Wellness Tourism: An Article Selection

We are pleased to present the following article selection on Wellness Tourism, created in collaboration with Margaret Deery, Editor-in-Chief of Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Management, and Sebastian Filep, an Editorial Board member.

There are 5 sections, each with its own informative introduction written especially to help guide you through the research in this exciting field:

  1. The relationship between tourism and well-being
  2. Spa and beauty tourism
  3. The environment, ecology and adventure tourism
  4. Tourism and spirituality
  5. Personal and Family Growth

Read on to discover great articles and gain insights into what Wellness Tourism is and the fascinating developments in this growing subject area.

What is Wellness Tourism?

Happiness, wellbeing, relaxation, and rejuvenation are among the many concepts associated with tourism and more recently have become the focus for a number of tourism researchers. This overview of the research area by Smith, Deery and Puzcko illustrates the range of perspectives taken on this topic. Wellness Tourism: An Article Selection continues the review of trends in this area.

The concept of well-being, for example, especially the subjective well-being of those who travel, has recently received empirical attention in tourism studies (Nawijn, 2011). Subjective well –being (SWB) has been defined as “a broad category of phenomena that includes people’s emotional responses, domain satisfactions and global judgments of life satisfaction” (Diener, Suh, Lucas and Smith, 1999, p. 277). High SWB hence consists of the mix of three factors: the relative absence of anxiety and depression, frequent and intense positive affective states, and global life satisfaction (Diener et al., 1999). Subjective well-being, sometimes referred to as happiness, is mostly, if not entirely, a conscious state of mind (Veenhoven, 2000), and as such it can be examined empirically.

The term ‘Wellness Tourism’ covers a number of sub-themes, many of which are discussed in this article selection. Read the introductions to each section for more information on the sub-themes and the articles included in them.

References

Diener, E., Suh, E. M., Lucas, R. E. & Smith, H. L. (1999). Subjective well-being: Three
decades of progress. Psychological Bulletin, 125: 276-302.

Nawijn, J. (2011). Determinants of Daily Happiness on Vacation. Journal of Travel Research, 50(5): 559-566.

Smith, M., Deery, M., & Puzko, L. (2010). The role of health, wellness and tourism for destination development [Special section]. Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Management, 17, 94–95. DOI 10.1375/jhtm.17.1.94

Margaret Deery  Sebastian Filep 

Margaret Deery, PhD; University of Surrey, UK, Leeds Beckett University, UK and Curtin University, Australia. Editor-in-Chief of Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Management.

Sebastian Filep, PhD; University of Otago and Victoria University, Melbourne. Editorial Board member of Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Management.

Want to see your research here? Explore our hospitality, sport, and tourism management journals to find the perfect home for your research. 98% of authors who published in the tourism portfolio in 2014 said they were very satisfied with the journal they published in, and 98% said they planned to submit to the journal again.* Simply pick a journal, visit the journal website, and select ‘submit your paper’.

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* Elsevier Author Feedback Survey Results 2014

The relationship between tourism and well-being

Empirical investigations of this topic in tourism studies are important for various stakeholders, including the tourists themselves. Read an introduction to the topic and the articles below, written by Sebastian Filep.

A 21st-Century Approach to Health Tourism Spas: The Case of Portugal
Nuno Silva Gustavo

The happiness factor in tourism: subjective well-being and social tourism
Scott McCabe, Sarah Johnson

Vacation and well-being: a study of Chinese tourists
Yi Chen , Xinran Y. Lehto, Liping Cai

Spa and beauty tourism

While the academic focus on spa tourism is relatively recent, the use of spa therapy for health and wellbeing dates back to Roman times. The spa and beauty components of wellness tourism is emerging quickly as a new area for the tourism industry. Find out more in the introduction to this section, written by Margaret Deery.

