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World Tourism Day

Quick Facts

The United Nations’ (UN) World Tourism Day is annually held on September 27 to raise awareness on the benefits of tourism.

Local names

NameLanguage
World Tourism DayEnglish
Día Mundial del TurismoSpanish
עולם יום תיירותHebrew
يوم السياحة العالميArabic
세계 관광의 날Korean
WelttourismustagGerman

World Tourism Day 2014

Saturday, September 27, 2014

World Tourism Day 2015

Sunday, September 27, 2015
List of dates for other years

Many people around celebrate the United Nations’ (UN) World Tourism Day, which is on September 27 each year. The day aims to foster awareness among the international community of the importance of tourism and its social, cultural, political and economic values.

An senior couple with a camera, touring on vacation.

World Tourism Day recognizes the importance of tourists and the tourism industry across the globe.

©iStockphoto.com/Alex Nikada

What do people do?

The United Nations’ World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) invites people worldwide to participate in World Tourism Day on September 27 every year.  The UNWTO Secretary-General annually sends out a message to the general public to mark the occasion. Many tourism enterprises and organizations, as well as government agencies with a special interest in tourism, celebrate the event with various special events and festivities.

Different types of competitions, such as photo competitions promoting tourism, as well as tourism award presentations in areas such as ecotourism, are held on World Tourism Day. Other activities include free entries, discounts or special offers for the general public to any site of tourism interest. Government and community leaders, as tourism business representatives, may make public announcements or offer special tours or fares to promote both their region and World Tourism Day on or around September 27.

Public life

The World Tourism Day is a UN observance and it is not a public holiday.

 Background

Tourism has experienced continued growth and deeper diversification to become one of the fastest growing economic sectors in the world. ‎Modern tourism is closely linked to development and includes more new destinations for tourists. These dynamics turned tourism into a key driver for socio-‎economic progress.‎ Tourism has become one of the major players in ‎international commerce, and represents at the same time one of the main income ‎sources for many developing countries.

The UNWTO decided in late September 1979 to institute World Tourism Day, which was first celebrated on September 27, 1980. September 27 was chosen as the date for World Tourism Day because that date coincided with an important milestone in world tourism: the anniversary of the adoption of the UNWTO Statutes on September 27, 1970.

The UNWTO believes that the date for World Tourism Day is appropriate because it comes at the end of the high tourist season in the northern hemisphere and the start of the tourist season in the southern hemisphere, when tourism is of topical interest to many people worldwide, particularly travelers and those working in the tourism sector. Each year has a different theme – for example, “Tourism – Celebrating Diversity” was designated as the theme for 2009, with Ghana as the event’s host country for that year.

World Tourism Day Observances

WeekdayDateYearNameHoliday typeWhere it is observed
ThuSep 271990World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
FriSep 271991World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
SunSep 271992World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
MonSep 271993World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
TueSep 271994World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
WedSep 271995World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
FriSep 271996World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
SatSep 271997World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
SunSep 271998World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
MonSep 271999World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
WedSep 272000World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
ThuSep 272001World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
FriSep 272002World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
SatSep 272003World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
MonSep 272004World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
TueSep 272005World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
WedSep 272006World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
ThuSep 272007World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
SatSep 272008World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
SunSep 272009World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
MonSep 272010World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
TueSep 272011World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
ThuSep 272012World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
FriSep 272013World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
SatSep 272014World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
SunSep 272015World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
TueSep 272016World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
WedSep 272017World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
ThuSep 272018World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
FriSep 272019World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
SunSep 272020World Tourism DayUnited Nations observance 
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