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The history of travel and tourism

Trade travel has existed since the dawn of civilization. At that time, the port of Lothal was an important center of trade between the Indus Valley and the Sumerian civilizations.

600 BC and later

Early leisure activities for travelers can be traced back to the Babylonian and Egyptian empires. In Babylon, a museum of historical antiquities was opened to the public. The Egyptians held many religious festivals that attracted the pious and just curious people. Foreigners flocked to the cities to see the famous art and buildings.

In India, as elsewhere, kings traveled extensively to strengthen their empires. Brahmins and common people traveled for religious purposes. Thousands of Brahmins and common people flocked to Sarnath (Sarnath) and Sravasti (Sravasti) to be honored with the miraculous smile of the Enlightened Buddha.

500 BC, Greek civilization

Greek tourists traveled to the healing places of the gods. At this time, society began to enjoy sports more and more. Athens has become an important destination for tourists visiting major attractions such as the Parthenon. In large cities and seaports, hotels were arranged to provide for the needs of travelers. In them, courtesans were the main entertainment offered.

At this time, travel notes were born. Herodotus was the first travel guide writer. Guidebooks that appeared in the fourth century described Athens, Sparta and Troy. Road signs appeared, which began to suggest to travelers the location of hotels.

The Roman Empire

With no frontiers between countries from England to Syria, and with the clearing of pirates from the seas by Roman patrols, travel conditions improved dramatically. The first good roads combined with roadside inns (the forerunners of today’s motels) fueled an increase in travellers. The Romans traveled to Sicily, Greece, Rhodes, Troy and Egypt. From 300 AD trips to the Holy Land became very popular. The Romans introduced their guidebooks (itineraria) which listed hotels with symbols to determine their quality.

Rich dachas were built not far from Rome, occupied mainly during the spring season. Fashionable resorts are being built around the Gulf of Naples. Naples attracts pensioners and intellectuals, fashionistas and aesthetes flock to Cumae, while Bajae attracts commoners, becoming a place known for its hooliganism, drunkenness and nightly chants.

Travel and tourism has never reached such a status before.

Middle Ages

In the Middle Ages, travel was difficult and dangerous, whether people traveled on business or out of a sense of duty.
Going on a journey, adventurers aspired to fame and fortune. Europeans tried to open a sea route to India for trade purposes and thus discovered America and partially explored Africa.

Traveling the world, wandering players and minstrels made their living. Missionaries, saints, etc. traveled to spread the sacred word. The Mughals pioneered recreational travel in India. The Mughal kings built luxurious palaces and laid out beautiful gardens in places of exceptional beauty. For example, Jehangir traveled to Kashmir, amazed by its beauty. Traveled regularly to create empires and for the sake of pilgrimage.

Grand Tour

From the beginning of the seventeenth century, a new type of tourism appeared, which was a direct consequence of the Renaissance. During the reign of Elizabeth I, young people who wanted to become lawyers were encouraged to go to the Continent to receive an appropriate education. It later became customary for a young gentleman to complete his education by going for three or more years on the “Grand Tour” accompanied by a tutor. During the supposedly educational journey, young people enjoyed life and culture in Paris, Venice or Florence.

By the end of the eighteenth century, this tradition had become a distinctive feature of the nobility. Gradually pleasure travel replaced educational travel. The Napoleonic Wars almost forced to abandon travel for about 30 years, which led to a partial loss of the Grand Tour tradition.

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