Urban Tourism Industry And Its Impacts Tourism Essay

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Time has changed now, no one want be static people like to travel abroad to explore the world. It is in human nature to find more and more place to entertain him. The main reason behind this all revolution is; the life is becoming materialistic day by day. This trend is helping the many countries to grow their economic condition as well. Like in any country have historic places; now they are making these places more attractive to get more people visit those monuments. People visit different areas according to their on liking. Every city and country has various types of attraction for the visitors. As we can say people go to Egypt to see mummies. If we talk about London, London has lots historic and cultural places like museum, art galleries, monuments and forts.

Keeping in accounts all these points tourism has become a growing industry now and every country is trying to promote its tourism industry. In this assignment we would try to analyse the definition of urban tourism and its impact. How the tourism industry is growing in the urban area. We selected the Edinburgh the city of Scotland. We would try to elaborate the history of tourism industry of Edinburgh. How they are planning to make it more attractive for future. We also tried to cover all the attraction of Edinburgh and all statistics regarding industry. Our main focus on the problem of tourism in Edinburgh. In this assignment, we shall try to find out problems and will give the conclusions and recommendations.

2. Urban Tourism:-

The concept of urban tourism is very broad and it consists of all kinds of entertainment activities that are held in cities. “The improvement of urban environment and the perfection of all kinds of services and facilities are all great attractions to tourists” It consists of good and suitable transport links, well-blooming market, better trade and good atmosphere for shopping, latest and developed information and technology, great service and leisure, modern urban land rich urban culture. Therefore a lot of people decide different types of cities as a destination to spend their holidays and the urban tourism in those cities are well-known. (Zou and Tian, 2002)

According to Colantonio and Potter (2006) the tourism that is held in urban area of the city is known as urban tourism. Urban tourism consists of different types of the activities. Different people visit urban cities for different purposes. They like to visit historical buildings, tourist attractions, landscapes, art galleries, special events, to see culture and heritage and for leisure purposes. Urban city also offers a lot of activities to increase tourism and attract the people. All those things are the characteristics of urban tourist. The image of the city is very important for all types of visitor, they (visitors) have a lot of expectations like the behaviour and attitude of the community. If it is positive, it attracts the visitors again and again. In this way, the tourism growth increases of that city.

The cities change in public culture, architecture and design, education, urban planning, parks and leisure and public party which resulted from dramatic redevelopment of the city’s central business and historic district. Urban tourism increasingly generates images of heritage and identify that are consumed as much by residents as by visitors. The cities where the tourism infrastructure and marketing are largely build up. (Chambers, 1997)

2.1 Impacts of Urban Tourism:-

According to Law (2002) now a day, the urban tourism is growing rapidly in every country of the world. It is providing a lot of advantages to local people in many different ways. The tourism growth in urban areas has caused economic, socio cultural and environmental. They have both positive and negative impacts.

According to Mak (2004) urban tourism has a wide range of economic impacts in urban areas. The community plays an important role to create more and more tourism in their city and in this their economies go up and they are the people who get benefits. The tourism and community depends on each other. When the growth of tourism increases, the more people who come to visit the city, they spend their money in different ways like accommodation, food, transportation, shopping etc.

The positive impacts of urban tourism help to increase in local economy of the city and also increase the living standard of the people. The numbers of job created in local area in different sectors e.g. hotels, travel agencies, restaurant etc. It also helps to improve infrastructure of transportation and created much business opportunity in that area. There are some negative impacts of economy is in urban cities as well. In such type of city, it is very difficult to live because the living cost is too much because the rate of land and houses are very high. Sometime it causes the unemployment because of season tourism in urban city. People do not get minimum wages because of a lot of manpower is available. (Theobald, 2004)

According to Holden (2008) when we talk of the environment, we talk of the surroundings such as soil, water, air, vegetation, wildlife and other scare resources. Everyday we are made aware of the environmental issues in the newspapers, on television or by observing our own surroundings. Pollution of the land, air, rivers and seas are just come of the issues that we are faced with. Tourism and environment are closely linked. When tourist visit urban area, they come to experience the environment and its natural beauty such as the sea, beaches, ancient sights, the wild life and the flora and fauna (vegetation). It makes sense to protect it. The positive impacts of urban tourism are as follows:

  • All the natural environments attract the visitors to come in urban cities.
  • The local authority tries to improve more and more natural resources in the city and improves the look of city as well.
  • The negative impacts of environment on urban cities are given below:
  • Every type of pollution increases in urban cities e.g. air pollution, noise distortion and water pollution.
  • Natural lands are converted into the commercial areas; it is difficult to find landscapes and natural beauty.
  • Shortfall of natural resources like water.

