How To Create A Self Guided Tour: Your Guide to Creating an Amazing Tour Experience

Are you looking for a way to give your visitors an engaging, memorable experience? Self-guided tours offer visitors the opportunity to explore your destination at their own pace, with audiovisual guidance available at the tap of a button.

Self-guided tours are great for visitors of all ages and abilities, helping you provide visitors with an informative and engaging experience.

 Self guided tour app on a bicycle handlebar

They are also a useful tool for raising visitor numbers during less busy seasons or days. Additionally, self-guided tours can help reduce frustrations over unclear direction signs or navigating a printed map.

With these benefits in mind, read on to find out more about how you can create a self-guided tour and what you should keep in mind when creating your own self-guided tour.

What is a Self-Guided Tour?

A self-guided tour is an experience designed for visitors to take at their own pace, with guidance available via audio or visual cues and narration.

Self-guided tours are a great way to provide visitors with an informative and engaging experience.

They are particularly useful for locations with complex navigation, such as towns and trails, that typically would require a human guide to navigate and narrate, but that most people don’t have the time to fully explore alone.

Young lady following a self guided tour app in a US city

With a self-guided tour, visitors can explore at their own pace without feeling like they are holding up other visitors who are in a rush to see everything.

How do Self-Guided Tours Work?

Visitors to your site should be able to access the self-guided tour using their personal digital device: aka smartphone.

Visitors should be able to access the tour via as quickly as possible using QR codes or links and such information should be available offline.

Self-guided tour buttons or links are often accompanied by a visual or audio prompt such as a recording of you speaking about the site or images of the site with captions.

Once the visitor has accessed the tour information, they will be able to tap a button or link at any time to resume the tour at their current location.

Visitors can also use a button or link to skip to a different location on the tour if they wish to detour and explore another part of their location.

Are Self-Guided Tours Right for Your Business?

Self-guided tours can be a great asset for outdoor and active travel businesses that currently offer guided tours, as a way to reduce the tour sticker price by removing guide fees and to enable faster customer fulfillment.

As I mentioned, self-guided tours are particularly useful for locations with complex navigation, such as towns and trails, that typically would require a human guide to navigate and narrate.

With a self-guided tour, visitors can explore at their own pace without feeling like they are holding up other visitors who are in a rush to see everything.

Self-guided tours are also great for visitors of all ages and abilities. You can tailor the tour to match the pace that each visitor prefers.

Mature couple using a self guided tour app to navigate outdoors

Self-guided tours can also be an effective way to stabilize visitor numbers during less busy seasons or days, when it doesn't make sense to have human guides on payroll.

During peak season when visitor numbers are high and resources are strained, self-guided tours can be a helpful tool to reduce frustrations over guide availability, and enable business owners to process more customers faster, and with better service.

Things to Consider When Creating a Self-Guided Tour

Before you begin creating your self-guided tour, you’ll want to decide what the theme is: sightseeing, food, nature, etc.

Make sure you have the content ready to go: routes, points of interest and tour script. You’ll want to have all of this material ready before you start to put your tour together.

Cyclist tapping on phone screen a self guided bike tour

You can also include images and captions to further explain the information that you’re sharing on your self-guided tour.

Additionally, you’ll want to make sure that it's easy for visitors to access the self-guided tour. You can use hyperlinks or printed QR codes for this purpose.

How to create Your Own Self-Guided Tour

Before you get started with creating your self-guided tour, you’ll want to think about a few key factors. You’ll want to be sure to consider the theme, length of your tour and the pacing of your tour.

Tour Theme

The theme of your tour is what holds it all together. For example, you might have costal tours, wine or beer tasting tours, art or sighseeing tours, etc.

Tour Length

The length of the tour is essentially a function of the duration, or your visitor's available time.

Tour Pace

The pacing of your tour will depend on the type of site you have and the type of information you plan to share.

For example, if you operate in a hilly region, you may need to reduce the legth of the route or reduce the number of points of interest, since most people don’t have the time to fully explore your site in one visit.

Recap

A self-guided tour is an experience designed for visitors to take at their own pace, with guidance available via audiovisual narration and navigation.

Self-guided tours are a great way to provide visitors with an informative and engaging experience. They are particularly useful for destinations where navigation is complicated and marking paper maps is impractical.

With a self-guided tour, visitors can explore at their own pace without feeling like they are holding up other visitors who are in a rush to see everything. Self-guided tours are also great for visitors of various ages and physical abilities.

You can design your tours to match the style and pace that each visitor prefers. Before you get started with creating your self-guided tour, you’ll want to think about a few key factors. You’ll want to be sure to consider the theme, length and pacing of your tour.

The pacing of your tour will depend on the type of site you operate from and the type of route you plan to offer. If you are looking for help putting together self-guided tours, get in touch!

2 comentários

  • Agreed, I always go for self-guided tours as I like to explore things at my own pace. Even when we went on a cruise I preferred to skip the guides and went on exploring the cities by myself but that meant I’ve lost a lot of the good stuff as I had no idea what I was doing.

    Logan
  • This is something I thought about doing for a while now. I switched to working from home lately aka I have a ton of free time on my hands. I thought this would be a great side hustle, pairing two of my hobbies, traveling and documenting stuff.

    Ella

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