The importance of developing global as well as local networks between tourism firms and clusters seeking to attain global competitiveness has been increasingly emphasized in previous studies. The aim of this paper is to examine the role of local and global networking in firms of different sizes and of differentiated cluster types (based on specialization and agglomeration) in tourism. This paper differs from previous researches in that it addresses the tourism dimension of the networking literature and employs a quantitative method of analysis based on a firm-level survey. The findings of this paper reveal that there is a positive relation between large firms and the global level of networking. The specialization and agglomeration of firms in a cluster does not determine the level of connectedness, but rather it is the size of the firm in a cluster that determines the level of networking of that cluster. Based on the research findings, the paper explores the necessity of developing networks not only at a local level but also at a global level by emphasizing the defining factors. (c) 2008 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.