It is pointed out that the conceptual basis for the shaping of Soviet recreation geography was provided by the logical-graphical model of a territorial recreation system as developed in the early 1970s. We emphasize that the fundamentally novel concepts of the functioning and development of the territorial recreation system built upon the adaptive and synergic research approaches began emerging and evolving in the Soviet Union during the 1980s. At a later time, this greatly enhanced the understanding of the mechanisms of market competition in the sphere of tourism business evolving in the country. The findings obtained in this study are in good agreement with internationally recognized achievements of other countries in the realm of tourism geography, more specifically in the study of cross-cultural interactions in terms of the home–destination and guest–host models. It is confirmed that the increasing current importance of economic synergy is attendant by a growth of research interest in the ethnopsychological aspects of tourism. A rationale is given to the sustainability criteria of recreation-geographical processes from the perspective of the problems of preserving the uniqueness of tourist destinations and ensuring the progressive dynamics of their main components: natural environment, population, economy, culture, and self-management bodies.Keywords: tourism geography, tourismology, territorial recreation system, cluster, destination, aboriginal inhabitant.