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Visitor impacts and site management at geotourism destinations and geological sites of World Heritage Value

Newsome, D. (2011) Visitor impacts and site management at geotourism destinations and geological sites of World Heritage Value. In: Third Global Geotourism Conference: Seeing destinations differently , 30 October - 1 November, Muscat, Sultanate of Oman.

Abstract

Visitor attraction and tourism activity around sites of scenic and geological interest can result in environmental damage which has the potential to degrade visitor experience and the value of the site. Such impacts include littering, graffiti, site modification by visitors, damage to sensitive rock types, fossil collecting, site erosion, damage to infrastructure and use of areas around the site for general recreation.

Major management considerations that have arisen in order to deal with such potential problems include conducting and responding to a risk assessment of access to the site and management actions at the site itself. Managers employ access pathways, barriers, viewing platforms, education and interpretation and sometimes on-site wardens and geo-guides to ensure site protection, visitor safety and successful tourism in the form of satisfied clients.

This presentation will provide an overview of visitor impacts and management illustrated from a range of geotourism destinations from around the world. Significantly the presentation will highlight the problems of over-crowding, issues associated with the maintenance of infrastructure and the need for monitoring at existing and newly planned geotourism locations.

Publication Type: Conference Item
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Environmental Science
Conference Website: http://www.geotourism.om/geo/schedule.html
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/9298
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