered destinations and write a paragraph on each eg. what they have to offer.
The base destination - from where the surrounding region can be explored. Can you find another two base destinations in the USA and write a paragraph explaining what they have to offer in and around them.
The touring destinations, which will be part of a linear itinerary. Or a little closer to home Great Ocean Road. Write a paragraph about one of the attractions described in the reading, or answer the who, what, where, why and how questions regarding the Twelve Apostles.
Find another two linear tours you would like to take somewhere in the world.
The transit destinations, these are the stopovers en route to the final destination. Travellers from New Zealand to the UK have quite a few stopoverchoices. Can you write a paragraph about another two transit destinations frequently used by airlines travelling from New Zealand to the UK.
Destinations can be categorized by geographical features
Urban TourismA growing interest in cultural activities eg. theatres, museums, and art galleries, as well as in historical and modern architecture, combined with the appeal of shopping as a leisure activity has seen Sydney prosper as a short break urban destination.
Does Sydney have this? To what degree? Does it have attractive enclaves; Darling Harbour, Circular Quay and The Rocks, parkland areas; Royal Botanic Gardens, Hyde Park, shopping precincts; Chinatown, George St, outerlying suburbs, (large department stores - David Jones, Myers). Now lets test your knowledge of Sydney - you and two friends are going there for two days. Plan an exciting event filled itinerary for you all.
Now find at least four major tourist attractions situated in or around Australia's other major cities eg. Perth, Adelaide, Melbourne, Brisbane
Low fares and no frills airlines services provide easy access for new markets (different travellers) to a growing number of cities or provincial towns. While larger cities have the ability to absorb large numbers of tourists, smaller, highly populated cities/towns such as Oxford and Cambridge, in England, or Sirmione on Lake Garda, in Italy, suffer from severe congestion in summer, which causes major tourism management problems for the local authorities. For example Sirmoine has ample parking facilities for cars and coaches on the outskirts of town , but to get to the heart of the town (some distance) they have to walk or use bus transfers. You can see from the video that the streets and access areas in Sirmoine are limited to smaller groups of people.
Urban renewal and destination regeneration are another way for towns or cities which were prosperous but have since gone into decline to again reinvent themselves. A good example is Glasgow - which was once the centre for heavy engineering - ship building, until the yards were closed and the city suffered severe decline. Since then it has had and continues to have, extensive renewal.
Now lets see how much you know already - complete this urban activity, choosing a destination of your choice (most likely a city).
Coastal and Resort Tourism
The stereotypical tourism environment - sand, sea and surf. Whether its sitting in a deckchair or lying on the beach, watching the sea or taking part in more physically active watersports - surfing, windsurfing, snorkelling/scubadiving this form of tourism remains popular.
From the faded glory of what was Britain's traditional resort in the 1960's - 70's, Clacton-on-Sea Clacton-on-Sea has reinvented itself as a retirement hotspot making way for the vastness of Australia'spristine coastline or island resorts such as Langkawior theSeychelles.
Former destinations are however attempting to recreate themselves; Provincetown, Cape Cod, United States of America, a long-time resort for artisits, which is now, in an effort to address seasonal fluctuation, transforming itself into a destination for 'intellectual tourism', offering educational courses, art courses. Provincetown Theatre Company runs a full-season programme for visitors.
An English equivalent Blackpoolhas recently been granted funds to help with this process. Take a look and complete the activity.
The countryside offers a different holiday experience from urban or coastal tourism. Although admired by artists for many centuries, the widespread appeal of country/rural areas is of relatively recent origin.
Congestion and pollution (19th century) made life unbearable in the big cities and escape to the country came first for those in the aristocratic circles, merchants and then the labouring classes.
Rural Tourism encompasses a huge range of activities, natural or manmade attractions, amenities and facilities, transportation, marketing and information systems (Sharpley & Sharpley, 1997). Rural tourism is very diverse and fragmented in terms of operational structures, activities, markets and operating environments (Roberts & Hall, 2001, citing Pearce, 1989). Benefits of rural tourism have been expressed as employment growth and broadening a regions economic base, repopulation, social improvement, and revitalization of local craft (Sharpley, 2000).[Alice Eruera, 2008 - A thesis submitted to Auckland University of Technology, in partial fulfillment of the degree of Masters of Business (Tourism) Rural Tourism Development in the Eastern Hokianga Area]
It is increasingly being used as a development strategy to improve the social and economic well being of rural areas. The outback of Australia is a harsh area where where workers are sometimes had to find so employers are looking to the backpacker market to fill their needs and for FIT travellers its a way to pay for your holiday.
