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The future of tourism

In the early 1990s there were about 5,000 tourists a year visiting Antarctica. By the 2009-2010 tourist season there were an estimated 37,000 visitors and by 2019-2020 this figure jumped to 74,401.

Student Activity

Tourism of the future

Imagine you are on holiday in Antarctica in 2030. Choose one of the scenarios below, and imagine these changes have taken place:

  • Tourism is now limited to cruise trips only, and all activities and facilities for tourists on land are banned.
  • There is a quota for the number of tourists that can visit Antarctica in any one season. Trips to Antarctica are now very expensive and exclusive, and there is a ban on all vehicles and helicopters on land.
  • Mass tourism is allowed, including cruises on an increasing number of large ships carrying over 2,000 passengers. Land-based facilities now include luxury hotels, restaurants and airstrips for daily flights for tourists.

example postcard of a penguin

  • Download a postcard. You’ve got 10 minutes to write a postcard home!
  • Describe your holiday. What have you seen and done, and what you think about it?
  • Afterwards, compare your postcards. Which of these futures would you prefer? And which of them do you think is most likely?