Holocaust tourism: education or exploitation?


  • Amanda Dawson Technological University of the Shannon
  • Sinéad O'Leary Technological University of the Shannon
  • Noelle O'Connor Technological University of the Shannon




Berlin, dark tourism, education, exploitation, Holocaust tourism


The purpose of this research study is to investigate the ethics of holocaust tourism as a niche market which is becoming very commercialised due to the growing demand for such activities at certain locations and to examine the motivating factors for tourists visiting these destinations. Holocaust sites, a number of which were commissioned for memorial after the liberation during World War II to memorialise those lost and act as an educational resource. The main aim of this research is to explore whether holocaust tourism can be seen as education or exploitation. This will be investigated through a site visit to a holocaust tourism destination in Germany (Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, Berlin) and a survey to identify those who engage in holocaust tourism, their motivations for doing so, and the outcome of their visits. Finally, this research study will provide results on the ethics of holocaust tourism and its educational value through a review of the academic research as well as the opinions of those who have or will engage in holocaust tourism. One of the main conclusions is that both primary participants and secondary authors spoke of how when visiting these sites, you create a connection to the destination and the sense of what occurred at the location is undeniable.


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How to Cite

Dawson, A. ., O’Leary , S., & O’Connor, N. (2022). Holocaust tourism: education or exploitation?. Tourism and Heritage Journal, 4, 37–52. https://doi.org/10.1344/THJ.2022.4.3