Tourists visiting rural areas of Nicaragua support locals by helping with harvesting of their crops and in return treat you like one of the family. In the US agri-entertainment has become a way to utalise farming land that is no longer economically productive. Or in the UK rural tourism has been given a funding boost to support the industry.
In New Zealand rural tourism has a different focus. The Perriam's of Tarras in Central Otago (reading in courses folder)have taken "the vast semi-arid Bendigo Station" and created a diverse business and tourism empire.
Now complete the activity which encompasses all of this section on Rural Tourism.
Promoting the Destination
A destination can be anything from a nation to a region, a resort to a city, and can contain one or many attractions or hold annual or one off events. How is the image, perception, expectation of the destination promoted and formed in the eye of the tourist??
Tourism New Zealand is the National Tourism Organisation which markets New Zealand. It does this through the 100% Pure New Zealand campaign. New Zealand also has 29 Regional Tourism Organisations (RTO's) or Destination Marketing Organisation, DMO's as they are known overseas.
Branding defines a unique set of beliefs about a destination and the sort of holidays or breaks it offers - beliefs that are equally emotional and rational, make it stand out from the competition and make it feel just right for each of its many target audiences. Many factors will go into the creation of these beliefs. Getting it right requires clear strategic thinking - weighing up what you can offer against what your competitors are doing, what your potential visitors are looking for, and most importantly how to adapt to change. The Canadian Tourism Commissiontalks about a brand made for explorers. Take a look at there "social media" section (left hand side of the website) and watch a video on YouTube or become a fan on Facebook.
Howe Cavernswanted to reinvent themsevles as a year-round travel destination and enhance the user’s experience to attract new and repeat visitors. To do this it first had to rebrand the destination/attraction and produce a new media marketing campaign if annual visit numbers were to increase. So how did it do this? Its also interesting to compare New Zealand's eqivalents to the Howe Caverns, Waitomo Caves and Te Anau's glow worm caves.
Just as destination branding can contribute to the success of a destination it can also make it more susceptable to negative or damaging influences. “Any growth in the negative perception of New Zealand’s world brand needs to be carefully considered as it could potentially have significant financial implications for the tourism industry, and for the other industries and products that trade off New Zealand’s world image,” says TIA Chief Executive Tim Cossar.
What are the future destinations of the world? Why will tourists want to visit them? Will they have the ability to maintain their place on the tourism area life cycle?
According to our students these are the destinations of the future........
Montenegro - Wild Beauty
By Jess Miller
Montenegro is known as the pearl of the Mediterranean, unique in many ways it is situated in the south of the Adriatic Sea. This small Mediterranean country is rich with architectural and cultural heritage, diversity of landscapes and climates and has a well preserved natural environment.
Montenegro's tourism suffered greatly from Yugoslavia's tragic civil war in the 1990s. In recent years, along with the stabilisation of the area, tourism in Montenegro has begun to recover and is being re-discovered by tourists from around the globe. In 2007 the country received peak level of tourism which almost reached pre-war statistics therefore the Tourism Masterplan of Montenegro was started. This is a national development program for nature based sustainable tourism (especially hiking and biking) with new infrastructure and services. The biggest problem of Montenegrin tourism is inadequate infrastructure especially the road network and difficulties with water and electricity supply to the coastal area. For that reason, a main investment of the government is building new and reconstructing the current road infrastructure, also many hotels are being constructed or renovated to cope with the influx of tourists.
What kind of destination is it?
Montenegro is made up of four main regions that all offer different aspects of coastal and resort tourism, and culture/heritage tourism. The North and South Coast regions areas the most popular are for tourists and offer heritage and coastal/resort tourism as they feature the old town of Kotor, (listed with UNESCO world heritage sites), beautiful beaches and the seaside resort, Sveti Stefan. The Central and North regions have fewer tourist attractions but still possess a selection of cultural/heritage and natural tourism activities. Notable are the Ostrog Monastery (a famous pilgrimage site) and Cetinje, historical capital of Montenegro. The Northern Region is known for its mountains and ski fields, national parks and the Tara River Gorge – an adventure wonderland.
