In recent years, there has been increasing interest in and attention drawn to the Nordic region, resulting in what Booth (2014) calls the ‘nordic wave’ phenomenon. A number of the Nordic countries, particularly Iceland, have experienced a boom in tourism, partly a result of global attention being drawn to the island due to recent volcanic activity, as well as what has been called the ‘Game of Thrones effect’, as fans of the popular tv series have made filming locations some of their top travel destinations. The newly emerged genre of crime literature and tv drama known as ‘nordic noir’ has also directed attention to the Scandinavian culture. Yet, despite this increasing interest, there is a lack of travel literature on the small, remote island chains of the Nordic countries, which number literally in the thousands.
Archipelagos remain relatively understudied in both academic and travel research, and studies on travel blogs are few and still emerging (Banyai & Glover, 2012), while the examination of small islands has remained focused on mainstream tourism. While many small island communities have a high level of dependence on tourism, this has not traditionally been the case for cold water locations (Baum, Hagen-Grant, Jolliffe, Lambert, & Sigurjonsson, 2000). The recent boost in tourism to the Nordic countries has resulted in a need to re-envision how small island destinations are marketed.
This research will explore through narrative analysis the role of travel blogs in promoting and marketing tourism to the nordic islands, and highlight the importance of tourism for economic development of small islands in general.