a tourist route that includes visits to various historical sites, places of cultural interest, or natural attractions—an itinerary undertaken for cultural, educational, health, or sports purposes. Tour itineraries may be worked out by tourist agencies and organizations or by the tourists themselves.
In terms of their directional orientation, the various types of itineraries include linear, circular, and radial ones. Itineraries are also distinguished in terms of mode of travel—for example, walking, cycling, automotive means, or water transport; in terms of time of tour operation—year-round, seasonal, or one-time itineraries; and in terms of the different arrangements that may be involved for group and individual itineraries.
Tourists may follow organized, or preplanned, tour routes (on the basis of tourist organization travel vouchers), or they may work out their own independent itineraries. Organized tour routes are specially designed and equipped to offer tourists such services as excursions, tourist centers, and camp sites. In 1975, organized tour routes in the USSR numbered more than 350 on the all-Union level and more than 6,000 local ones. The all-Union tour routes are designed and maintained by the Central Council on Tourism and Excursions of the All-Union Central Council of Trade Unions; the local routes, by republic, krai, and oblast councils on tourism. A special category of itineraries consists of fixed railroad, bus, ship, and airplane routes or some combination of these. More than 4,000 such itineraries were in operation in 1975. Approximately 30 million persons were provided with all-Union and local tour services in 1976.
The most popular tour itineraries are “The Golden Ring” (beginning and ending in Moscow and passing through Zagorsk, Pereslavl’-Zalesskii, Rostov-Iaroslavskii, Yaroslavl, Kostroma, Pies, Ivanovo, Suzdal’, and Vladimir); the Baltic tour (with stops at Vilnius, Kaliningrad, Riga, and Tallinn); the tour of the capitals of the Middle Asian republics (Frunze, Tashkent, Samarkand, Dushanbe, and Ashkhabad); the Carpathian tour (L’vov, Iaremcha, Rakhov, Mukachevo, and Uzhgorod); the tour along the Caucasian coast of the Black Sea (Sukhumi, Novyi Afon, Miussera, and Sochi); the various tours in the mountain areas of the Crimea and the Caucasus, on the Volga (between Moscow and Astrakhan), and on the Enisei (between Krasnoiarsk and Dudinka); and the tours on horseback in the Adygei Autonomous Oblast and the Bashkir ASSR.
Tourists may work out their own itineraries—for example, for a day’s holiday, for a trip of several days’ duration, or to engage in sports activities. Such itineraries are usually organized and arranged with the assistance of tourist clubs or tourist stations or through the offices of physical education groups. As many as 50 million persons go on independent hikes or trips each year. On sports tour routes, difficult hikes of several days’ duration are governed by the rules of sports tourism.
International tour itineraries for Soviet citizens and tour itineraries for foreign tourists in the USSR are arranged by Inturist (an all-Union joint-stock company), by the Central Council on Tourism and Excursions of the All-Union Central Council of Trade Unions, and by the Sputnik Bureau of International Youth Tourism under the general guidance of the Central Board of Foreign Tourism of the Council of Ministers of the USSR.
In other countries, both domestic and international tour itineraries are worked out and arranged by special state or public tourist organizations, by the many private tourist firms, and by such agencies as transportation company affiliates and hotel chain subsidiaries.
IU. A. SHTIURMER