Understanding the heritage experience: a content analysis of online reviews of World Heritage Sites in Istanbul

Gursoy D., AKOVA O., Atsiz O.

JOURNAL OF TOURISM AND CULTURAL CHANGE, vol.20, no.3, pp.311-334, 2022 (SSCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 20 Issue: 3
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/14766825.2021.1937193
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus, International Bibliography of Social Sciences, ABI/INFORM, CAB Abstracts, Hospitality & Tourism Complete, Hospitality & Tourism Index, Sociological abstracts
  • Page Numbers: pp.311-334
  • Keywords: Heritage experience, heritage sites, user-generated content
  • Yozgat Bozok University Affiliated: Yes


This study explores dimensions of heritage tourism experiences utilizing the user-generated content (UGC) on a travel sharing website and offers insight for understanding the factors that can affect the heritage tourists' evaluation of travel experiences at a destination. For this purpose, a content analysis of 5212 heritage experience reviews posted for heritage sites on a UGC travel website, TripAdvisor, is conducted. An analysis of reviews revealed 59 items forming six dimensions that include authenticity, the importance of guides, cultural values, sense of heritage, local hospitality and awe. Theoretical and managerial implications are discussed as well as limitations. Suggestions for further research are provided.