We regularly hear the phrase overtourism. But, curiously, Intrepid Travel’s second annual Adventure Travel Index released today suggests some countries are actually suffering from undertourism.

To produce their second annual Adventure Travel Index, Intrepid Travel crunched the numbers and quizzed the population to find out the true meaning of adventure travel.

Intrepid believes undertourism will be the new buzzword in travel, as lesser visited countries become the new focus for sustainable travel.


For instance, Papua New Guinea has the lowest tourism density in the index, followed by remote Tajikistan and Kenya.

Other notable undertourism destinations include Iran, Uzbekistan and even Indonesia.

Professor at The Center for Tourism Research, Wakayama University, Japan Joseph Cheer explains that many of these countries stand to benefit from sustainable tourism done right.

The index also addresses overtourism in Japan, one of Australia’s hottest destinations in 2019 with Intrepid witnessing a 66% increase in travellers visiting Japan in 2018 compared to the previous year.


CEO of Intrepid Travel James Thornton said overall, the findings show that travellers are exploring the world with more openness and curiosity than ever before.

Travel trends pinpointed include families becoming more adventurous, exploring countries such as India, Morocco and Egypt.

Solo travel is becoming a rite of passage, with a continued increase in people travelling alone with the company and support of a small group.

When it comes to millennials, the gram impacts IRL. A survey of 1,000 adults revealed a third of all 18 to 24-year-olds always consider what social media content they will post from a holiday when booking a trip.

We are also placing more value on experiences and travelling in pursuit of better health and wellness. Intrepid’s active trips few by 20% in the first quarter of this year compared to the same time last year.

The full Index can be viewed here.

Had you ever considered undertourism before?