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Adventure Tourism

Course CodeBTR302
Fee CodeS3
Duration (approx)100 hours
QualificationStatement of Attainment



This course will assist you to either start up your own adventure tourism business or manage someone else's.  Adventure tourism requires staff to understand the needs of their risk taking customers and be able to cater to them. 

Did you know one form of adventure tourism which intrinsically motivates tourists is working on conservation projects. Conservation Volunteer organisations are located across the world and are devoted to practical conservation of natural features and wildlife. Volunteers pay to work on projects which contribute to the improvement of the environment. These have included monitoring of turtle hatcheries in Costa Rica, trail maintenance in Yosemite National Park (USA), working in animal rehabilitation centres in Bolivia, collecting data on wildlife populations in Africa and monitoring koala habitat in Australia.


Lesson Structure

There are 8 lessons in this course:

  1. Scope and nature of Adventure tourism
    • Introduction
    • Historical Themes
    • Adventure Tourism Experiences
    • Motivating Factors for Adventure Tourism
    • Adventure Activities
    • Limitations and Risks
    • Artifical Environments
    • Non-Physical Adventure Tourism
  2. The Product - Sources & Types
    • Types of Adventure Tourism
    • Types of Adventure Locations
    • New Zealand
    • Iceland
    • India
    • Africa
    • Namibia
    • Brazil
    • Information Sources
  3. Management
    • Issues
    • Adventure Tour Operators
    • Retail Travel Agents
    • Accommodation Establishments
    • Transport-to destination and within destination
    • Adventure Ground Handlers
    • Media-guide books, travel writers, magazines
    • Marketing
    • Seasonal Fluctuations
    • Marketing Tools
  4. The Customer
    • Adventure Tour Customers
    • Market Sector
    • Tourist Motivation
    • Conservation Tourism
    • Adventure Tourim Behaviour
    • Risk Taking
    • Ecotourism
    • Customer Expectations
  5. Locations & Facilities - Artificial environments
    • Artifical Environment Tourism
    • Artifical Adventure Environments
    • Advancements in Adventure Developments
    • Examples
    • Classification
  6. Locations & Facilities - Natural
    • Natural Environments
    • Adventure Tourism in Natural Environments
    • Wildlife Tourism
    • Nature-based Tourism in Antarctica
    • Ecotourism
    • Benefits of Nature-based Tourism
    • Nature Based Ecotourism
    • Locations and Destinations
    • Drawbacks and Advantages of Developing Facilities in Wilderness Areas
  7. Ethics, Sustainability and Environmental impacts
    • Introduction
    • Social and Cultural Impacts
    • Environmental Impacts
    • Economic Impacts
  8. Risk management & Insurance
    • Some Categories of Risk
    • Risk Management Strategies & Plans
    • Assessing the Risk
    • Crisis Management
    • Insurance

Each lesson culminates in an assignment which is submitted to the school, marked by the school's tutors and returned to you with any relevant suggestions, comments, and if necessary, extra reading.


  • Define the nature and scope of adventure tourism
  • Identify types of adventure tours, and sources of information on them.
  • Consider the requirements of managing an adventure tourism destination or service.
  • Identify potential customers, customer needs and requirements in planning and conducting adventure tours.
  • Identify various kinds of artificial environments for adventure tours, and the facilities typically provided at them.
  • Discuss the requirements and problems associated with using natural locations for adventure tours.
  • Identify ethical and environmental issues related to adventure tourism.
  • Identify kinds of risk and strategies for reducing their negative impacts on customers and operators.

