“Tourism and Rural Development” celebrates the sector’s unique ability to drive economic development and provide opportunities outside of big cities, including in those communities that would otherwise be left behind. World Tourism Day 2020 also highlights the important role tourism plays in preserving and promoting culture and heritage all around the world.

Monday 28 September 2020 | 10:00 AM (GMT-3) -  3:00 PM (UTC +1)


World Tourism Day

Tourism helps rural communities hold onto their unique natural and cultural heritage, supporting conservation projects, including those safeguarding endangered species, lost traditions or flavours.

Zurab Pololikashvili,
UNWTO Secretary-General

Zurab Pololikashvili, UNWTO Secretary-General

Official Messages

For many rural communities, tourism means opportunity. It provides jobs and economic empowerment, including for women and youth. Tourism gives rural communities the ability to protect and promote their natural surroundings, as well as their culture and heritage. In doing so, it allows tourists to enjoy unique experiences. In 2020, World Tourism Day celebrates the sector's importance for those communities that would otherwise be left behind.

Official Messages 

Tourism and Rural Development

UNWTO has designated 2020 as the Year of Tourism and Rural Development. This Year is an opportunity to promote the potential of tourism to create jobs and opportunities. It can also advance inclusion and highlight the unique role tourism can play in preserving and promoting natural and cultural heritage and curbing urban migration.

Technical Note World Tourism Day 2020 
Tourism and Rural Development: Technical Note
 Meet the WTD 2020 hosts

Meet the WTD 2020 Hosts

For the first time in the history of World Tourism Day, the 2020 official celebration will be hosted by a group of countries and not a single UNWTO Member State. The cross-border cooperation of the MERCOSUR Member States (Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay, plus Chile, Member Associate) reflects the current need for international solidarity and cooperation. This is especially true for tourism, working together towards a common goal.

Meet the WTD 2020 hosts  

Recommendations Rural Development

The UNWTO Recommendations on Tourism and Rural Development aim to support governments at various levels, as well as the private sector and the international community in developing tourism in rural territories in a way that contributes to inclusive, sustainable and resilient development.

 Recommendations Rural Development
Recommendations Rural Development


Find everything you need to celebrate World Tourism Day, including social media images, graphics and logos

Trello UNWTO - World Tourism Day 2020 

World Tourism Day 2020 Events

Events by the global tourism community on the occasion of World Tourism Day 2020.

All Events

* The designations employed in this section of the website do not imply the expression of any opinions whatsoever on the part of the Secretariat of the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area, or of its authorities or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries.