Spatial patterns of tourist mobility are important for tourism management and planning. A large number of traveler-generated content accumulated on the internet provide a unique opportunity for revealing comprehensive spatial patterns of tourist movements. Instead of concentrating on a single city or attraction in previous research, this work investigates the intercity travel flows extracted from the online travel blogs in China from 2012 to 2016. The descriptive statistics of travel flows are first analyzed. The distribution of travel volume is found to satisfy the power-law distribution. Based on the intercity travel flows, a network structure is then constructed to investigate tourism interactions between cities. After four communities and 14 sub-communities being detected from the network, a tourism spatial layout with regional agglomeration effects are recognized. This research concludes that distance is essential in determining tourist movements based on a spatial interaction model. Intercity travel flows decline with distance under a power-law function. These results reveal the spatial patterns of tourist movements at an intercity scale. It will be helpful for arranging tourism resources, predicting tourist flows, and maintaining sustainable tourism.
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