What products/services can the destination offer?
Montenegro has a vast range of transport services to get you around the country, such as train, car and bus being the most popular choice in form of transport. Be it day or night, Budva offers great chances to enjoy theater plays and performances, music concerts and other entertainment programs, while the small city turns wild at night with cafes, bars and nightclubs open till late in the morning. There is a vast range of places to eat in Budva and here you will find anything from pizza places, bakeries to seafood and Chinese restaurants. Across the harbour, at the very coast, there are some premium fresh seafood restaurants. You will find many different types of accommodation from B&B to luxury hotels equipped with top facilities, throughout all regions of Montenegro that aim to provide top quality service that will increase the tourism profile in Montenegro.
In Montenegro there are 2 International airports: Podgorica and Tivat. Airport Podgorica is the main one located 11km from the Podgorica city and is a hub for Montenegro's national airline carrier, Montenegro Airlines. Airport Tivat is the ideal choice of arrival to visit the Montenegro coast. It is only 20km away from the tourist area of Budva and less than 10 kilometers from Kotor.
What are its geographical features?
The contrast of high mountains just above blue Mediterranean sea, greenery lining the coast, multitude of lakes, mountains, national parks, untouched rustic areas and many small old towns along the coast make Montenegro the unique destination that it is today. The high mountains of Montenegro include some of the most rugged terrain in Europe and average more than 2,000m in elevation. Notable is Bobotov Peak in the Durmitor Mountains, which reaches 2,523m and is the country’s highest point. Montenegro’s lower areas have a Mediterranean climate, with dry summers and mild, rainy winters; however temperature varies greatly with elevation.
Which of the five destinational group/s does it come under?
Montenegro is a base destination with its four regions: North Coast Region, South Coast Region, Central Region and the Northern Region. The North Coast region is notable coastal region is of primary interest to tourists in Montenegro. The Montenegrin Adriatic coast is 295 km long, with 72 km of beaches, and with many well-preserved ancient old towns. The South Coast region of Montenegro is considered one of the great new "discoveries" among world tourists. The Central Region is the most densely populated area of Montenegro, it has fewer tourist attractions. Northern region is centre of Montenegrin mountain tourism with ski resorts, and is popular for its untouched nature.
Once you arrive in the Central Region at the main airport of Podgorica, you are able to visit different aspects of the country that are offered throughout the various regions.
Who would the target market be?
Independent travellers make up the majority of arrivals; Montenegro promotes itself as a unique holiday destination to target those travellers that are willing to seek opportunities they cannot experience anywhere else. Montenegro also has started to target package holiday travellers as they are necessary to fill the increasing capacities of Montenegro tourist resorts and take part in arising tourist activities.
This strategy is part of marketing the Tourism Master plan of Montenegro and once attractions, accommodation and the infrastructure of Montenegro are developed, tourists that are package holiday travellers will be able to get the ultimate experience without hassle.
Montenegro attracts a target market of people travelling from the region of mid-west and northern Europe including Germany, Scandinavia, France, Austria, northern Italy and the UK, and Central Europe with Russia high on demand. However the destination of Montenegro has started to market its profile in the US as Americans have been travelling in small numbers and this is expected to increase.
Montenegro targets the older generation that are looking to have a relaxing stress free holiday, therefore the majority of arrivals are 40+ years old. This market somewhat occurs naturally as they are generally more interested in different culture and the historical heritage in which Montenegro provides. In the future, Montenegro is expected to be targeting tourists amongst the ‘golden years’ who consider a unique experience and top quality products and services, priceless.
Does the destination have branding, a logo, website?
Montenegro has a website, brand and logo and these are all the result of a successful marketing campaign. Montenegro Travel can be found at travel index and has the brand ‘Wild Beauty’. This is very relevant to Montenegro as there is nowhere else that you can find, in such a small place, so much natural wealth, beauty, mild beaches, clear lakes, fast rivers and gorgeous mountains – like you can in the small country of Montenegro.
This website plays a very successful part in marketing Montenegro as it provides very good information that can inform the tourist and persuade them Montenegro is the ultimate holiday destination. It provides videos, photos, and information on what to see and do, booking service and travel stories – everything you expect to see from a successful tourist destination. It has wonderful photographs on the homepage that instantly attracted my attention however it could provide some animation to show more of the country right from the start.
