Dear all,

Today, we will express ourselves on… TOURISM. The enclosed article written by Arnold Baker is about “death by tourism: does tourism ruin everything”?Pls have a look on it!


After holidays, this subject will let us think about this summer, beaches, sun, sea, famous monuments, exotic islands, discovery of other cultures, mentality, dishes, holidays with a single bag, suitcases, in couple, with friends or family, with children...

The fact is that more and more people have the opportunity to go on holidays in France or abroad. Only the kind of holiday changes from one person to another. Camp sites (camping), guest houses (chambres d’hotes), hotels with 2 or more stars, cottages or in a single/double-room in your friend’s house, all depends what kind of holidays is suitable for you.

Let us have a look first on the vocabulary of the article:

-          ruined: adjective which means to be damaged for a building, a monument, to fall in ruins (en ruine)

-          chiselled: adjective meaning something sculptured like by a pair of scissors

-          to carve: to sculpture – sculpter

-          BC means Before Christ

-          a tramp is a walk, a promenade

-          to wear away: to use, to efface

-          sandstone: grès

-          scratch: to write, engrave – graver

-          treasured: the most recognized, famous – prisé

-          barely: just, hardly, scarcely – à peine, juste

-          to take off: to increase, to have success

-          shore: coastline, coastal region – littoral

-          to swell: to increase, to go up

-          cable car: it is a small cabine that people can take to go at the opposite of a mountain or on top of a hill. We can find it on ski resort, in Le Havre or in Montmartre. – In French: funiculaire, téléphérique

-          wired up: on wire – grillage, monte sur fil de fer

-          ski-runs: on ski resort, you can ski there in accordance with your master of technics – piste de ski

-          to put down: when a lot of people arrive at the same place together, you have the feeling to be invaded – debarquer

-          fumes: the gas coming from silencer (pot d’echappement) of buses, cars – vapeurs/fumees

-          to eat away: to corrode by acid, rust – ronger

-          stonework: masonry, brickwork – maçonnerie

-          to be dosed: to give little by little – administrer une dose

-          whilst: it is the equivalent of “while” – alors que

-          to praise: to speak highly of someone - louer

-          likeness:a ressemblance

-          to spring up: to set up, to raise – eriger, se developper

-          camcorder: a digital video recorder – a camescope

-          to whir: a small noise related to appliance; purring, hum - ronronnement

-          to broaden: to widen out, to grow, to extend - elargir

-          to narrow: to contract, to shrink - retrecir

Well, now let us discuss on this matter:

-          Do you agree with this view of tourism?

-          What are the pros and cons of tourism for a country?

-          What kind of tourism is the most interesting?

-          According to you, how can the governments protect praised sites?

The last sentence of this article is “modern travel narrows the mind” whereas in the past, it was totally the opposite (we can refer to Vasco de Gama or Christopher Colombus who absolutely wanted to discover the world) and some of us still believe that travel broadens the mind.

The fact is that giving the access of tourism and knowledge to everyone is good and legitimate. Nevertheless, we can point out (attirer l’attention de quelqu’un sur quelque chose) all depends on the interest of the travellers on the visited country, its culture, way of thinking, cooking, and how open-minded and tolerant they are.

It is sure that in the scope of the consumption market, travels are also become a “product” or “a package”. That means as we pay for services, we are waiting to get the best conditions in terms of lodging (hebergement), guide, explanations on history, unique landscapes, best services...

You have also two kind of holidays: the farniente that consists in sleeping on the beach, swimming, dancing, chatting up (draguer) and rarely to go out to visit as only disorientation (depaysement) counts. The aim of such holidays are to take a rest (se reposer) and spend a good time.

The second view of tourism is, in my opinion, the most interesting. The purpose is to get acquainted with another culture, talk with natives, exchange and discover the domestic culture thanks to encounters (rencontres) with people.

To answer to the first question “do you agree with this view of tourism?”,we can use the following sentences:

-          I disagree with such a view of tourism because of...

-          I am dead against... means I absolutely disagree with... (etre totalement oppose a)

-          I disapprove of... desapprouver

-          I cannot help thinking... je ne peux m’empecher de penser que

-          But it is not it more a matter of... mais cela n’est pas plus une question de...

Or I agree with ... because

It is up to you on this matter.

* What are the pros and cons of tourism for a country?

This question is about the advantages and drawbacks of massive tourism for a country.

Poor countries or developing countries (en voie de developpement) can turn tourism to advantage (tirer avantage de quelque chose) as local people live thanks to tourism, handmade artcraft (artisanat manuel) during summer time or longer. The economy of such countries are based on tourism so sometimes tour-operators, travel agencies or else lead local people to find means to earn more money and garble reality (denaturer la realite).

For instance, travellers can discover reconstitutions of dances in Apaches’ clan, of small traditional village in Bali with walk-on part (role de figurant) people...

Tourists are partial to (etre friand de) leisure activities (distractions) and travels organizer are aware about this so they do their best to satisfy such a request.

We can also quote the inscriptions or tags on famous sites which are more a question of respect and sense of civic responsability (civisme). Maybe the visitors want to let a sign of their visit and chisel their names on rock and stone for the future. The visited countries have to protect their praised sites to let the future generations be aware about their history and the wealth of humanity.

We can sum up the pros and cons of tourism on this way:

-          advantages: financial ressources, higher level of life for local people, work, discovery of other culture thanks to foreigners in holidays, exchanges, possibility to speak another language or guide visitors, pride to show its own country to visitors...

-          drawbacks: excess of tourists, deterioration of famous sites or environment, set up of buildings which makes lanscapes ugly (enlaidir), commercial profitability (rentabilite) for a few people and not others, lost of genuine way of life and traditions

* What kind of tourism is the most interesting?

In my opinion, I think there is anything more interesting than a total immersion if you have the chance to stay in a country at least a few months. It is the best way to share the real life with natives and learn, feel, try, discover...

If you like discovering a country in a dynamic and comfortable way so the tour is for you. You are taken charge (pris en charge) by a guide and need to respect a strict schedule. You are not alone so you need to improvise with others.

If you like to lead a free and easy life (mener une vie de boheme), just bring your rucksack (sac a dos) and sleeping bag (sac de couchage) and you will certainly have an exciting travel...

All is a question of habits, way of thinking, education, opening to others...

There is not an ideal kind of tourism, all are interesting. All depend on what you are looking for and if the chosen way of travelling is in accordance with your personnality and expectations.

* According to you, how can the governments protect praised sites?

In Peru, the well-know Macchu Pichu site is preserved and a visitors’ quota is fixed so that the site is not over-visited. In this way, it is pleasant to contemplate the panorama and not to be obliged to constantly wait for people to move before taking pictures.

The length of visas is very influential on the duration of staying in a country as you are supposed to go out before a limited date.

A duty (taxe) can also help some countries to restore or preserve some sites. Guardians are maybe the best protectors of praised sites giving, if necessary, fines (amendes) or reprimands.

What do you think about all that? Do you agree with the author? With me?

Let us know your comments if you are sensitive to this topic.

With best wishes,