Dark Tourism

Dark tourism, also called morbid, black, or grief tourism, involves traveling to places associated with death and tragedy; the meaning can also include the reasons that someone visits a particular site. Usually, the main attraction is NOT about the dark associations connected to the sites, but about their historical value.

 

One can argue that there are countless types of dark tourism; in any case, these are some of the main ones:

 

Genocide Tourism

Genocide is the deliberate, systematic killing of a particular group on a cultural or religious basis; genocide tourism is the visiting of the sites of these atrocities. Holocaust tourism is a specific subtype of genocide tourism.

 

War Tourism

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This one is obvious: war tourism is the visiting of sites related to war(s). This includes visits to battle re-enactments, war cemeteries, and war memorials. War tourism has a lot of overlap with genocide and Holocaust tourism.

 

Disaster tourism

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Disaster tourism is the visiting of sites that have been subjected to disastrous events, both natural and man-made. The attraction to such sites can be both short and long-term.

 

Cold War/Iron Curtain Tourism

This is the visiting of sites related to the Cold War. Sites under this banner can include geopolitical borders, bunkers, and atomic sites.

 

Nuclear/Atomic Tourism

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This type of tourism involves visiting sites related to nuclear technology, research, testing, explosion/accident sites, and everything related. There is a fair bit of overlap with Cold War tourism.

 

Grave Tourism

This is the visiting of cemeteries of any kind, for any reason, whether it’s an interest in famous graves, interesting statues, or something else.

 

Medical Dark Tourism

Medical Dark Tourism is about history and all the related gross things. It is not to be confused with regular medical tourism, which is traveling to other countries to undergo other medical procedures. Medical dark tourism can include visits to places like old hospitals, old asylums, medical museums, and plague towns.

 

Cult of Personality Tourism

This is visiting sites related to people around whom cults have built up people like serial killers, cult leaders, or tyrants, for instance.

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