GEOGRAPHICAL RESEARCH ›› 2010, Vol. 29 ›› Issue (2): 291-302.doi: 10.11821/yj2010020012

• Culture and Tourism • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Research on temporal and spatial distribution pattern of Taiwan tourists and its evolution in mainland China

LUO Pei-cong   

  1. College of Geographical Sciences &|Tourism, Fujian Normal University, Fuzhou 350007, China
  • Received:2009-08-29 Revised:2009-12-10 Online:2010-02-20 Published:2010-02-20


The inbound tourism market in mainland China can be divided into two parts. One is overseas Chinese and compatriots from Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan; the other is foreigners (including the overseas Chinese who have foreign nationalities). With the strengthening communication across the Taiwan strait, Taiwan tourists will play an increasingly important role in mainland China tourism market. The author analyses the data of tourism market (1998~2008) of different provinces (cities, districts) in mainland China, using the methods of geographic analysis, indexes of seasonal intensity, seasonal variation, geographic concentration, dynamical degree, and GIS to analyse the spatial and temporal distribution patterns of tourists and its evolution. (1) Viewing from time dimension, the change in the number of tourists from Taiwan Island to the mainland during the year is not obvious. The peak seasons are mainly February, April, July, and October, and the off-peak seasons are mainly January, March, June, September, December and other months. The yearly change can be described as a clear "double M" shaped curve, and this "Double M" shaped curve become more and more obvious over time (except the year 2003). The number of tourists from Taiwan to mainland China is increasing in a wave-shape type, and its share number of inbound tourists in mainland China increased from 1.38% in 1988 to 3.37% in 2008. Tourism development is in line with general economic development cycle, and there are Kitchin cycle, Juglar cycle, and Kuznets cycle. (2) Viewing from the spatial distribution, the overall number of tourists from Taiwan was mainly concentrated in the east instead of the middle and west China, covering 60%~70%. Spatial patterns characterized by the "W"-shaped type tended to be the "U"-shaped type. The geographic concentration of tourists from Taiwan is consolidated, and the difference among the provinces is gradually expanding, and the east-oriented trend remains. Provinces with the changing rate in the number of tourists from Taiwan above the national average (20.01%) are mainly in the eastern coastal zone, northeast region, central region and Tibet. Tibet had the maximum changing rate, which is 270.66%. This study is practical and significant in guiding and promoting the tourism development between Taiwan and mainland China, especially in tourism planning, tourism products upgrading tourism marketing and tourism management services, and so on.

Key words: inbound tourism, Taiwan tourists, spatial and temporal distribution, pattern evolution