According to Smith (2003) urban tourism has also impact socially. When a lot of visitors come to visit a particular area they leave social impacts on the region. The relation between visitors and residents get closer and when you go close to some one, you obviously influence to person which can be both positive and negative nature. The growth of tourism in urban city, attract but force as well to community to accept their culture and standard. The positive impacts of social and culture are as follows:

It helps to improve living standard of people. The urban city provides a lot of attractions and well managed infrastructure of tourism. When tourists come to visit urban city they belong to different ethnicity and urban tourism provides a lot of resident opportunities e.g. get together with good and friendly people, to explore the knowledge about their countries or cities. The tourists encourage their historical sights and culture.

Due to urban tourism, the local community learn a lot of positive things like the knowledge about world, different languages. Its helps people to understand different civilisation.

The negative impacts of social and culture:

  • In some countries drinking is not allowed but in tourism case people do drinking and it effect badly.
  • It also indulges under age people in drinking.
  • It disturbs the family structure of the place.
  • Many negative changes take place in values and customs.
  • Urban tourism also increases in crimes, usages of drugs and prostitution.

3. Edinburgh:-

Edinburgh is Scotland’s capital and most successful tourist destination. The Edinburgh is divided into Old Town and New Town. There are a lot of tourist’s attractions, rich museum collections, arts galleries. Edinburgh is the home to three national art collections and a number of galleries (Wordsworth, 2002).

Edinburgh City (Source: www. travel.webshots.com)

According to Shelby,(2007)Edinburgh is a beautiful and historical city of Scotland. Most of the traveller says that if you want to visit two cities of the Great Britain, one is London and second is Edinburgh. The city is known as for festivals. There is a lot festivals that held in the Edinburgh like films, books, comedy, drama, music, dance etc.

Famous Edinburgh residents include Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling, who has become one of the best-selling writers in history and wrote her first book in one of the city’s coffee shop. (Shelby, 2007) According to Parlett, Fletcher and Cooper (1995) “Edinburgh is going through a process of change and centre of attention. This city plays a vital role in refocusing of tourism in Scotland. The main thing in Edinburgh is its attractions and heritage”

3.1 Attractions of Edinburgh:-

The main purpose of destination is to provide leisure and facilities to the visitors. A tourist destination needs to have variety of attractions, events and entertainment that are value for money and keep an eye on the requirements of the visitors. (Blackman and Stewart. 2005)

Attractions have the ability to draw people to them and they are often the main motivation for travel. For example, if you think to about travelling to a destination, what is that makes it worth visiting? The beach? The shopping? All these examples of tourist attraction.

There are many sightseeing attraction in Edinburgh that are given below;

1) Edinburgh Castle 2) National Gallery of Scotland

3) Royal Museum of Scotland 4) Edinburgh Zoo

5) National Gallery Complex 6) St. Giles Cathedral

7) Royal Botanic Garden 8) National War Museum

9) Scottish Parliament Visitor Centre 10) Our Dynamic Earth Calton Hill

11) Prince Street Garden 12) Georgian House

13) Museum of Childhood

3.1.1 Edinburghh Castle:-

Edinburgh Castle Source: (www.michaelp.org, 2003)

Edinburgh castle is situated in the centre of the city. Edinburgh castle is one of the most famous historic and most visited attractions. Ever year million of people come to see this historical attraction. If you go to Scotland and you do not visit this castle, it means that your trip is not complete. There are a lot of events held in this castle like fireworks, World Heritage Day and many more. (Wordsworth, 2002)

3.1.2 National Gallery of Scotland:-

National Gallery of Scotland (Source: www.edinphoto.org.uk)

This gallery is designed by William Playfair in 1850-1857. The gallery has a good collection of paintings, prints, drawing, photographs and books of history. The gallery displayed chronological are complemented by appropriate period furniture and sculpture. Everyday most of the visitors come here to visit this gallery. (Dailey, 2005)

3.1.3 Royal Museum of Scotland:-

Royal Museum of Scotland (Source: www.nms.ac.uk)

The royal museum of Scotland is one of the most visited attractions. This museum displays of arts and science in the grand victorian cast iron building. Exhibits include natural history, archaeology, costumes and decorative art from all around the world. There are some new galleries that provides the vast collection of Scotland and it people. (Blackman and Stewart. 2005)

3.1.4 Edinburgh Zoo:-

Edinburghh Zoo (Source: www. travel.webshots.com)

It was built by “Royal Zoological Society of Scotland in 1913”. Edinburgh Zoo is one of the most visited places in Edinburgh. There are lots of things to see inside the zoo like birds, mammals, reptiles and many more. The zoo has different types of animals that have come from different parts of the world. It attracts all types of age group. (Shelby, 2007)

3.2 Tourism Statistics of Edinburgh:-

Edinburgh is the 2nd most visited destination in the U.K. every year a lots of domestic and international visitors come to visit Scotland and of course their first priority is to visit Edinburgh.