Essential customer service factors and the segmentation of older visitors within wellness tourism based on hot springs hotels
Kaung-Hwa Chen, Hsiou-Hsiang Liu, Feng-Hsiang Chang

Website Effectiveness in Wellness Promotion By Portuguese SpasVeronika Joukes, Chris Gerry

The effect of atmospheric cues and involvement on pleasure and relaxation: The spa hotel context
Sandra Maria Correia Loureiro, Marta Almeida, Paulo Rita

Measuring spa-goers’ preferences: A conjoint analysis approach
Deniz Kucukusta, Basak Denizci Guillet

The environment, ecology and adventure tourism

The impact of nature on wellbeing is an area that has been extensively examined and the articles in this group explore the particular relationship that tourism products and activities have on the sense of wellbeing. Read on for more information on the topic and selected articles, written by Margaret Deery.

Rural Wellbeing Tourism: Motivations and Expectations
Juho Pesonen, Raija Komppula

Developing a forest-based wellbeing tourism product together with customers – An ethnographic approach
Henna Konu

Happiness and nature-based vacations
Salvatore Bimonte, Valeria Faralla

An exploration of tourist motivation in rural settings: The case of Troodos, Cyprus
Anna Farmaki

Validating a customer well-being index related to natural wildlife tourism
Dong-Jin Lee, Stefan Kruger, Mee-Jin Whang, Muzaffer Uysal, M. Joseph Sirgy

Therapeutic landscapes: An evolving theme
W. Gesler

Therapeutic mobilities: walking and ‘steps’ to wellbeing and health
Anthony C. Gatrell

Performing health in place: The holy well as a therapeutic assemblage
Ronan Foley

Onsen (hot springs) in Japan—Transforming terrain into healing landscapes
Mihaela Serbulea, Unnikrishnan Payyappallimana

Lourdes: healing in a place of pilgrimage
Wil Gesler

Tourism and spirituality

Spirituality in tourism is an increasingly important topic of interest to scholars. For managers and workers in the tourism sector, this type of research helps in better understanding visitor motivation and satisfaction, while at a broader level, the theme of spirituality plays a role in destination and product development. Find out more in this introduction to the topic and the articles below, written by Sebastian Filep.

Byron Bay: An Alternate Health and Wellness Destination
Meredith Wray, Jennifer Laing, Cornelia Voigt

Analysing Wellness Tourism Provision: A Retreat Operators' Study
Catherine Kelly

Tourism and spirituality: a phenomenological analysis
Gregory B. Willson, Alison J. McIntosh, Anne. L. Zahra

Motivations of volunteer overseas and what have we learned – The experience of Taiwanese students
Tze-Jen Pan

Spiritual attitudes and visitor motivations at the Beltane Fire Festival, Edinburgh  
Catherine M. Matheson, Russell Rimmer, Ross Tinsley

Volunteer tourism: A review
Stephen Wearing, Nancy Gard McGehee

Rural tourism: A spiritual experience?
Richard Sharpley, Deborah Jepson

Personal and Family Growth

The concept of wellness tourism impacts, of course, on all tourists and the role that family members have in travel decision making is linked with the impact that this has on health issues. Find out more about the articles below in this short commentary, written by Margaret Deery.

Travel by families with children possessing disabilities: Motives and activities
Songee Kim, Xinran Y. Lehto

Understanding leisure travel motivations of travelers with acquired mobility impairments
Lei Shi, Shu Cole, H. Charles Chancellor

Special thanks to Margaret Deery  and Sebastian Filep of Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Managementfor their time and effort in helping to make this special article selection. Read the articles on Wellness Tourism from the journal, listed below, and consider submitting your research to the Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Management today!

Byron Bay: An Alternate Health and Wellness Destination
Meredith Wray, Jennifer Laing, Cornelia Voigt

Website Effectiveness in Wellness Promotion By Portuguese Spas
Veronika Joukes, Chris Gerry

Analysing Wellness Tourism Provision: A Retreat Operators' Study
Catherine Kelly

The Role of Health, Wellness and Tourism for Destination Development
Melanie Smith, Margaret Deery, Laszlo Puzko

One Country's Transformation to Spa Destination: The Case of Canada
Marion Joppe

Predictors of Tourists' Wellbeing Holiday Intentions in Finland
Henna Konu, Tommi Laukkanen

Rural Wellbeing Tourism: Motivations and Expectations
Juho Pesonen, Raija Komppula

A 21st-Century Approach to Health Tourism Spas: The Case of Portugal
Nuno Silva Gustavo