How is it different from other guiding contexts?

Outdoor recreation and adventure tourism are closely related. After all, most adventures involve outdoor activities.

Outdoor recreation is often thought of as the activities people do on their own but it also includes organized activities, either led by a guide or self-guided by the guest with some logistical or planning assistance along the way.

We share a lot with other sectors of the outdoor and adventure industry, including outdoor recreation, outdoor education, environmental education and adventure therapy.

All of these have the power to transform participants. The difference is what we aim to change.

Alberta Parks guided hikes at Crescent Falls
Ice climbing with Girth Hitch Guiding

Interpretation

Interpretation is another sector that is often associated with adventure tourism. Like outdoor recreation, interpretive activities are often part of adventure tourism. The difference is once again one of purpose where interpretation aims to reveal meaning and to enhance the participants’ appreciation for the cultural and natural heritage.

Ecotourism

Another type of tourism that is related to adventure travel is ecotourism. While both share a setting in nature and responsible tourism objectives, the difference is in their purpose with ecotourism being travel for the specific purpose of visiting pristine, fragile and relatively undisturbed natural environments.

Transformative Experiences

Each context has the power to transform the participants. The difference is what we aim to change.

Organization Types

Different types of organizations offer adventure tourism, outdoor recreation and interpretive programs. These include summer camps, schools, government agencies like Parks Canada or Alberta Parks, youth clubs, outdoor clubs and tour companies like us.

Each of these types of organizations has a different purpose driving why they offer their programs. They also have different industry standards and permit requirements to consider.

Our focus is on adventure tourism products offered by tour companies. Guides who work for other types of organizations or in different contexts will need to adapt how they approach the adventures they lead accordingly.