Approximately 45% international tourists visit to Edinburgh if the come to Scotland.

Many people visit Edinburgh because of its history and nearly 4 million people visit every year. The main reason behind this huge number of visitors the different type of festivals.

Edinburgh is the second city in UK and fifth in Europe to generate revenue per room.

Rooms to let in hotels are very high in UK is likely 76%.

The tourism industry has a big contribution in the employment, the industry providing job approximately 31,000 people.

(Source: www.edinburghguide.com. 15 April 2009)

3.4 The Edinburgh Festivals:-

The Edinburgh festivals are well known in all over the world. “It was started in 1947”. There are a lot of festivals that held whole year. Million of people come to attend those festivals from all part of the world. (Whyte, 1998)

According to Dailey (2005) the first three weeks of august is very important for international festivals. This month is filled with performers and entertainer that come from different areas of the world to perform and entertain the visitors in Edinburgh. Those festivals offer “exhibitions, music, theatre and dance” the famous musicians, artists, actors, singers, dancers and comedians come to Edinburgh to perform.

Some of the most festivals are given below;

The Festival Fringe

Edinburgh Military Tattoo




3.4.1 The Festival Fringe:-

Fringe festival is the world largest art festival. This festival held in August and presents dance, theatre and music shows that are preformed by good performers. The Fringe festival is a great gathering of artists, musicians, actors and comedians.

3.4.2 Edinburgh Military Tattoo:-

Edinburgh Military Tattoo held in the “castle Esplanade” every year in August. It offers the music of the massed pipes and drums. Near about 0.2 millions people come to watch this festival.

3.4.3 Edinburgh’s Hogmanay:-

Edinburgh’s second great festival is Hogmanay. The festival takes place Dec-Jan. Near about 0.5 million people attend this festival. It is the Scottish New Year celebration with a spectacular Fire Procession and fireworks, a carnival and open-air concerts running for several days.

4. Problems of Edinburgh:-

There is no country or city in world that has not any problem. Those problems are directly affected to economy. The best way to sort out those problems and improve as much as we can. Edinburgh is a nice place to visit. It is a developed tourist’s destination Although Edinburgh has not too many problems but still some problems exist that are given below;

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4.1 Edinburgh and Crime:-

Security is very important for the growth of tourism. The regions where the tourism is very high, there would be also a negative aspect that it will also increase the criminality from. Prostitution, pick-pocketing, drugs and petty crime are very common problems in major tourist destination. Crime has always been a threat to travellers because people are vulnerable when they are away from their home. They may be carrying a lot of money and expensive things. They do not know too much about the area and surroundings. Tourist have always made easy picking for thieves, the thieves, know that when they will go back home, they will reclaim the theft on their insurance. (Blackman and Stewart, 2005)

UK has many places to visit and Edinburgh is one of them. It seems very safe and quiet place for visitors actually, it is not that safe because it has lots of clubs and pubs in that area. It is safe to walk in this area but do not go in alley street. If you want to go there must be some people to around you. Ever tourist place has same negative factor with its all positive factors like Edinburgh. It is very clear tourism is a growing industry in Edinburgh, according to the statistics of Edinburgh tourism authority. But with the passage of time like other tourist place some fatal diseases are also coming to see. It is not only Edinburgh almost every tourist place. Like particularly. If we talk about Edinburgh people are being addicted to use of drugs. Due to open environment many other diseases like HIV also has been reported. Not only HIV been reported it is also going into dangerous figures. Moreover, the usage of cocaine and heroine has been come into records. There are well stable bodies who are managing all these activities. It is not only terrible for the people but also a challenge for the police as well to control all this. Source: (www.news.scotsman.com, 13 April 2010)

According to Hanna (10 March 2010) recently, near about 60 people arrested which were involved in suspicious activities and the concerned bodies seized the assets of £400.000 of those criminals. They had some drug and weapon too.

The new town of Edinburgh is considered the high criminal area. This town is classified as the second in terms of crime in Scotland. It is situated behind the Amberdeen Union street. There are a lot of bars and nightclubs are increasing the numbers of crimes in this area. Due to high crime rate, 5274 offences have recorded in this area.

