WHY? Because the heritage business has a dark side! Beneath the simple sounding stories in the Visitor Guide and behind the locked gates marked PRIVATE, there lies a multitude of inconvenient stories, hilarities, wonders, extremes and outrages. When Counter-Tourism opens the doors, tourism becomes a funny, subversive and adventurous experience - not a deferential procession through the unrevealing homes and castles of Heritage plc. Counter-Tourism upsets the sanitising efforts of the heritage industry. It is also a personal and social journey of mini-pilgrimages, challenges and pleasures.
HOLD ON – IS THERE AN AGENDA HERE? Yes – this is an approach to place/space that celebrates the multiplicities of meaning in every heritage site and upsets the industry’s attempts at meaning-control and homogenisation – call it “mythogeography”. It’s what gives counter-tourism its emphasis on the sites of heritage, on the places themselves.
- By intensifying and sharpening your perceptions - see what’s behind the scenes, outside the site, just offstage.
- By blowing apart the homogenous heritage story to uncover, the multiplicity of stories.
- By changing the kind of tourist you are.