Forget sun and sand — search for your spirit
Monday 08 October 2012
The combined spending of British travellers seeking a religious holiday abroad has topped £2.2bn, new research reveals today.
More than 2.2 million people spent an average of £1,000 on trips seeking spiritual awakening at sites in Israel, India and Malaysia last year.
European religious sites were the most visited with the sanctuary of Our Lady of Lourdes in south-west France topping the list of top-10 locations.
Spring from a grotto at the small market town in the foothills of the Pyrenees is believed by some to possess healing properties. It has a population of around 15,000 but is visited by five million pilgrims and tourists a year.
After Paris, Lourdes has the second highest number of hotels per square kilometre in France.
According to the research by Sainsbury's Travel Insurance, 12 per cent of the total number of religious holidays were made by Londoners and 11 per cent by those in Northern Ireland.
"Whether it is a religious pilgrimage, or simply to see a church or site of architectural interest, millions of Britons are taking faith-orientated holidays," said Jo Nola, of Sainsbury's Travel Insurance.
- 1 'We're not heroes, just tourists': Swedish police officers on holiday stop vicious assault on New York subway
- 2 Black Mass trailer: Johnny Depp might have started making good films again
- 3 Jacob Lescenski and Anthony Martinez: Straight student asks gay friend to High School prom and makes a million Twitter friends
- 4 Buckingham Palace guard who attacked passers-by in 'most most violent piece of CCTV footage' police officer had seen walks free
Top 20 misconceptions people believe are true
Sofyen Belamouadden murder: The inside story of a crime that horrified Britain
'We're not heroes, just tourists': Swedish police officers on holiday stop vicious assault on New York subway
Head transplant: man will be attached to new body in under an hour and aim is immortality, doctor says
Buckingham Palace guard who attacked passers-by in 'most most violent piece of CCTV footage' police officer had seen walks free
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Katie Hopkins on LBC: Listen to caller taking The Sun columnist to task over migrant comments
Migrant boat disaster: Ukip candidate mocks victims in sickening Twitter post
Nigel Farage wants the BBC to stop making programmes like Doctor Who, Strictly Come Dancing, and Top Gear
Global warming: Scientists say temperatures could rise by 6C by 2100 and call for action ahead of UN meeting in Paris
General Election 2015: Britain would become a 'communist dictatorship' under Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon, claims wife of Michael Gove
Voluntary: Cancer Research UK: We’re looking for someone to support our award ...
£70000 - £90000 per annum + bonus + car allowance + benefits: Ashdown Group: H...
£28000 - £32000 per annum + Excellent benefits: Ashdown Group: Application Sup...
£28000 - £32000 per annum + Excellent benefits: Ashdown Group: Systems Analyst...