COUNTER-TOURISM: An important statement
If you’ve ever been a tourist, then Counter-Tourism is an invitation to you to completely transform your experience of the heritage-tourism industry and its many sites. Counter-Tourism provides a set of powerful lenses, bending a whole world of conventional tourism into a spiral of new perspectives and experiences.HOW? (The Strategy)
Together, ordinary people can change the world of heritage-tourism by innovative consuming, intervention and even ‘infiltration’ that will transform the way that the heritage industry and its sites are visited, looked at, experienced, conserved, managed and changed.Counter-Tourism can only take off and come alive if you use the tactics (set out in the Pocketbook and the Handbook) and encourage others to do so, devising new ones along the way.
Important statement continues…
Because the heritage business has a dark side! Beneath the simple sounding stories in the Visitor Guide and behind the locked gates marked PRIVATE, there lies a multitude of inconvenient stories, hilarities, wonders, extremes and outrages. When Counter-Tourism opens the doors, tourism becomes a funny, subversive and adventurous experience – not a deferential procession through the unrevealing homes and castles of Heritage plc. Counter-Tourism upsets the sanitising efforts of the heritage industry. It is also a personal and social journey of mini-pilgrimages, challenges and pleasures.WHERE (is all this going)?
To a new way of understanding and making history – through pleasure and exploration – a new terrain where history, heritage, nation and identity are no longer carefully policed stories, but are landscapes to be explored, crime scenes to be examined, sensual playgrounds in which to learn new tricks.
HOLD ON – IS THERE AN AGENDA HERE?
Yes – this is an approach to place/space that celebrates the multiplicities of meaning in every heritage site and upsets the industry’s attempts at meaning-control and homogenisation – call it “mythogeography”. It’s what gives counter-tourism its emphasis on the sites of heritage, on the places themselves.
Counter-tourism is down to you. Use the tips, tactics and hints in the books to get started. Now, let’s begin…
- By intensifying and sharpening your perceptions – see what’s behind the scenes, outside the site, just offstage.
- By blowing apart the homogenous heritage story to uncover, the multiplicity of stories.
- By changing the kind of tourist you are.
- By making tiny or dramatic interventions, and then moving on, if it’s your bag, to ‘infiltrating’ the industry itself.
Find out how to do these things:
Get a copy of Counter-Tourism: The Handbook or Counter-Tourism: A Pocketbook