What To Do About Day-tripper Tourism Crowds in Historic Places
Cultural Heritage sites facing Hit-and-Run Tourism need to elaborate targeted strategies in order to balance tourism and heritage conservation, to define limits or find solutions in order to protect natural and cultural heritage and to mitigate negative impacts. In a paper by Engelbert Ruoss and Loredana Alfarè of the Global Regions Initiative, nine heritage sites in South East Europe are studied, including typical Hit-and-Run destinations such as Venice (I), Dubrovnik (HR), Hallstatt (A) and Aquileia (I), allowing four different types of Hit-and-Run sites to be distinguished. Continue reading
Geotourism in 2013 on NG NewsWatch
Check out the National Geographic NewsWatch roundup of new geotourism goings-on for 2013.
The most sweeping event has been the San Pedro Sula Declaration on Sept 6, 2013 by tourism ministers of the Organization of American States that geotourism is now the preferred model for tourism development in Latin America and the Caribbean. Also of note are new Geotourism MapGuide projects, a unique Cypriot-Egyptian geotourism conference, the fourth edition of Montreal’s social-enterprise Geotourism Magazine, and much more.
Canadian Geotourism Region to Host Oct 19 Conference
Thousand Islands, St Lawrence River. Photo: Ian Coristine.
UPDATE: The Summit has taken place successfully, with valuable cross-fertilization between sustainable-tourism experts and representatives of UNESCO-recognized Biosphere Reserves from around the world. Key take-aways from the conference will be posted as soon as possible.—Portal editor
The area surrounding the famous Thousand Islands tourism region in
Canada and the USA is uniquely blessed with the important designations
in recognition of its rich biodiversity and exceptional cultural
heritage. Two UNESCO designations, the Frontenac Arch Biosphere
Reserve, and the Rideau Canal World Heritage site, Continue reading
A sprawling new geotourism project is wrapping up its initial request for map-guide nominations in four American states bordering the Gulf of Mexico. Organizations in Alabama, Florida, Louisiana and Mississippi have joined in the U.S. Gulf Coast States Geotourism project. Years in preparation, the project is funded partly by BP in compensation for damage to tourism in the wake of the 2010 DeepWater Horizon oil well blow-out. For a full description see the NatGeo press release.
A key goal of National Geographic Geotourism MapGuide projects is citizen participation. Local media have been spreading the word, for example: in Louisiana, including New Orleans, in Mississippi, in Alabama, both coastal and inland. (Note: these media links may expire.) James Dion of National Geographic Maps and Solimar International have been managing the project from the Geographic side. A regional committee, the U.S. Gulf States Southern Crescent Stewardship Council, must now complete review of the nominations in preparation for the official roll-out of the Geotourism MapGuide later in the year.
With four states participating, this Geotourism MapGuide project obviously comprises many destinations. One can hope that the process will deepen local appreciation for their own distinctive natural and cultural heritage, raise perceived value of those assets, and help to build a more sustainable approach to tourism and destination stewardship, especially along the coast.
Managing tourists at popular World Heritage sites has long been a focus for Englebert Ruoss, who formerly headed up the UNESCO office in Venice and has now launched a sustainable-destinations initiative called Global Regions. Its new 164-pp publication is SUSTAINABLE TOURISM AS DRIVING FORCE FOR CULTURAL
HERITAGE SITES DEVELOPMENT – Planning, Managing, Monitoring Cultural Heritage Sites in South East Europe, which he describes as “a compendium focused on the broad field of interactions between heritage conservation and sustainable tourism.”
The nine examples of what to do—and not do—include Aquileia, Berat, Bitola, Cetinje, Dubrovnik, Hallstatt, Idrjia, Nafpaktos and, most notoriously, Venice. A major focus Continue reading
Qantas, Zeitz, Roteiros, Bhutan Among Those Named at Lucerne Forum
The World Tourism Forum in Lucerne, Switzerland, has now provided a direct link to the 2013 illustrated showcase of best practices. The 20-minute sustainability-themed showcase “Green—And Beyond” ranges through various realms of tourism. Your portal editor was privileged to present it at the main plenary session April 18 before a 400-strong international audience of travel CEOs, government tourism officials, heads of civic organizations, and—unique to this forum—rising young talent. You can also download the slides as a PDF.
