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Ecotourism in Bako National Park, Borneo: Visitors' perspectives on environmental impacts and their management

Chin, C.L.M., Moore, S.A., Wallington, T.J. and Dowling, R.K. (2000) Ecotourism in Bako National Park, Borneo: Visitors' perspectives on environmental impacts and their management. Journal of Sustainable Tourism, 8 (1). pp. 20-35.

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Ecotourism potentially provides a sustainable approach to development in Malaysia. However, to realise this potential the adverse effects of visitor activity and associated infrastructure on the natural environment and the tourism experience must be identified to guide management actions and thus to sustain the resources on which ecotourism ultimately depends. This study, conducted in Bako National Park on the island of Borneo, reports one of the first efforts to identify the impacts of ecotourism in Malaysia from the perspective of visitors. Environmental conditions of greatest influence on visitors' experiences included litter and biophysical conditions such as soil erosion and vegetation damage. These conditions were of greater concern to visitors than social conditions, such as the number of people. These results suggest that management efforts can be directed towards indicators of greatest concern such as litter, soil erosion and vegetation damage. The broad support given by those surveyed for a range of management actions provides managers with a choice of strategies to sustain ecotourism in Bako National Park. This study, with its sociopolitical approach, contributes to a greater understanding of the implications of the ecotourist experience for ecotourism management in Malaysia.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Environmental Science
Publisher: Channel View Publications
Copyright: © The Authors
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