The origins of tourism
Tourism, the practice and process of enjoying time away from home in seeking leisure, relaxation and enjoyment, while using commercial service provision. As such, tourism is a product of modern social arrangements, beginning in Western Europe in the 17th century, although it has antecedents in classical antiquity. It differs from exploration in that tourists follow a “beaten path”, benefit from established delivery systems and, as befits pleasure-seekers, are generally safe from hardship, danger and embarrassment. Tourism, however, overlaps with other activities, interests and processes, including, for example, pilgrimage. This gives rise to common categories such as “business tourism”, “sports tourism” and “medical tourism” (international travel undertaken for the purpose of receiving medical care).