World Tourism Day

World Tourism Day

World Tourism Day is celebrated on 27th September each year. It is observed to raise people’s awareness of the importance of the global tourism industry and its contribution to the economic growth of several countries. Another significant reason why we celebrate tourism day is to commemorate the anniversary of the passing of United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) statutes, which happened in 1970.

Countries around the world, large and small, rely in some way or the other on travel and tourism for economic survival. Celebrating World Tourism Day is a way to acknowledge this industry and emphasize its cultural, social, and political values.

World Tourism Day – History

The history of World Tourism Day begins on 27th September 1970, when the legislation of the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) was adopted. This was considered a special milestone in the global tourism industry, and to celebrate it, the first ever tourism day was celebrated in 1980.

In 1997, the UNWTO General Assembly initiated designating a host country for celebrating World Tourism Day every year. This day is enthusiastically celebrated under a different theme each year. According to UNWTO, 27th September is a suitable date for celebrating this day because of the following reasons:

  • It marks the end of the peak of the Northern Hemisphere tourism season
  • It also marks the beginning of the Southern Hemisphere tourism season.

Significance of World Tourism Day

There are many reasons why World Tourism Day is considered significant. It is a day that commemorates the contribution of the tourism industry to GDP in many countries. It is also a day to spread the word about the industry’s challenges and to ideate solutions for them. Here are some of the significant reasons why we celebrate tourism day:

  • .The global contribution of the tourism industry to the GDP was reported to be $5.8 U.S. dollars in 2021.
  • The United Nations recognizes the tourism sector’s economic, cultural, and social relevance.
  • 27th September marks the anniversary day of the adoption of UNWTO statutes.
  • Tourism is a continuously growing and developing industry that contributes heavily to the GDP of several countries.
  • It is now the main source of income for developing countries.
  • The tourism industry faced the most severe effects of the pandemic and multiple lockdowns, resulting in great social and economic implications.
  • World Tourism Day provides the right opportunity to discuss ideas about revitalizing the global tourism industry.

World Tourism Day Theme

Each year, the UNWTO sets a different World Tourism Day theme to cover the different issues and aspects of the tourism industry. Organizations and individuals celebrating the day pick up the theme and spread awareness about it in their own way. Check out some of the previous year’s themes:

  • The theme for 2023 Tourism Day is “Tourism and green investment”.
  • The theme for 2022 world tourism day is “Rethinking Tourism”.
  • World Tourism Day theme 2021 was “Tourism for Inclusive Growth.” This day focused on tourism for comprehensive growth.
  • World Tourism Day theme 2020 was “Tourism and Rural Development.” This day focused on the ability to drive economic development and provide opportunities to rural communities.
  • The theme for World Tourism Day in 2019 was “Tourism and Jobs: a better future for all.” It focused on creating more and better jobs, especially for young people and women.
  • The theme for World Tourism Day 2018 was “Tourism and Cultural Protection,” and 2017 was “Sustainable Tourism – Tools for Development.”

World Tourism Day 2023

The World Tourism Day 2023 host country is Saudi Arabia. The official event will be conducted in Riyadh, a province of Saudi Arabia, to raise awareness about the evolving role of the global tourism industry. The theme for the event will be “Tourism and green investment”. Find more information about this year’s Tourism Day below:

World Tourism Day 2023 Host Country Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
Event Date 27th September 2023

World Tourism Day in India

The celebration of World Tourism Day took place in Delhi in 2019. During the event, the host country raised awareness of the challenges faced by the tourism industry and how the industry can address these challenges. During the celebration of tourism day, the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) emphasized on the following:

  • Importance of digital advances and innovations in finding the solution to industry challenges.
  • Managing continued growth more sustainably and responsibly.

FAQs on World Tourism Day

Q.1. What was the World Tourism Day theme 2021?

The World Tourism Day theme 2021 was “Tourism for Inclusive Growth.” That year, the event was hosted by Ivory Coast. The importance of inclusivity in the growth of the tourism industry was discussed during the event.

Q.2. World Tourism Day is celebrated on?

World Tourism Day is observed on 27th September. It began in 1980 when the United Nations World Tourism Organization statutes were passed. The day has been commemorated yearly since then.

Q.3. What is the World Tourism Day theme 2023?

The World Tourism Day theme 2022 is “Tourism and green investment”. This year, the event will focus on need for more and better-targeted investments for the Sustainable Development Goals.

Q.4. Which country will host World Tourism Day 2023?

This year, Saudi Arabia will be hosting World Tourism Day. The official event will be hosted in Riyadh, and the theme of “Tourism and green investment” will be discussed.


Get your bulky cameras ready, unfold your maps and make sure your fanny pack still fits snugly. World Tourism Day every September 27,  raises awareness of the need for accessible tourism all over the planet.

World Tourism Day is the result of the work done by the UN’s specialized agency — the World Tourism Organization (WTO). If you’ve ever strolled through a charming, perfectly-preserved European village or town, you’ve probably seen the WTO at work. Boosting local economies and ensuring sustainable tourism are but a few of the benefits of the WTO.

More importantly, on World Tourism Day, the WTO makes sure that travel is accessible for everyone, including those with disabilities and folks with low-income. Whether you’re walking with a cane or rolling in a chair; the world is open for business to you and your friends. So, get traveling!



  1. Treat a normal day like a vacation

    Today, take a step back from your normal routine and consider: If I were on vacation in my hometown, what would I do? Where would a tourist go for the day? By checking out your own turf through the eyes of a tourist, you’ll support local businesses and you may see your town from a new perspective.

  2. Get the word out

    The key to continuous improvement in global tourism is economic stability and sustainability. Educate yourself on the best ways to see a new country, city, or village in ways that create a positive impact.

  3. Plan a trip

    If you’ve been putting off that vacation, use World Tourism Day as an opportunity to make those plans. Talk to friends and family with special challenges, either physical, financial or both; who may want to travel but have never been able to plan a trip. Together, you can help and encourage each other, following the message of the WTO that tourism is for all.


  1. It creates jobs

    All over the world, even in its most remote corners, tourism has become a dependable source of jobs. In the U.S. alone, the travel, tourism and hospitality industry supported 7.6 million jobs in 2015. This means one out of every 18 Americans is employed in tourism. When done responsibly, tourism can create jobs in areas where unemployment has risen due to unavoidable factors like automation.

  2. It’s a cash cow

    In 2015, international tourism generated $1.5 trillion in export earnings. This can be a tremendous benefit for smaller, under-developed communities. Developing a sustainable tourism ecosystem is paramount for ensuring these earnings are distributed among the community. Thanks to the work of the WTO, these areas are seeing smart tourism strategies put in place.

  3. It creates a better world

    Sure, the site of yet another lost tourist in your hometown may induce a small groan, but the reality is that traveling and seeing new places is good for our minds and good for our society. So, start planning your next trip!

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