Mass Cultural Council
About Us Staff Search
Cultural Tourism
Cultural Tourism 101
Understanding Who's Visiting and Why
Connect with Your Regional Tourism Council
10 Ways to Tap into Tourism
See What Others Have Done
 Who's Who in Cultural Tourism
Glossary of Terms
 Web Resources
 Current Research
Join Mass Cultural Council eMail List

Understand Who's Visiting and Why

Before you develop a plan to attract cultural tourists to your cultural organization, you need to know who they are and how to connect with them. Understanding where these people come from and why, as well as how long they stay, will help you put your marketing dollars to work.

Celebrating the Fourth of July at Old Sturbridge Village; photo by Thomas Neill


  • According to research by the U.S. Travel Association, there are more than 146 million adult travelers in the US. About 81% of these folks included cultural, arts, heritage or historic activities while on a one-way trip of 50 miles or more during the past year.

  • Among these Cultural Tourists, the most popular cultural activities were: visiting historic sites (31%), visiting museums (24 percent), visiting art galleries (15%) and seeing live performances (14%).

In Massachusetts:

  • In 2008, Massachusetts was ranked 15th among the 50 states, attracting 2.2 percent of America's travel market, or 27.1 million people.

  • Of that number, 17.4 million tourists came to Massachusetts from out of state; 1.9 million came from outside the US. The majority of the domestic travelers come from New England, Pennsylvania, and New York.

  • The typical domestic traveler visits during the summer, travels by car, and stays an average of 3.6 nights here.
     twitter icon     youtube icon
© Mass Cultural Council 2018