Interim Report of the Factors Influencing the Success of Community Tourism in South Africa

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Submitted to:
ACTS South Africa
PO Box 13911
South Africa
South Africa

30 November 2009

Submitted by: FinnGroup Ltd

Group 3
Helin Henrietta 09163185
Mäkinen Outi 07083938
Raudaskoski Heli 09163176
Tuominen Katja-Mirjami 07084112

In this consultancy report we will discuss about the concepts of community tourism and pro-poor tourism and their sustainability both in general and in the context of South Africa. The first section of the report introduces sustainable tourism development and its current trends. The next section discusses community tourism and pro-poor tourism; their connection to sustainable tourism development. After the general theory, the report moves on to discuss these issues in the context of tourism in South Africa. It will consider the tourism policy framework and practises to date. We will critically analyse the positive and negative aspects of tourism development in local communities as well as in general level in South Africa. After the main body of the report we will make carefully considered recommendations for future policy making and practises of sustainable tourism development in the destination. c. The meaning of sustainable tourism development: a critical analysis of current trends (Raudaskoski Heli)

The concept of sustainable tourism development has become a widely accepted practice in tourism industry worldwide within the last decade (Sharpley, 2000). As tourism industry continues to grow, the importance of integrating sustainable approach with tourism development becomes extremely necessary (UNEP & WHO, 2005). Especially the growth of mass tourism has led to many problems including environmental, social and cultural dimensions (Mowforth & Munt, 2009). The importance of sustainable travel and tourism was recognized in tourism-related literature in the early 1990’s (Cohen, 2002). Many of the world’s tourists are seeking to visit well-preserved historical and cultural attractions in destinations that are located in authentic, clean and fragile environments (UNEP & WHO, 2005). In order to secure the industry’s future, the tenets of sustainability should be included in the tourism development; tourism policymaking and practice. (Cohen, 2002) In 2005, the United Nations Environment Programme and the World Tourism Organization defined that the aims of sustainable tourism development are to minimize the negative impacts that tourism has on the destinations’ local environments as well as to increase the benefits of the industry growth in the communities (UNEP & WHO, 2005).

d. A critical overview of community tourism and pro-poor tourism as sustainable approaches to tourism development in the developing world (Mäkinen Outi)

Community tourism gives a possibility to local people to get involved in tourism business by offering tours and activities in the destination and develop the sustainable tourism. (Mann, 2000) The requisite is that the community is surrounded by the physical environment and it reflects to local economic activities and lifestyles. (Singh et al, 2003) Locals are benefiting from the tourism in many ways such as being part of the decision-making, ownership and receiving profits from any tourism ventures. According to United Nations, “the most sustainable form of tourism will be achieved when local people take control of their lives and determine to live according to their traditions on their own terms.” (2001, pp. 11) Policy and regulations, funding, planning and education are the key components in achieving the sustainability in community tourism according to Choi & Sirakaya’s research results in 2005. Richard and Hall assert that there is no sustainable tourism development without community sustainability. Communities need to support themselves on the basis of available resources such as the environment...
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