Source: (www.edinburghhnews.scotsman.com, 14 September 2009)

4.2 Transport Problems in Edinburgh:-

Transport plays very vital role in tourism industry. The good facilities of transport help to maximize the industry’s potential. The transport links is very important in success of tourism product. The international visitors depend on the transport to get in the cities and attractions because they do not know about the destination too much. So, the first priority of the destination management is to provide good transport facilities and services. In this way they can explore more and more about destination. Most visitors have not too much time to spend in destination; they want to get in destination as quickly as possible. (Blackman, Smith, Rowe and Stewart, 2005)

Infrastructure and transportation plays an important role in tourism of a particular area. Edinburgh is the second most visited city in United Kingdom. Every day a lot of people come to visit this city. The traffic growth is increasing day by day and it is creating more problems in Edinburgh. The economic growth of Edinburgh is increasing very rapidly from last a few years. This economic improvement has made a lot of positive and negative changes. The positive changes are, it created thousands of jobs, which are why lots of people travel to Edinburgh on a daily basis. They travel in cars and buses. The main roads of Edinburgh are very busy. Most of the travellers from different cities come to Edinburgh from different source of travelling like trains, cars, buses and aeroplanes. Most of them come in cars and buses which is causing congestion on the roads. That is why the congestion on the road has been increased and nearly it increased up to 60%.

Source: (www.scottish.parliament.uk, 21 August 2002)

The Scottish Govt took a step to resolve the diversion tram issues. This was a good step to handle all the traffic issues. But, there are some issues between the Scottish Govt. and the construction firm. The work has been suspended till the problem is resolved. All the utilities works mostly completed but the laying of tram are suspended.

Source: (www.transportxtra.com, 10 March 2010)

4.3 Tourist’s Problems in August:-

There is a lot of tourist’s attraction in Edinburgh. Tourists come to visit whole year. There is no particular time period for tourists. There are lots social and cultural festivals in the august of every year. These are very big festival and lots people come to attend these festivals form the whole world because of this massive attendance of people the tourism board of Edinburgh is unable to control the number of people that is why they close most of the tourist points and open them in Sundays. (Dailey, 2005)

The second main problem is many people visit Edinburgh in August and they book the hotel and travel tickets. In the result the price of hotel rooms and tickets automatically goes up. Not only prices goes up but also unable to book room and travel ticket. The prices of other tangible item goes up as well. (Wordsworth, 2002)

5. Conclusions and Recommendations:-

In conclusion and recommendations we need would focus to resolve the problem which the destination facing in the tourism industry. There are lots problem which need special attention to rectify for the enhancement of tourism. Although, tourism is growing in Edinburgh but the problems are also. The main problem is transport. The numbers of tourist are increasing day bye day but the transportation facilities are not enough to meet all the requirements. Infrastructure need to improve to provide better transport facilities. They can handle the traffic problem to apply the congestion charges on busy area. They should encourage visitors and local people to use public transport.

The second main issue is crime, although, the crime is not high enough but when more tourist visit Edinburgh they have different nature and the nature can be any type. People are being addict of drugs. Tourists come to these places for maximum entertainment. When they come to these places they use alcoholic drinks and drugs. With all these issues the prostitution is also increasing and is becoming common. The pubs and night clubs open till late night and they cause problem for local residents. In August they arrange some international festival in Edinburgh and these event gives help to criminals to promote their activities.

Edinburgh attracts the people to visit Scottish history. There are lots forts and monuments which represent the Scottish history. Every age group visit the Edinburgh like 10 to 70. There are many other attraction points are as well should be identified to visitors like Edinburgh castle and National gallery of Scotland. A big population of the world is consisting of senior people and they should do some thing to attract them as well.

6. Bibliography:-

Whyte, D. (1998) Landmark visitors guide (Scotland), Landmark Publishing Ltd., Derbyshire

Martine, R. (2008) Edinburgh, Apa Publication, Singapore

Reid, D. (2002) The rough guide to Edinburgh, 3rd edition, Rough Guides Ltd., London

Yeoman. I., Robertson, M., Ali, J. and Durmmond, S. (2003) Festivals and events management: an international arts and culture perspective, A Butterworth-Heinemann, Oxford

Maclellan, R. and Smith, R. (1998) Tourism in Scotland, Thomson Learning, London

Stevenson, R., L. (2009) Edinburgh, Bibliolife LLC, U.K.

Howie, F. (2003) Managing the tourist destination, Thomson Learning, London

Vanhove, N. (2004) Economics of tourism destination, Butterworth-Heinemann, Oxford


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