Title of Paper

Vortex Tourism: Research using a mixed method approach

Author Bios (50 Words)

Kim Pham is a second year Ph.D. student in the School of Community Resources & Development, Arizona State University. Her M.S. degree is in Parks, Recreation and Tourism. Kim worked with travel agents in Vietnam. Her research interests include sustainable tourism practices, destination management, and visitors’ and residents’ perspectives about tourism.

Abstract (150 Words)

Vortex is a place where the earth is exceptionally alive with energy. Tourists are often attracted to vortex sites, believing that this energy will enhance their spiritual and physical health. This study attempted to understand vortex visitors, an under-explored niche tourism activity. Research was conducted at a famous vortex tourist destination in the Southwestern U.S. using a mixed methods approach that combined an on-site visitor survey with a mail-back resident survey, in addition to a social media analysis. Results suggested that vortex visitors have some characteristics that distinguish them from other visitors. They align closely with sustainable tourism principles. Public opinion of vortex tourism was mixed on social media. Additional interviews conducted with residents will clarify their attitudes about vortex tourism. These findings will be useful for destination planners and managers to address vortex sites as a distinct component of sustainable tourism.

Keywords: Vortex tourism, vortex, sustainable tourism, niche tourism

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Vortex Tourism: Research using a mixed method approach

Vortex is a place where the earth is exceptionally alive with energy. Tourists are often attracted to vortex sites, believing that this energy will enhance their spiritual and physical health. This study attempted to understand vortex visitors, an under-explored niche tourism activity. Research was conducted at a famous vortex tourist destination in the Southwestern U.S. using a mixed methods approach that combined an on-site visitor survey with a mail-back resident survey, in addition to a social media analysis. Results suggested that vortex visitors have some characteristics that distinguish them from other visitors. They align closely with sustainable tourism principles. Public opinion of vortex tourism was mixed on social media. Additional interviews conducted with residents will clarify their attitudes about vortex tourism. These findings will be useful for destination planners and managers to address vortex sites as a distinct component of sustainable tourism.

Keywords: Vortex tourism, vortex, sustainable tourism, niche tourism