This journey-style thesis is a sense-making attempt to the cultural tourism practice. Conceptualizing contemporary travel as a rite of passage, a modern-day pilgrimage, this paper strives to find out what transformational effects are available to an individual engaging in tourism practice and how it can benefit the society at large. When traditions, norms and morals lost in postmodernity create existential angst, the tourism as a “get away from it all” sheds a light on the values which went amiss and emphasizes the need for a more humanistic, value-based approach on a global level. Utilizing previous empirical research on transformational tourism and transformational psychology the conceptual framework of 3 levels of transformation through othering is created, leading to the conclusion that for the achievements of wholeness, peace and existential authenticity the loss of ego is required. By coalescing the fragmented theories in the fields of tourism, cultural economics and sociology this work contributes to the body of knowledge in these domains. The metaphorical nature of this thesis allows for the application of the findings beyond tourism and outside the mentioned areas.

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Arjo Klamer
Cultural Economics and Entrepreneurship , Master Arts, Culture & Society
Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication

Alina Pavlova. (2017, June 21). All roads lead to.. Where? - The Transformational Power of Tourism. Master Arts, Culture & Society. Retrieved from