Byron Bay: an alternative health and wellness destination
Wray, M, Laing, J & Voigt, C 2010, 'Byron Bay: an alternative health and wellness destination', Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Management, vol. 17, no. 1, pp. 158-166.
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Located on the east coast of Australia, Byron Bay is well recognised as a popular tourism and wellness destination that offers an eclectic mix of ‘alternate’ services and businesses that provide health and wellbeing experiences including alternative ‘new-age’ shops, ‘spiritual’ services such as meditation and yoga classes, alternative medicine and holistic healing centres. This article traces the development of wellness tourism products and experiences in the destination and explores the implicit link to wellness and spiritual values that underpin the local community. This case study research forms part of a Sustainable Tourism Cooperative Research Centre project undertaken in 2009 that investigates the demand and supply of wellness and medical tourism in Australia. A key outcome of this research was to identify factors that have contributed to establishing Byron Bay as an ‘alternate’ wellness tourism destination for domestic and international visitors. In addition, barriers and opportunities for further development in health and well tourism are identified.