“Young faces in old places”: Perceptions of young cultural visitors for the archaeological site of Delphi
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The purpose of this paper is to identify young cultural visitors’ perceptions towards culture and cultural heritage destinations. This study, based on a survey conducted in the archaeological site of Delphi in Greece, examines young cultural visitors’ perceptions by identifying their perceived importance for a series of destination attributes. Findings reveal the important characteristics of cultural heritage sites for young travelers. Emphasis needs to be given on the following four influential factors of a cultural heritage site: organization and facilities, learning and experience, operation and accessibility, and place and promotion. Tourism authorities ought to focus upon young people and understand their needs in order to attract them to cultural destinations providing positive experience/s. This study is a unique attempt to analyze the perceptions of young people in cultural destinations and is limited to only one cultural heritage site, Delphi. Further, research in other sites examining younger ages and their differences would provide significant information about this unexplored market in cultural sites. This paper examines that misconception about culture concerning only older age-groups needs a new way of thinking that takes into consideration young visitors as important cultural visitors. By ignoring their importance, opportunities to maximize value from the sites as well as to operate them in a more sustainable manner are lost. Knowing exactly the perceptions of young people for culture gives insights into their present and future behavior in cultural heritage destinations.