INTERNATIONAL CULTURAL TOURISM CHARTER
MANAGING TOURISM AT PLACES OF HERITAGE SIGNIFICANCE

NOTE ON THE CHARTER REVISION PROCESS

This revised version of the ICOMOS International Cultural Tourism Charter has been developed by the ICOMOS International Scientific Committee on Cultural Tourism, over the last two years. It is currently in draft form and will be presented for endorsement to the ICOMOS General Assembly in Mexico in October 1999.

This Charter replaces the 1976 ICOMOS Cultural Tourism Charter, and reflects the enormous growth in world wide tourism since that time, as well as the changing attitudes and methodologies within the conservation community, those who safeguard and manage the world's cultural heritage places.

A major difference between the two Charters concerns the fundamental relationship between conservation and tourism. The original Charter concentrated on managing the tensions between tourists at heritage sites and those charged with protecting and conserving the places. Tourists were seen by many conservationists as a threat to the physical integrity and atmosphere of the place.

The new Charter seeks a new relationship. It promotes the concept that one of the major reasons for undertaking any form of conservation is to make the heritage significance of the place or object accessible to the visitor, in a managed way. Without a high level of public awareness and support the conservation of buildings and the cultural heritage generally will never achieve the political and funding support necessary for its survival.

The tourism industry is fully aware that heritage places and traditional cultures form a major percentage of the world's tourism attractions. They are equally aware how fragile they are. The ICOMOS International Cultural Tourism Charter encourages conservationists and the tourism industry to join together to meet this challenge and achieve a long term sustainability for the cultural heritage of every host community.

Graham Brooks
Charter Revision Coordinator

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