This is the official Visit Montenegro video which forms part of a very successful marketing campaign and can be found at . This follows a red scarf (symbolising the country’s flag) throughout the areas of Montenegro and shows what the country has to offer as a destination. This is a great way to show all aspects of a region in such a short amount of time.
Lastly reflect on what you have found out
Montenegro will become a destination with all year round tourism, picturesque landscapes and protected biodiversity with a focus on sustainability and because of this I rate it 8/10 as a successful tourist destination. It plans to equally offer diversity and high quality hotels, resorts and other accommodation facilities that will meet all the demands and appeal to the target groups all year round. As for nature tourism, Montenegro will have managed to become the ‘market leader’ in the Mediterranean, with a positive impact on extending the season and protecting the environment it possess. I think that Montenegro will become oriented towards up-scale markets with strictly protected natural and cultural features guaranteeing the appeal of the country and the preservation of resources for future generations. Tourism will strengthen its standing as a generator of jobs and taxes, stimulating most other sectors of Montenegrin economy.
In January 2010, The New York Times ranked the Ulcinj South Coast region of Montenegro and the Hotel Mediteran of Ulcinj, as among the "Top 31 Places to Go in 2010" (at #24) as part of a ranking of tourism destinations. This backs up my opinion as it proves that tourism is starting to boom in 2010 which will further attract international attention, resulting in a successful tourist destination of the future.
By Helen Robertson
Dubai is already well on its way to becoming a worldwide tourist city with their recent opening of the Burj Khalifa this year (the tallest building in the world). Right now Dubai is a construction site, building a number of projects such as Dubai Land, Dubai Sports City, Dubai Waterfront and much more. Dubai, like Singapore is an international business hub linking the West to the Far East. Tourists will want to visit Dubai for many different reasons; shopping (at the Dubai shopping festival), playing sports (in the Dubai Sport City), a stopover, for business, or just for a holiday visiting the ‘city of the future’. Dubai is home to a lot of the World’s firsts, including: the Burj Al Arab (the only 7 star hotel in the world), Burj Khalifa (the tallest building in the world), designed man-made islands (the World, Palm islands and the Universe), Dubai Land (the world’s biggest theme park), the world’s biggest shopping mall (Dubai Mall), and the world’s tallest fountains (business district fountains) and more.
Will it have the ability to maintain its place on the tourist area lifecycle?
I believe that Dubai will be able to maintain its place on the lifecycle, although it is quite reliant on tourism, the property, finances and banking sectors have a big enough share in the economy, creating an equal balance. On the area lifecycle I believe that Dubai is situated on the consolidation part, because of the continuous increase of tourists to the destination and the service given to the tourists is provided by national and international companies. The placement of Dubai on the lifecycle can be debated, but I chose to place it at consolidation because the destination is still being built, although it is already thriving, when it is completed in 2020, Dubai will be like no other city in the world
What kind of destination is it?
A destination can be anything from a nation to a region, city to a resort, and can contain one or more attractions and hold annual or one off events. Dubai is a state, although it is made from many different cities such as Dubai Marina, Internet City, Media City, Sports City, Jumeirah City etc, who are located very close to one another (making Dubai look like a megacity), this makes Dubai a State destination.
What products/services can the destination offer?
Products/services are the experiences and services the tourist anticipates from the destination. Dubai has a number of products and service ranging from luxurious, adventure, unique, discovery and business experiences/activities and services. Some examples of the products/services Dubai has include; Wild Wadi Water Park (adventure), desert safari (discovery), indoor skiing/snow park (unique), Burj Al Arab (luxurious) and the city is an international business hub linking the West to the Far East, like Singapore (business).
What are the geographical features?
Dubai is located on the coast of United Arab Emirate with the Persian Gulf bordering the western coast of the country. Dubai is surrounded by other states, including Abu Dhabi, the capital city of the Emirates (south), Sharjah (northwest), Oman (southeast) and Ras Al Khaimah (north). Dubai covers an area of 4,114 km2 (square) and lies directly in the Arabian Desert, where the sand consists mostly of crushed shell and coral and is fine, clean and white, the further east you adventure the dunes grow larger, and are tinted red with iron oxide. Dubai doesn’t have any natural river or oases, however, it does have a natural inlet named Dubai Creek that runs northwest through the city which has been deepened so large vessels are able to pass through. Dubai is situated only 200 km from the nearest seismic fault line, the Zagros Fault, but it is unlikely to have any seismic impact on Dubai, and it is very unlikely that a tsunami would occur in the region because the Persian Gulf waters are not deep enough to trigger a tsunami.
