Most destinations have some major attractions and a wide range of other attractions. For example, in London there is Buckingham Palace, Big Ben, The London Eye and Trafalgar Square, but there are hundreds of other places to visit as well. Some attractions will be free, others will be paid for. Some attractions are natural, some are purpose-built and some have become attractions over time.
Major attractions such as theme parks cost millions of pounds to build and will only be built where the company concerned is sure that the attraction will be profitable.
Leisure tourists – if the tourist is visiting the destination for the first time they will want to visit the most important attractions and probably others. These tourists might want to visit a range of attractions.
Business tourists – generally are not travelling to visit attractions, but they may have time to visit major attractions they have not been to before.
Different ages – younger tourists in their late teens onwards generally enjoy theme parks but will visit other attractions as well. Families will want to visit attractions which cater for children’s needs, whether they are toddlers or older children. Couples are perhaps more likely to visit cultural attractions and natural attractions. Older tourists will also be more interested in natural and cultural attractions.
Different cultures – will visit the ‘must do’ attractions in a destination, in other words, the most famous and the more cultural attractions.
Tourist types - table placeholder
It is not possible to list every type of attraction and put it in a category, but the table below should give a guide.
Products and services
- Nearly all attractions are able to develop their visitor services such as café/ restaurant facilities, souvenir shop and toilets.
- An attraction could also improve its access and parking facilities.
- Access for customers which require additional assistance could also be improved.
- Many attractions can develop better information and guides about what the visitor will see and should look for. This could be information boards, a hearing loop or an app providing information.
- Some attractions could provide a ‘hands on’ experience of an educational workshop.
- Attractions such as theme parks and similar charging attractions have to continually invest in new products, i.e. rides which will make customers want to return.
- Some attractions, e.g. museums can have special events and exhibitions which will attract tourists.
- An attraction could be used as a setting for a film or TV series.
- Most attractions now have websites to promote their products and services.
- Tickets for many attractions can be pre-booked online, often saving money.
- Many attractions are members of their local tourist board and are promoted through websites, ‘days out’ etc.
- Attractions will promote new facilities and products as they are developed.
- Those attractions which are visited on organised tours will work with tour operators.
- Some attractions will work with tour guides.
- Natural attractions might well work with the organisations which manage National Parks and other areas.
- Many attractions will work in some way with tourist boards and local authorities on a range of issues.
- Some attractions will work with parent companies (e.g. Merlin) when planning new products.
- Natural attractions will work with voluntary and conservation groups to ensure that the environment is not damaged.
- Attractions such as stately homes will work with conservation groups to protect the buildings and their contents.
- Many major purpose-built attractions are in the private sector and any development will be from profits or bank loans.
- Attractions such as museums and galleries are managed by either central or local government and are managed through a grant.
- Some stately homes have been bought by organisations such as the National Trust, which relies on membership fees and donations.
- The management of some natural attractions is funded by the National Parks etc. in which they are located.
Make some notes about how attractions in your chosen destination can increase the appeal of the destination to different types of tourist.