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Disaster tourism: Does tragedy like company? - Travel Wire Asia

Abstract: Nowadays tourism involves the movement of millions of people to virtually all countries on the surface of this globe. Walking Tourism — Promoting Regional Development. Tourism and the Sustainable Development Goals — Journey to Anlong Veng was one of the main strongholds of the Khmer Rouge after their regime was toppled in January Buildings, temples, and ancient structures were destroyed. Till this day, more than 50 percent of its people still live in temporary shelters or live in traumatic conditions. Durbar Square in Kathmandu, Nepal which was severely damaged after the major earthquake.

While the recovery has been slow, Nepal is getting back on its feet thanks to volunteers, mercenaries, worldwide aid, and tourism. Tip: Be sensitive to the locals. Only twice did the US ever use nuclear weapons and that was in Japan. The bombings left death and destruction in its wake, killing at least , people, most of whom were civilians. Many others perished due to radiation and illness.

The Disaster Tourist

Modern-day Hiroshima may be far from the destruction that the bomb left in its wake, but the trauma that hangs in the air is hard to extinguish. Located in the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, the Hiroshima Peace Museum exhibits belongings left behind by the victims, photos, and other materials that convey the horror of the event. Tip: Remember to pay your respects at the various monuments and memorials dedicated to the victims and survivors of the bombing. Similarly, visiting disaster sites is thought to have an effect on empathy, but the nature of the effect it has depends on the particulars of the visit.

Unorganized visits, for example, can often raise empathy by forcing the visitors to see suffering up close and prompting them to consider how to interact with victims. During the 10 minute video, Zuckerberg explains how Facebook partnered with Red Cross to build population map from satellite imagery and better allocate the relief effort. The public reception to the tour was unanimously negative.


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Zuckerberg drew criticism for describing VR as "magical" in its ability to transport people to disaster zones, and most viewers considered the cartoon avatars of Zuckerberg and Franklin to be an inappropriately jovial tone. The day following the livestream, Zuckerberg apologized, explaining, "When you're in VR yourself, the surroundings feel quite real. But that sense of empathy doesn't extend well to people watching you as a virtual character on a 2D screen.

Lucky survivor

When the nearby volcano Mt Vesuvius erupted in 79 AD, the eruption buried the city of Pompeii and the nearby city of Herculaneum and preserved everything from its streets to its frescoes under mounds of pumice and ash. Although Pompeii was initially rediscovered in , tourism was undesirable until Spanish engineer Rocque Joaquin de Alcubierre performed a much larger excavation in , which revealed many noteworthy structures, such as a fully intact Roman theatre. With the cause of the fire unknown and a death toll of thirty-seven passengers, the Hindenburg disaster became one of the biggest news stories of its time.

Today, a bronze plaque and cement outline the site of the incident.

Immediately east of the crash site, volunteers of the Navy Lakehurst Historical Society will conduct public tours of Historic Hangar One, the location where the Hindenburg was kept. On the morning of April 26, , the number four reactor of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant exploded, producing airborne radioactive materials and a fire that burned for ten days.


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The Chernobyl explosion caused dozens of direct deaths and thousands of deaths due to long-term exposure. In the aftermath, , residents were displaced from Chernobyl and the nearby city of Pripyat. The highlights of the tour include visiting Red Forest, a pine tree woodland destroyed by radioactive contamination, exploring Kopachi, a nearby village that was demolished due to high contamination levels, and finally coming within feet of the remains of the number four reactor.


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These tours are met with some controversy because despite that SoloEast Travel claims that publicly accessible areas surrounding the power plant contain low levels of radiation and are deemed safe, a number of third party scientists disagree. An estimated 30 million plus gallons spilled. Oil from the spill would eventually contaminate more than 11, square-miles of ocean and miles of coastline. The spill killed hundreds of sea otters, harbor seals, and eagles and hundreds of thousands of seabird in the days following the spill. Despite that it is not the world's largest oil spill, the Exxon Valdez oil spill is typically considered the most notorious in American history.

Having been among the first responders, the family-run Stan Stephens Cruises operates glacier tours out of Prince William Sound that highlight the history surrounding the Exxon Valdez spill and its aftermath. At the time, the disaster had a large impact on the politics, population, and economics for a sizable portion of the United States. A decade after the incident, the effects of Hurricane Katrina are still visible and catastrophic. Although many companies offer bus tours of the still-damaged regions, critics argues that these tours interfere with the relief effort.

Some have suggested that curious tourists should instead go on bike tours in order to restrict the disruption to residents trying to get their lives back on track. Quite frequently, tours will focus on showcasing the culture of specific districts and neighborhood, treating Hurricane Katrina as the most recent event in a much longer cultural history.