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The heritage tourist: an understanding of the visitor experience at heritage attractions

Kempiak, Joanna, Hollywood, Lynsey, Bolan, Peter and McMahon-Beattie, Una (2017) The heritage tourist: an understanding of the visitor experience at heritage attractions. International Journal of Heritage Studies, 23 (4). pp. 375-392. [Journal article]

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URL: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/13527258.2016.1277776?scroll=top&needAccess=true

DOI: 10.1080/13527258.2016.1277776


This study seeks to explore the visitor experience at heritage sites pre, during and post visit. A conceptual model depicting the heritage visitor experience was proposed. A self-administered survey (n = 195) was completed by visitors at six heritage sites across Northern Ireland. Visitor characteristics and pre-experience were analysed and results showed that heritage visitors are primarily motivated by recreation and base their visitation decision on advice from friends and family. Results from the exploratory factor analysis showed that audio and visual communication, atmospherics, on-site engagement, information and heritage preservation were the most influential factors during a visit. Post-experience results indicate that 54% of the sample was satisfied with their visit and 85% would revisit the heritage site. The final model suggests a range of factors which positively contribute to the visitor experience at heritage sites though this requires further testing.

Item Type:Journal article
Keywords:Heritage tourism, visitor experience, tourist motivation, decision-making, satisfaction
Faculties and Schools:Ulster Business School > Department of Hospitality and Tourism Management
Ulster Business School
Research Institutes and Groups:Business and Management Research Institute
ID Code:37513
Deposited By: Dr Lynsey Hollywood
Deposited On:15 May 2017 14:18
Last Modified:17 Oct 2017 16:29

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