Dubai is categorized by two geographical features which include Urban Tourism and Coastal Tourism. The giant skyscrapers, modern architecture, shopping centres, museums and theatres, business and other leisure tourism outlets make one of Dubai’s geographical features, Urban Tourism. Because Dubai is located on the Coast of the United Arab Emirates it is categorized as Coastal Tourism, where residents and tourists can relax on the warm sandy beach or take part in physically active water sports such as surfing, wind boarding or snorkelling.
Which of the five destinational group/s does it come under?
Out of the five destination groupings; centered, base, multicentre, touring and transit, Dubai is a centered destination. A centered destination is the traditional holiday where tourists visit the destination (Dubai) and spend a majority of their time, perhaps with the occasional excursions to nearby attractions. I placed Dubai as a centered destination because it is a huge city with a never-ending amount of activities and excursions, and when people visit Dubai most of them stay in the city, with the occasional excursion outside the city such as going on a desert safari, or even visiting the capital city Abu Dhabi, in the state next door.
What would the target market be?
Dubai’s target market covers a diverse range of tourists, from shoppers to business people, and sportsmen to celebrities. The reason why Dubai has such a diverse range of tourists is because it caters a wide range of products/services (as mentioned above). Dubai also has selected countries it targets, including, Europe, United States and Australia, as well as some developing markets like China and Latin America, and other smaller markets.
Dubai is the fastest growing city in the world, where you can find every nationality living and working together peacefully. This year Dubai’s population has increased to an extraordinary 2,262,000 people residing in the megacity, with many different ethnic groups including: Indian, Pakistani, Bangladeshi, Egyptian, Jordanian, Iranian, Filipino, Western and other, and only 17% of the residents in Dubai are UAE citizens.
Does the destination have a branding, logo and website?
Dubai has a brand, logo and various websites promoting this future destination. The Dubai Department of Tourism and Commerce (DTCM) launched the Dubai Heart logo in 2005. According to the DTCM the red colour of the Dubai Heart reflects courage and dynamism of leadership in the area, and the heart logo represents the healthy, vibrant, and strong character of Dubai. “Even when the whole body is asleep, the heart is at work diligently pumping and that is an expressive comment about Dubai”.
“Definitely Dubai” is the newest tourism brand to promote Dubai. Al Geziry, Director for Overseas Promotions and Inward Missions, said, “Definitely Dubai will provide marketing opportunities and tools for professionals who are coming to Dubai.”
Mr Geziry also mentioned that the brand “Definitely Dubai” is focused on Dubai residents, visitors and people wanting to do business there. Dubai has a number of website containing information about attractions, entertainment, Hotels (accommodation), lifestyle, restaurants, culture and heritage and much more, including information tourists would find helpful before visiting the destination. These websites include:Dubai Tourism and Dubai
On a scale of 1-10 on how successful Dubai will be as a future destination, I give it a 10. The future of Dubai is looking good. Dubai contains a great number of excellent attractions, including a lot of World firsts, as well as some interesting architecture. On the area lifecycle Dubai is placed at consolidation, because, although Dubai is already becoming a popular destination, when it finishes in 2020, it will become one of the top destinations in the World. Dubai is surrounded by a great desert with giant fiery red dunes, and is boarded by the beautiful Persian Gulf on the western side of the state as well as a natural inlet named Dubai Creek that is deep enough for vessels to pass through. Just because Dubai is in a desert it doesn’t stop it from having things like a snow park and other top of the line products/services. Because Dubai is a centered destination and it has such a diverse range of products/service it attracts a diverse range of tourists, from shoppers to sportsmen, and business people to celebrities.
Dubai is already a good tourist destination, but in the near future once they have completed their outstanding projects, Dubai will become a Great tourist destination, one that no other city can live up to. A place that has a little something for everyone, Dubai will become the ‘City of the Future”.