Body of Cultural Tourism in Turkey and Need of Product Differentiation Based On Tangible Cultural Assets

Bilgehan Gülcan
2010 İşletme Araştırmaları Dergisi  
Although Turkey has started its tourism journey with cultural tourism, after 1980's sea, sand, sun based and entertainment dominant torism approach has developed. Nowadays, more than half of the foreign tourists come to Turkey for the above purpose. Keeping in mind the cultural assets of Turkey, cultural tourism is often pronounced to be the best candidate to diversify the tourism, but only 6% of the overall foreign tourists visit Turkey for cultural purposes. On the other hand, this ratio has
more » ... tendency to decrease year by year. In this paper which has been generated using secondary data, the problems faced in the progress of cultural tourism in Turkey has been identified and discussed. First problem is idenfied being the all-inclusive type accommodation, and the latter one is identified as being the body of the product in cultural tourism which is taken as the focus of this study. According to the results, Turkey's cultural tourism product is especially based on tangible cultural assets, but this product shows strong dependancy on both geographical and some particular historical periods. In addition, it is identified that existing character of the products has not been changed for a long time and as a result has disadvantages in competitiveness. Thus it has been shown that, differentation is needed in tangible culture based product. In this context, some alternatives for product differentiation oppotunities for product developers are also advised.
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