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Profiling of shelter campers, their attitudes, and perceptions towards environmental impacts of campsite use and management: Evidence from national parks of Sri Lanka

Perera, P., Mallikage, S.T., Newsome, D. and Vlosky, R. (2022) Profiling of shelter campers, their attitudes, and perceptions towards environmental impacts of campsite use and management: Evidence from national parks of Sri Lanka. Sustainability, 14 (20). Article 13311.

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Abstract

There is a dearth of research describing the campsite user segment and in assessing camp-site users’ perceptions of the bio-physical impacts of campsite use in Sri Lanka. Using a structured questionnaire, we evaluated campsite user characteristics, visitor motivations, behaviors, and how visitor experience is affected by visible biophysical impacts at campsites. Based on underlying visitor motivations derived through a Factor Analysis and Cluster Analysis, we identified three distinct segments of campsite users: Eco-tourists, Prestige seekers, and Adventure seekers. Results indicate that the overall cleanliness of the campsite is an important attribute that affects the visitor experience. The Ecotourist segment reported environmentally desired motives, attitudes and behaviours. However, majority of campsite users belong to the Prestige-seeker and Adventure-seeker segments. Prestige seekers in particular demand better facilities and proper maintenance of campsites. Additionally, Prestige seekers are more attractive as a market segment to target because they are high-income, well-educated individuals with pro-environmental attitudes and behaviors. Recommended management actions include increasing visitor awareness, monitoring, zonation of activity areas, and enforcement of park campsite user policies to ensure enhanced visitor experience.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): Environmental and Conservation Sciences
Publisher: MDPI
Copyright: © 2022 by the authors
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/66533
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