Worldwide cultural developments have increasingly secularized the concept and practices of religion—and with that, also of religious tourism. For instance, many aspects of pious pilgrimage and of secular tourism have converged, and new or mixed forms, such as spiritual tourism, have been embraced. Religious tourism has grown into a key sector of the worldwide tourism market, which has implications for guests, hosts, stakeholders, and managers of religious sites as well as for the economies and environments of destinations.

Between the extremes of the sacred and the secular, visitors to religious sites differ in needs and actions: Religious sites have to manage high inflows of visitors and reconcile their demands, and host communities have to negotiate the understanding and image of their site and of themselves. The ...

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