Holidays and travel

Holidays and travel

Medieval (c500-1500)

  • Religious tourism and pilgrimage became popular.
  • Crusades were a form of religious pilgrimage that involved long travels to Jerusalem.
  • Far-flung travels were undertaken by explorers like Marco Polo and recorded in travelogues.
  • Most of the population had few and infrequent holidays, usually tied to religious or harvest festivals.

Early Modern (1500-1750)

  • The Grand Tour became a popular custom among young aristocrats, primarily designed to broaden their education.
  • Thomas Cook organized the first package holidays in England in the mid 19th century, including train trips.
  • Improved transportation allowed for longer distance travel like rail and steamship.
  • General public still had few holidays, with occasional feasts or fairs.

Industrial Revolution (1750-1900)

  • Building of public parks provided leisure areas.
  • Increase in worker leisure time due to shorter working hours.
  • Device known as the magic lantern projected images on walls, a precursor to the cinema.
  • Steamboats and railways made travel faster and cheaper.
  • The Bank Holiday Act of 1871 gave workers a few paid holidays each year.
  • Seaside resorts, such as Blackpool, became popular due to railway expansion.

20th Century Present Day

  • Development of the automobile and the aeroplane allowed mass tourism.
  • The concept of cheap package holidays allowed more people to travel abroad.
  • Introduction of paid holiday leave from work by law.
  • Creation of theme parks such as Disneyland offer leisure and entertainment.
  • The internet now offers easy booking of holidays and allows exploration of holiday destinations virtually.
  • More recent trends towards staycations and eco-tourism reflecting environmental concerns.
  • Olympics and World Cup events have turned into global tourism affairs.