Entlebuch UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, near Lucerne, recognized for holistic practices. Photo: Jonathan Tourtellot
Cosponsored by National Geographic Traveler, the showcase sought to demonstrate how the sustainability movement in travel and tourism is evolving from such basics as recycling and low-energy light bulbs into a more holistic approach that encompasses cultural and natural heritage, aesthetics, endemic arts and artisanry, and destinations as a whole. Selections drew from the suggestions and support of colleagues and affiliates of the Destination Stewardship Center.
The showcase selections represented good practice trends from around the world. They included: Continue reading
Eastern Newfoundland Geotourism MapGuide Rolls Out
The latest National Geographic Geotourism MapGuide project rolled out for eastern Newfoundland last week, providing both a living website and a print map. As typical for these projects, a lot of Newfoundlanders helped.
Summer festivals are one place to find Newfoundland’s delicious but elusive moose-burgers. Photo: Jonathan Tourtellot
This geotourism project is personal for me. When my wife and I first decided in 2005 to flee the steamy Washington DC summer and visit St. John’s and the Avalon Peninsula, I rapidly came to the conclusion that Newfoundland was a perfect geotourism destination—deep sense of place, with distinctive nature, culture, history, architecture, and plenty of local pride. Further explorations westward only confirmed our impressions. Continue reading
Nurturing Boutique in a Chain World
My dream for several decades had been to buy a small boutique hotel or ecolodge in a culturally unique region of the world and partner with an experienced local. When I sold my company and became aware of the Center for Sustainable Destinations (then the custodian of the geotourism movement put forth by the National Geographic Society), my family became one of the first donors of both funding and pro bono research.
Restoration with the help of philanthropic investors will turn this timeworn mansion in Quito, Ecuador into an atmospheric boutique hotel. Photo courtesy László Károlyi
We traveled to Croatia, Costa Rica, St. Croix, Ecuador, and the Bahamas in a quest to find the best opportunity to demonstrate a model/prototype project to NGS. This project would have to include the necessary geotourism requirements. Continue reading
Minnesota’s Paul Bunyan Scenic Byway generates $21.6 million for local economy
Minnesota research demonstrates the tourism economic value of scenery and scenic routes, says Max Ashburn of Scenic America. For more such studies, go to Scenic America.
A recent study by the University of Minnesota Tourism Center found that the Paul Bunyan Scenic Byway is a major draw for travelers and has a significant positive impact on the local economy. The study found that in 2010 an estimated 23,800 travel parties visited the region specifically because of the byway. These visitors spent a total of $21.6 million dollars while in the area including $14.6 million on locally produced goods and services.
Of course, Scenic Byways do more than just contribute to the local economy. They also help preserve and promote the natural, historic and scenic character of a region and are a source of pride for local residents and businesses.
The Paul Bunyan Scenic Byway is one of 150 designated roads in the National Scenic Byways Program administered by the U.S. Department of Transportation.
National Geographic Traveler named the island of Grenada a must-see place for 2013 because it has so far retained its authentic Caribbean character. Local community activist Denyse Ogilvie, of People in Action, opines on the February election that reinstalled former Prime Minister Keith Mitchell and the implications for tourism development.—Editor
On the re-election of Dr the Rt. Hon. Keith C Mitchell: Grenada was stuck between the devil and the deep blue sea for this election; a government in power that was ineffective, inefficient and plagued with in-house fighting versus a government who has had a history of “running de money”, despite the many issues it may have thrown up that negatively impacted the environment and conservation, investment and marginalization of communities.
Mt Hartman, home of the rare Grenada dove, from Martin’s bay Marina. Photo: Denyse Ogilvie
Over 60% of the people are under the age of 25, over 50% of them are unemployed, all frustrated with no apparent light at the end of the tunnel at the most productive period of their lives. Frustration and desperation are dangerous elements upon which decision making should be based. Continue reading