World Tourism Day 2013 | Tourism and Water: Protecting our Common Future | The Insight Files |

People are naturally attracted to water destinations, to coastal wetlands such as coral reefs and beaches, and to inland wetlands such as lakes and rivers, reflecting the strong bond between people and nature as well as the unique aesthetic appeal of wetlands.


Despite the diversification of the global tourism market, coastal and beach tourism remains the dominant segment in terms of number of tourists. As such, water destinations are a significant part of the global tourism experience and likely to be a key part of the expansion in demand for tourism locations. Tourism in wetlands offers many positive opportunities at the national, regional and local levels, including economic benefits to national and local economies, support for local livelihoods and local cultures, and, importantly, support for wetland conservation.