Religion, spirituality, and tourism

Emerging and future directions

Authored by: Dallen J. Timothy , Daniel H. Olsen

The Routledge Handbook of Religious and Spiritual Tourism

Print publication date:  July  2021
Online publication date:  July  2021

Print ISBN: 9780367191955
eBook ISBN: 9780429201011
Adobe ISBN:


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This handbook is about faith, religion, spirituality, and the sacred and the secular and how these intersect with the moderating variable of tourism. Through the current academic literature, much is known regarding people’s motivations for undertaking pilgrimages and seeking spiritual experiences through travel. These include religious obligations, penance and forgiveness, promotion of faith and testimony, increasing proximity to deity, socializing with family and other likeminded devotees, and seeking an existential understanding of self. Indeed, much research has been done on the marketing and management of sacrosanct places and the economic, social, and environmental costs and benefits of mega and small-scale religious events and religious festivals, as well as religious and spiritual tourism more generally. Much of this knowledge has been eruditely reviewed in this book, but we have also tried to go beyond normative familiarity to identify and address lesser-known elements of religious tourism and spiritual travel.

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