New Age in Norway - Ingvild Sælid Gilhus

New Age in Norway - Ingvild Sælid Gilhus

Spiritual Tourism

New Age in Norway - Ingvild Sælid Gilhus

Torunn Selberg [+-]
University of Bergen
Torunn Selberg, folklorist, is professor in Cultural Studies, department of Archaeology, History, Cultural Studies and Religion, University of Bergen. Her research interests revolve around folk religion, magic, ritualization, tourism, and cultural landscapes. Selberg is a prominent scholar of new religions in contemporary society and has written numerous chronicles, articles and books focusing on contemporary religious phenomena, pilgrimage, festivals and place construction.


Travelling and a sacred geography have a large place within alternative spirituality. Holy places told to contain old and superior wisdoms is of importance to the seeking religious person. Of interest is however that spiritual places and seeking also has become part of more mainstream tourism. ”Aller travel” – a traditional tourism company offer – among trips to ”The heart of Toscana”, Football weekend in London”, trips to the Christian city of Rome, and a tour to Copenhagen where the part-takers can learn how to use their 6th sense; taught by a spiritual specialist. Tourism is the world’s largest industry and it is becoming more and more segmented. New ideas and new narratives must be tied to tourist destinations. In this paper I will investigate how spiritual tourism is becoming an aspect also with tourism in general, taking as a point of departure that ideas from alternative spirituality get an increasing place in the mainstream culture, and that the borders between the sacred and profane becomes steadily more vague. The idea is to investigate how this is being formed and expressed within contemporary tourism.

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Selberg, Torunn. Spiritual Tourism. New Age in Norway. Equinox eBooks Publishing, United Kingdom. p. 79-95 Mar 2017. ISBN 9781781794173. Date accessed: 25 Jun 2024 doi: 10.1558/equinox.28880. Mar 2017

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