Tourism & Museum : Interrelations In the Context of Covid19
Tourism & Museum : Interactive Synergies in the context of Covid19
Prior to getting in to the details about the interrelations in between tourism and museum, let’s have a birds eyeview on the very concept of tourism and museum as well. Tourism is essentially a pleasure activity which revolves around three P’s (i.e. people, product and place) and all kinds of possible interrelationships that can exist between them. Tourism is comparatively a bigger aspect which takes in to its fold so many different stream of studies like archaeology, wildlife, hotels, transportation, museology …etc. The ultimate success of tourism depends on the individual success of all that it encompasses. If at all, we broadly categorise the tourist attractions under two heads then those will be natural tourism attractions and manmade tourism attractions like staged exhibits in a museum or art gallery, temples handicrafts , handlooms ,cultural performances , local cuisine etc. The tourism product is composite in nature and includes everything that the tourists purchase , see ,experience and feel from the time they leave home until the time they return . The tourism product also involves experiences and expectations which are not directly purchased but which nevertheless still form part of the overall package. Thus museums stand as the most sought-after man made tourism product being looked for by the tourist community in every destination.
The museum is an institution that preserves important artifacts and other objects such as science, art, culture or history and makes it available to the public through exhibitions, which can be permanent or temporary.
‘Museums’ and ‘Tourism’ are by and large thought to be two practically separate fields . Museum galleries are driven by safeguarding and showcasing the motivations behind learning but ‘Tourism’ is related with the matter of recreation and with get-aways .While one( Museum) requires consideration, the other one(Tourism) involves unwinding….while one needs attention, the other entails relaxation…. Yet, on a more principal level, both ( that is Museum and Tourism) result from a shared factor and that is travel, as the articles ,customs , traditions and the guests all move ,to and from the site.
It is sure that the development of the travel industry has added to the extreme changes in museums in the course of last few years, having direct equal relationship as far as creating a positive two way impact on one another.
‘Tourism’ must develop an awareness of ‘Museum’ concepts and practices while museums have to seek to understand tourism and how it functions. Communications are important since both sectors have a lot to meditate to each other regarding the theoretical approach as well as practical solution . A cooperation with the Museum world is important for tourism since most museums have certain potential to attract visitors including tourists and to accommodate them as well . Museums offer unique opportunity for consuming and experiencing cultural heritage without damaging the resource .This is a business opportunity .One example can be cited over here. That is all those tourists who are visiting the Konark Sun temple, are not positively visiting the ASI On-site Museum in Konark. If at all a single higher price ticket can be initiated and that would allow a tourist to visit both of them , then the footfall in the ASI On- site Museum will be definitely hiked.
Big Foot Open Air Museum,Goa
Local man with fish…modern man with digicam( Big Foot Open Air Museum,Goa)
Nowadays museums have already gone beyond walls. Traditional museums are enclosed spaces, where items displayed in galleries are housed in glass-enclosed niches , but the open-air museum is a category of museum that displays collections of art , craft and objects having historical importance outside the door and in the open air. For example, the Bhopal-based Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Manav Sangrahalaya.
Even the villages of indigenous peoples surrounded by forests that have not been touched by modernity can play the role of an open air museum.
In view of the horrors of the now-ubiquitous Covid 19, tourists want to stay away from crowded urban attractions. Present day tourists prefer not to stay in five-star hotels in the city but in tents in small resorts located in comparatively lesser known destinations or rural areas. Compared to other cities in the world, the city with the largest number of museums (128) in its bosom is Mexico City in Central America. According to the World Museum Community, there are more than 55000 museums in 202 countries. But those museums are locked today. Therefore, it can be assumed that the importance of the open air museum is gaining ground. Another solution during this crisis of pandemic, is that digitisation of informations, combined with increasing capacity of digital information storage. This can cause the traditional model of museums( i.e a static ‘collection of collections’)to expand to include virtual exhibits and high resolution images of their collections for perusal,study and exploration from any place of the world with the help of internet.
The recent economic impact report given by the World Travel and Tourism Council goes like this……
” # In 2019, the Travel & Tourism sector contributed 10.4% to global GDP; a share which decreased to 5.5% in 2020 due to ongoing restrictions to mobility.
# In 2020, 62 million jobs were lost, representing a drop of 18.5%, leaving just 272 million employed across the sector globally, compared to 334 million in 2019.
# The threat of job losses persists as many jobs are currently supported by government retention schemes and reduced hours, which without a full recovery of Travel & Tourism could be lost.
# Domestic visitor spending decreased by 45%, while international visitor spending declined by an unprecedented 69.4%.”
So it is because of this deadly epidemic of COVID 19 , the global tourism industry has been hit hardest by this Corona epidemic.
Once this pandemic is over, tourism will resume with renewed enthusiasm and excitement.
But TOURISM will never cease to exist…that inherent desire to travel , that tendency to exchange the known for the unknown, that irresistible desire for wanderlust and sunlust will remain there…. After all the wanderer one gathers honey.
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Dr. Manoj Mishra