The European cultural tourists traveling to Vietnam are,

The
research will be divided into five chapters. The first chapter will provide
general information the case study, what question it rises, and how it is
delimited in time and space. The second chapter will include the discussion of
the literature review discussing the relevant themes, typologies, and theory
relating to the research question. Followed by the methodology chapter, which
will explain the study methods the researcher has used. The findings of both
interviews and questionnaires will be presented in chapter four alongside the
discussion of the results. Finally, chapter five will be the concluding chapter
giving recommendations to both academics and the Vietnamese tourism industry.

The
key theoretical concepts will be used in this research are cultural tourism,
cultural motivator, and cultural tourist typologies. Firstly, cultural tourism
is a key concept of the research to distinguish cultural tourists with other
types of tourists. The World Tourism Organization (WTO) defines cultural
tourism as “movements of persons essentially for cultural motivations such as
study tours, performing arts and cultural tours, travel to festivals, and other
events, visit to sites and monuments, travel to study nature, folklore or art,
and pilgrimages” (WTO 1985: 6). Secondly, the understanding of the cultural
motivator concept allows the researcher effectively conduct relevant the
questionnaires, analyze and compare the results of what the motivations of
European cultural tourists traveling to Vietnam are, and what motivations can
be added to the existing concept. According to Ivanovic (2008) the main
motivation behind cultural tourism is the need to escape from typical routine
with something that is unique and unusual from everyday life. Sidonia and
Cristina, (2013) suggested that decisions to travel for culture can also be
affected by family, however, motivations such as desire to improve their own
knowledge or to discover and immerse themselves into different cultures also
holds an important role to cultural tourists. The third important concept will
be used to conduct the research is cultural tourist typologies. Determining
different types of cultural tourists will aid the researcher in finding
specific motivations of European cultural tourists to travel to Vietnam. Mckercher
and du Cros (2003) defined five types of cultural tourists ranging from
purposeful cultural tourist to incidental tourist (See figure). Definitions of these types of
tourists are needed to examine the researcher’s respondents. The figure is
based on deep or shallow experience and low to high in motivation to visit a
cultural tourist attraction. Mckercher and du Cros (2003: 46) also mentioned
that cultural tourism is not defined by one motive, “different people will
engage with cultural tourism at different levels, depending on level of
knowledge, number and type of travel partners, own interests, etc.”

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Figure
– Cultural tourist typology – Source: Mckercher and du Cros (2003)

Despite
challenges posed in these theories, typologies are important in first finding
what type of European cultural travelers will be. These tourist typologies can
also give an insight into what motivates European tourists to travel to
unfamiliar country like Vietnam.

To
answer to the research question, I will analyze the official materials and data
from the various kinds of source, conduct questionnaires and interviews to
European cultural tourists at cultural heritage sites in Vietnam, focusing on
popular sites such as Hue Complex of Monuments, Hoi An Ancient Town, and Thang
Long Imperial Citadel. Primary research and secondary research will be used.
Primary research involves data that is collected first hand and therefore is
the collection of original data. In secondary research, however, there is no
new data but draws on data obtained from other existing sources (Naoum, 2013;
Clark et al., 1998). The researcher uses both primary research and secondary
research because primary research is easy to obtain by the researcher due to
personal contacts and the researcher has full control over the questions asked
to participants, making it much more specific and in-depth than secondary data
(Hox and Boeije, 2005). In case of answering the questions related to the
motivations, experiences, expectations and recommendations like in this research,
the primary research method even plays a more important role.

While the
implementation of questionnaire method belongs to quantitative research, the
interview method belongs to qualitative research. Firstly, quantitative
research is described as a means for testing objective theories by examining
the relationship among variables. This method is mainly used to investigate a
large number of people and gain statistical data with descriptive results
(Labaree, 2009; Muijs, 2011). Therefore, quantitative methods will be used and
analyzed in this study to provide a better understanding of a larger group of
participants with mutual experiences or motivations to then formulate the
methods for qualitative methods. Questionnaires will be chosen as a primary research
method to provide a simple basis of statistical analysis on motivations of
European tourists travel to Vietnam for culture. Secondly, the qualitative
method will be used. From these questionnaires, the qualitative research will
be prepared in the form of in depth semi-structured interviews. Qualitative
research is a valuable method in understanding what people think, believe and
understand about a certain subject and enables the researcher to probe on
certain questions to consider why, not just what (Mark, 1996). The best option
for the researcher is to use semi-structured interviews since they are
classified as specified questions that will allow more probing to seek
clarification, elaboration, provide more latitude than structured interview and
combine the flexibility of an unstructured interview but can relate to key
concepts (Finn, Elliott-White, and Walton, 2000).

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