Wikivoyage – the free worldwide travel guide that anyone can edit — is a collection of worldwide travel guide wikis in different languages, and now a major 'project' of the Wikimedia Foundation (WMF).
This project has the long-term objective to become a complete and up-to-date worldwide travel guide, the contributions of which come from Wikivoyagers all over the globe. Wikivoyage wants to fulfil the need of travellers to obtain up-to-date information as fast as possible, something that long book-publishing cycles can't seem to meet.
Wikivoyage is – similar to the well-known Wikipedia – carried by the spirit of knowledge exchange, which is so evident for lots of travellers. Travellers meeting during a trip like to exchange information about the places they want to discover or the ones they have already visited. We want to facilitate this knowledge exchange; our Copyleft licence creates the right conditions for you to make your knowledge available to a huge community of interested people.
Wikivoyage was initially created primarily by some German writers of the earlier Wikitravel community (itself founded July 2003 in English as a private enterprise by Evan Prodromou and Michelle Anne Jenkins); after it was was acquired by Internet Brands, Inc., a commercial for-profit American consumer internet company. Internet Brands progressively changed the ethos of the original Wikitravel; with the inclusion of advertising, and lack of technical support and software upgrades, and ultimately the denial of database dumps. The German language Wikivoyage community forked from Wikitravel in 2006, and subsequently in 2007, the Italian Wikivoyage community had also forked from Wikitravel. The Wikivoyage Association (German: Wikivoyage e.V.), created in Germany in 2006 as a non-profit organisation, was set up to host all Wikivoyage wikis. Wikivoyage and Wikitravel wikis continued to co-exist, though the original Wikitravel project lost the core of its productive writers to the newer Wikivoyage; which meant the quality of articles began to diversify, Wikivoyage articles continued to improve professionally and factually, whilst Wikitravel articles deteriorated in quality and accuracy.
Early 2012, members of the Wikivoyage Association suggested a merge with the Wikimedia Foundation (WMF), with discussions taking place across various platforms (Google Groups, Wikitravel, Wikivoyage, and Wikimedia Meta-Wiki). The driving force was to go back to basics of collaborative wiki writing, on a non-profit educational basis, free of advertising; and to gain the extensive and long-established technical support, development, and backup provided by the WMF. The goal would be to import all existing Wikivoyage language wikis, users, admins, and page content onto WMF servers; and also import and merge in any useful content from Wikitravel too (which is allowed under the CC-BY-SA 3.0 Unported license as used by Wikitravel, but which Wikitravel was trying to prevent, and also initiated legal action to prevent). Discussions progressed, and during October 2012, Wikivoyage migrated the content of Wikitravel and Wikivoyage, along with all contributors, to the Wikimedia Foundation. On 10 November 2012, the Wikivoyage project went live (as beta) on Wikimedia servers, and its content pages displayed the Wikimedia Foundation logo. On 15 January 2013, the WMF announced that all existing language versions of Wikivoyage had been formally launched onto Wikimedia servers, and incorporated into the WMF. However, around that time period, the project was still in a transition status, as most images had still to be moved from the former Wikivoyage shared repositories to Wikimedia Commons, and many links had to be fixed by the community. Textual content for all Wikivoyage wikis is made available under an open content free license: the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license (CC-BY-SA 3.0).
- Wikivoyage-Association.org — wiki homepage of Wikivoyage e.V. (de / en-gb)
- Wikitravel editors abandon Internet Brands, join up with Wikipedia — Gyrovague.com; 2012/07/12
- Challenges of merging communities: the case of WikiTravel and WikiVoyage — governance across borders; 2012/07/13
- Wikivoyage Statistics — stats.Wikimedia.org at Wikimedia Statistics
- Wikivoyage database list — at noc.Wikimedia.org; lists the 19 individual sites by language code
- Wikivoyage.org site info — from Alexa.com
- Wikivoyage Interactive Statistics — from Wikistatistics.net (via Archive.org – 2015-10-05)
- wikivoyage-l — Wikivoyage mailing list for discussing technical and community matters by email, at lists.Wikimedia.org
- Wikivoyage on Twitter — initially mainly in German, now almost exclusively in English
- See also
- JAMGuides – a mirror of Wikitravel which uses the JAMWiki engine; after the Wikivoyage merge with the WMF, JAMGuides redirects to Wikivoyage
- OxygenGuide – an independent offline copy of the Wikivoyage travel guide, restyled for smartphones, based on work by all volunteers of Wikivoyage and Wikitravel
As of January 2018, Wikimedia Meta-Wiki indicates that there are 19 Wikivoyage wikis of different languages; tabulated and sorted by creation date, and detailed statistics. It is important to note that individual language versions created before 2013 were forked from Wikitravel; whereas those language versions created during or after 2013 were approved from the Wikimedia Incubator.
German / Deutsch (de) •
1,000+: Greek / Ελληνικά (el) • Spanish / Español (es) • Persian / فارسی (fa) • Finnish / Suomi (fi) • French / Français (fr) • Hebrew / עברית (he) • Italian / Italiano (it) • Dutch / Nederlands (nl) • Polish / Polski (pl) • Portuguese / Português (pt) • Russian / Русский (ru) • Swedish / Svenska (sv) • Vietnamese / Tiếng Việt (vi) • Chinese / 中文 (zh)
100+: Romanian / Română (ro) • Ukrainian / Українська (uk)
10+: Hindi / हिन्दी (hi)