Are short duration cultural festivals tourist attractions?

Robert Douglas McKercher, Wan Sze Mei, Sze Ming Tse

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

183 Citations (Scopus)


This paper examines the value of short duration cultural festivals as tourist attractions, with special emphasis on their role in attracting and retaining international tourists. The study examined visitors to three festivals held in Hong Kong during spring 2004. Relatively few tourists attended these events. Moreover, most were unaware of the festivals prior to arrival and about 80% made the decision to participate only when in the destination. Tourism attraction systems' theory reinforces the importance of awareness building prior to departure and suggests that in-destination awareness creation is ineffective in generating demand for these types of events, especially among short stay tourists. However, the costs associated with creating awareness in generating regions may not produce sufficiently valuable results, given the small window of opportunity for participation and the specialist nature of the market. McKercher et al.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)55-66
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Sustainable Tourism
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 20 Feb 2006


  • Attractions
  • Festivals
  • Markers

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management


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