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Spiritual tourism. Where and how to discover oneself?


Interesting and unique types of tourism are developing in our time. Travelers are increasingly attracted to unusual routes related to exoticism, adventures, active leisure, creativity, the world of cinema, charity, and esotericism. One of these interesting types of tourism is spiritual tourism and self-discovery, which we will discuss today.

The goal of spiritual tourism

Spiritual tourism involves not just a temporary change in the usual way of life, but a review of global values and life concept, a change in the inner state, achieving harmony, peace, tranquility, and meaning of life.

Types of spiritual tourism


Pilgrimage is a journey of believers to geographic locations and relics that hold sacred significance in a particular religion. A person who undertakes such a journey is called a pilgrim.

Pilgrimage in Christianity is a journey to Holy Land and other places of sacred significance for the faith with the purpose of worship and prayer. The Christian tradition is based on the believers' desire to pay homage to places and relics associated with Christ, the apostles, the Virgin Mary, to pray before miraculous icons, to immerse themselves in the sacred waters of the Jordan River and holy springs; repentant pilgrimages are undertaken as a sign of remorse for sins.

Hajj – a pilgrimage to Mecca and Medina, undertaken by Muslims to perform the prescribed rituals there.

Kora – in Hinduism and Buddhism, a ritual circumambulation around a sacred shrine. For Hindus, it involves visiting Prayagraj and Varanasi (Benares, India. The latter is also visited by Jains).

Buddhists have pilgrimage sites in India, Japanese and Shinto Buddhists have visits to Nara, Tibetan Buddhists have visits to Lhasa (Tibet). There are four main pilgrimage sites in Buddhism: Lumbini (Nepal), the birthplace of the Buddha, Bodhgaya (the place of enlightenment), Sarnath (the place of the first sermon), located in the suburbs of Varanasi, and Kushinagar (the place of the Buddha's departure to paranirvana), it is located in the north of the country, in the state of Uttar Pradesh.


In Judaism of the period of the First and Second Temples, three annual pilgrimage festivals (Passover, Shavuot, Sukkot) involved pilgrimage to the Temple.

Pilgrimage for Baha'is involves visiting the sacred sites of Haifa and Akko.

This includes architecture, iconography, and features of worship practices in various monasteries. It also includes pious customs and traditions, the lives of saints, and more broadly, the history of our Church.

The main focus of religious tourism is to discover the history of holy places, the lives of saints, architecture, and church art. This type of tourism is part of the cult of pilgrimage, where the main focus is on prayer, worship, and religious devotion to holy sites.

Parral, Mexico

The desire to go on pilgrimages is an outward manifestation of the search for God. Monasteries and temples are places of special Divine presence. Another important spiritual aspect is that during pilgrimage trips, believers come into contact with the relics of saints.

Orthodox people in Russia with a special reverence visit the Holy Trinity St. Sergius Lavra, the city of Kirillov, the village of Diveevo, the Solovetsky Archipelago, the Holy Entrance Optina Pustyn, the island of Valaam, the island of Patmos, and many other Christian shrines. There are a huge number of places for pilgrimage all over the world.

Basilique Notre Dame de Montréal, Montréal, Canada

In Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Hinduism, and Buddhism, there are pilgrims who annually travel to holy places, temples, and monasteries from different parts of the world. The most important places include such famous sites as the Shwedagon Pagoda in Myanmar, the Silver Pagoda in Cambodia, sacred pagodas in Thailand, as well as the pilgrimage to Mount Athos in Greece and the Holy Land of Israel. The main holy site in Jerusalem is the Western Wall (Waiting Wall), while for Muslims worldwide, Mecca is the main city of Islam in Saudi Arabia.

Esoteric tourism

Esoteric tourism is suitable for people interested in esotericism and spiritual practices.

Esotericism is a collection of knowledge and information that is inaccessible to the uninitiated, unenlightened people in mystical teachings. It involves special ways of perceiving reality that have a secret content and are expressed through 'psycho-spiritual practices.'

Esoteric travelers are most drawn to India and Thailand. Self-discovery is the goal of esoteric tourism, aimed at understanding oneself, changing life concepts, and seeking spiritual balance.

With the help of sacred knowledge and spiritual practices, which are an integral part of such tours, seekers get a unique opportunity to discover their inner world, find meaning in life, and see reality through different eyes.

Mardi Himal Base Camp, Lumle, Nepal

Places for esoteric tourism are considered to be areas where energy is concentrated and has a beneficial effect on a person's energetic, spiritual, and physical health, at least according to esoteric beliefs. Visiting such places can also fill a person with spiritual strength and open access to secret ancient knowledge.

In such tours, meditation, chanting of mantras, practicing yoga and qigong are common. Seekers also turn to techniques such as channeling, astral projection, stopping inner dialogue, contemplation, and many other methods of self-discovery. Meetings with magicians, healers, spiritual teachers and mentors, prophets, shamans, and other practitioners of esoteric cults are also common.

Where to find Power Places

As the Earth has a rich history dating back millions of years, it holds the remnants of knowledge from the oldest civilizations scattered throughout the world. The most popular and powerful places for esoteric tourism are:

Thailand with its numerous Buddhist temples, amazing nature, and incredible places for finding the meaning of existence

Japan - the great Ise Shrine, the Enryaku-ji monastery complex, Mount Kurama

China - Lake Xihu, Hangzhou city, Mount Huangshan

Tibet - Lhasa, Mount Kailash, Garuda Valley and a huge number of beautiful incredible places

Nepal with Kathmandu Valley, Manakamana Temple, Padmasambhava Cave and majestic mountains

India is incredibly rich in power places, everyone knows the Himalayas

Places of power can be found in Russia as well, for example, Lake Baikal attracts esoteric tourists from all over the world with its power, and Arkaim in the Chelyabinsk region is almost the main natural place of power, located at the site of a natural tectonic fault in the earth's crust.

What is the Camino de Santiago?

The Camino de Santiago, or the Way of Saint James, is one of the most popular routes for religious pilgrimage in Europe. According to legend, the remains of Saint James are located in the Spanish city of Santiago de Compostela. The most important section of the route starts in the south of France, crosses the Pyrenees, and goes through the passes of Roncesvalles or Somport. The main road in Spain, from Pamplona to Santiago de Compostela, is called the 'French Way of the Kings.'

The average time to complete the route is 35 days, during which one will have to cover 900 kilometers.

This path teaches self-reliance and responsibility, understanding of true values. During the long walks, a reboot or even a rebirth takes place. Moreover, it is an excellent opportunity to enjoy the views and nature, as well as to communicate with people and learn about different cultures.

Spiritual tourism is chosen by people who not only want to visit religious monuments and amazing places of our planet but also absorb a particle of the energy of the Earth and the Universe, touch ancient knowledge, gain awareness and harmony in life.


March 21, 2024 04:28 pm



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