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The Social & Cultural Impacts of Tourism
Tourism can be both a force for the preservation of or, conversely, a threat to a community’s natural and cultural heritage. A 1999 report Sustainable Tourism and Cultural Heritage published by the World Bank underscores the symbiotic nature of the relationship. The mutual dependence that exists between tourism and cultural heritage is becoming more evident. With the growing interest in culture and community, tourism is finally being recognized as an industry that can boost rural economies, create entrepreneurs and jobs and help preserve indigenous cultures. ‘Above all, tourism offers a better life not just for those who make money, but for those who pay money to enjoy it’. For example, trekking tourism has led to the transformation of the traditional subsistence farming of the Sherpas of the Khumbu region into a cash economy that has generated income, jobs and a better standard of living.
One of the main challenges, therefore, for all stakeholders involved in travel and tourism, including local authorities, NGOs and businesses, is to maintain an optimal balance to ensure sustainability. Otherwise, in destinations where the natural and cultural heritage deteriorates, the economy will be put at risk as tourists migrate to better-preserved destinations. European markets in the current state of affairs need to maintain its top position in the international markets as a tourist destination and prevent decline. Certain areas of Europe are extensively exploited as a tourist destination and face many sustainability issues. In certain other areas tourism is yet an unchartered territory. Certain typologies are more prone to situations of maturity or decline.
- Urban destinations
- Coastal destinations
- Mountain destinations
- Spa destinations
Congestion, visitor and tourist mobility, deterioration of heritage sites and th.............
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