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History of Travel and Tourism

Travel is as old as mankind on the earth. The man at the beginning of his existence roamed about the surface of the earth in the search of food, shelter, securities, and better habitat. However, in course of time, such movements were transformed into wanderlust.

About five thousand year ago, changes in climate, dwindling food and shelter conditions hostile invaders made the people leave their homes to seek refuge elsewhere like the Aryans left their homes in Central Asia due to climate changes. Perhaps, this leads to the development of commerce, trade, and industry.

During Hindu and Chinese civilization a movement of religion, education and culture began. Christian missionaries, Buddhist monks and other traveled far and wide carrying religious messages and returned with fantastic images and opinions about alien people.

For centuries movement of people continued to grow due to the efficiency of transport and the assistance and safety which the people could travel. By the end of the 15th century, Italy had become the intellectual and cultural center of Europe. It represented the classical heritage both for the intelligentsia and the aristocracy.

During the 16th Century, travel come to be considered as an essential part of the education of every young Englishman. Travel thus became a mean of self – development, and education in its broadest sense. The educational travel was known as ‘Grand Tour‘.

The industrial revolution brought about significant changes in the pattern and structure of British society. Thus, the economy of Britain was greatly responsible for the beginning of modern tourism. It also created a large and prosperous middle class and because of great improvement in transportation systems in latter half of the 18th century and the first quarter of the 19th century, increasing number of people began to travel for pleasure.

Travel was originally inspired by the need for surviving (food, shelter, and security), the desire to expand trade and quest to conquer. As transportation system improved the curiosity for transforming the vast and virgin world into a close neighborhood created a new industry i.e. Travel and Tourism.

However, the developments of rails, roads, steamships, automobiles, and airplanes helped to spread technology across the globe. Earlier travel was a privilege only for wealthy people but with the industrial revolution, the scenario altogether changed. Transportation, as well as accommodation, became affordable to middle and working class citizens.

Essentially, with the development of jet travel, communication, new technology, tourism, and travel became the world’s largest and fastest growing industry.

Travel and tourism, recently has emerged as a dominant economic force on the global scene accounting for more than 12% of total world trade and growing at the rate of 8 percent annuals.

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