Purpose of this day is to encourage awareness among the international community of the importance of tourism and its social, cultural, political and economic value. This day is a celebration of tourism´s capacity, to bring the people of the world closer together and break down barriers between cultures. It is a chance to raise awareness of how tourism can foster tolerance, respect and mutual understanding. It is also an opportunity to explore how tourism can contribute to the world´s peace.
Every year UNWTO invites all people without exception to take part in the World Tourism Day celebrations in their countries or holiday destination. By this event the United Nations tries to highlight its Millennium Development Goal (MDGs) which are: To End Poverty and Hunger, Universal Education, Gender Equality, Child Health, Maternal Health, Combat HIV/AIDS, Environmental Sustainability and Global Partnership. It also tries to highlight the contribution the tourism sector can make in reaching these goals.
Each time World Tourism Day is celebrated by events around the themes chosen by the UNWTO General Assembly, on the recommendation of the UNWTO Executive Council.
This year’s theme is a celebration of role of tourism in linking cultures of the world through travel.
Millions of people are travelling the world each year, they have been to so many places, and they have been so exposed to other cultures like never before. In order to build blocks for a more peaceful world, it is important to foster tolerance, respect and mutual understanding between individuals and communities. Tourism can help to maintain spiritual and cultural respect among people, while creating economic opportunities to benefit disadvantaged populations.
History of this day
In Spain, September 1979 UNWTO General Assembly decided to establish World Tourism Day, beginning in 1980. This day was selected to coincide with an important milestone in world tourism. It was the anniversary of adoption of the UNWTO Statues on 27 September 1970.
What is UNWTO?
The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) is a United Nations agency and the leading international organization in the field of tourism. Organization´s headquarter is based in Madrid-Spain, and it serves as a global forum for tourism policy issues and a practical source of tourism know-how. UNWTO has a central and decisive role in promoting the development of responsible, sustainable and universally accessible tourism, where it pays a particular attention to the interest of developing countries. It also compiles the World Tourism rankings. The World Tourism Organization is a significant global body, concerned with the collection and collation of statistical information on international tourism. This organization represents public sector tourism bodies, from most countries in the world and the publication of its data makes possible comparisons of the flow and growth of tourism on a global scale. The official languages of UNWTO are Arabic, English, French, Russian and Spanish.
UNWTO has memberships in 154 countries, 7 territories and over 00 Affiliate Members that represent private sector, educational institutions, tourism associations and local tourism authorities.
UNWTO encourages the implementation of its The Global Code of Ethics for Tourism. It is a frame of reference for the responsible and sustainable development of World tourism.