What You Will Do

  • Define Adventure Tourism in your own words.
  • List target groups for marketing adventure tourism.
  • Determine what type of adventure tourism do you consider to have the greatest potential for financial success in your region.
  • Summarize brochures on different adventure tourism attractions, services or tours.
  • Compile a list of Adventure Tourism attractions
  • Analyse the potential of adventure tourism in the region in which you live.
  • Compare the attractions and disadvantages of three different locations or destinations in adventure tourism.
  • Compare Adventure Tourism with other types of Tourism?
  • Investigate media influence Adventure Tourism in your Country?
  • Explain licensing requirements for three different types of adventure tourism activities in your country.
  • Describe ways in which the adventure tourism market might be segmented.
  • Research consumer trends changing in adventure tourism?
  • Explain the difference between soft and hard adventurers.
  • Research then discuss the relationship between adventure and risk.
  • Discover what kinds of people are most likely to go on adventure tours?
  • Differentiate between artificial and natural adventure tourism destinations.
  • List as many types of different artificial tourism attractions as you can conceive of (they do not have to exist), and indicate beside each what you believe is its likely target market.
  • Arrange a list above into soft & hard destinations.
  • Report on the environment, facilities and services at the two different adventure tourism destinations. in two columns: one column hard & one soft
  • List different types of natural adventure tourism activities
  • Consider areas of natural adventure tourism have experienced growth in recent years?
  • Investigate issues should management consider when planning to use natural adventure tourism destinations?


An Extract From The Course


Nature-based Tourism in Antarctica

Tour Operator Case Study:

Peregrine offer small group cruises and voyages to Antarctica in specialised ice-breaker ships. These tours allow participants to see seals, whales and seabirds as well as visiting penguin rookeries. The company advertises itself as a responsible ecotourism company. This includes aiming to minimise environmental impact on the region, contributing to the local community financially and through employment, only taking small groups, being culturally sensitive to the local people and contributing to relevant conservation programs.

An example of one of their tours is the Antarctic Explorer. This is an 11 day tour which commences at the southern tip of Chile. The tour takes 2 days to cross the Drake Passage before arriving on the Antarctic Peninsula, where tourists get to view the seabirds and have their first view of the giant icebergs. Four days are spent on the Peninsula where the tour group explore penguin and seal breeding colonies, as well as natural features such as ice caves and volcano craters. Tourists are also given the opportunity to camp on the ice if the weather conditions are suitable. The tour then takes another two days travelling back to Chili via Cape Horn.


Conservation groups and researchers are concerned with the increased number of tourist operators bringing visitors to Antarctica. In the 2007/08 season, approximately 46, 069 tourists visited the region. Conservation groups have called for a cap on the number of visitors allowed. This is due to the negative impact they are having on the region such as damage to moss beds, disturbing wildlife such as penguins, historically taking souvenirs and deposition of waste and rubbish from ships and infrequent oil spills during the grounding of ships. In response to this concern, tourism operators are more heavily regulated and these impacts have been reduced



  • People with a passion for adventure activities and travel
  • Anyone seeking to work in adventure tourism or start an adventure tourism business
  • People working in support of the adventure tourism industry (eg. camping equipment suppliers, teachers, writers, etc)
  • Anyone working in adventure tourism or related industries (eg. Leisure industry, camping, fishing, hunting, etc)
  • Professional development for travel agents, tour operators, tour guides, travel entrepeneurs
  • Students of tourism and hospitality



Meet some of our academics

Dr. Gareth PearceVeterinary scientist and surgeon with expertise in agriculture and environmental science, with over 25 years of experience in teaching and research in agriculture, veterinary medicine, wildlife ecology and conservation in the UK, Australia and New Zealand. Post-graduate qualifications in Education, Wildlife Conservation Medicine, Aquatic Veterinary Studies and Wildlife Biology & Conservation. Gareth has a B.Sc.(Hons), B.V.Sc., M.A., M.Vet.S,. PhD, Grad. Cert. Ed.(HE), Post-Grad.Cert. Aq.Vet.Sc., Post-Grad. Cert. WLBio&Cons., Dipl. ECPHM, MRCVS.
Tracey JonesWidely published author, Psychologist, Manager and Lecturer. Over 10 years working with ACS and 25 years of industry experience. Qualifications include: B.Sc. (Hons) (Psychology), M.Soc.Sc (social work), Dip. SW (social work), PGCE (Education), PGD (Learning Disability Studies).
Marius Erasmus Subsequent to completing a BSc (Agric) degree in animal science, Marius completed an honours degree in wildlife management, and a masters degree in production animal physiology. Following the Masters degree, he has worked for 9 years in the UK, and South Africa in wildlife management, dairy, beef and poultry farming.

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