BACKGROUND TO THE PROJECT
Both, great research and small research require specific series of stages to examine and to address a research problem. The purpose of this study is to collect information about the tourism industry in Newcastle and evaluate its impact on the city. With such a formula, some main problems arise particularly concerning the type of visitor’s coming to the city, the kind of attractions influencing their decision for coming to the city and the image of the city influencing the city’s growth. These questions face up with three important areas related to tourist’s perceptions, motivations and the development of the city. A key issue for the present study is to define the term urban tourism. In much of urban tourism literature it is understood as “tourism in the city" and is treated as a function of the city of interest (Ashworth, 1989: 33). However, some believe that urban tourism is a form of activity that differs substantially from other types of tourism, as well as other practices in the urban setting. According to Ashworth (1992: 3) it should therefore be viewed as a complex phenomenon consisting of the various manifestations of tourist activity, as well as from the point of view and the role that tourism plays in the wider functioning of the city. Ashworth (1989) states that tourism is a phenomenon often associated with cities rather than with other areas, and are more dependent on anthropogenic resources than the natural ones. The majority of tourist attractions are concentrated in urban centres and even if the attractiveness of the area is determined by natural beauties, the man-built tourism infrastructure is focused mainly in the cities. He also notes, that the consequences of tourism are more strongly marked in urban than in rural areas. Moreover, Law (1993) has proven that big cities are the most important places in the world visited by tourists. On the other hand, the same author criticise whether there is such thing as urban tourism? (Ashworth, 1992). Meanwhile, Law states that it is barely perceived and most widely recognized textbooks in the field of tourism only mention it (Law, 1992: 599). The urban tourism phenomenon has not attracted much attention in the academic literature (Aschworth, 1989: 84). This neglect may be because much attention has been given to holiday tourism. Also, while the academic world may have ignored tourism in cities, many reports have been produced by or for the industry (Law, 1993:3). Tourist cities, for centuries had attracted the tourists by offering them accommodation, food, entertainment and other attractions. Urban tourism has turned out to be not only an important element in the economic landscape of most cities, but also a catalyst for revival and development. Since Baltimore became famous in the 1970s by redevelopment of port areas into the office, shopping and entertainment centre, countless cities followed in its footsteps, making tourism an important element of its strategy for socio-economic development. Therefore, tourism serves as a tool to assist the transformation of an urban centre or port districts with a view to attracting inward investment, stimulating economic growth, modernising and, more specifically, changing the image of the place and enhance its marketing potential. There is no doubt that tourism in urban areas has become a global commonplace. Nowadays, tourists can pick the city by searching for what offers the most appropriate and best available set of services and attractions. Mass tourism develops under the pressure of arrivals. Therefore, nearly every city is trying to attract attention because of potential visitors. For example, the organisation of large events such as the Olympic Games is seen as an effective way to significantly increase the flow of tourists in both the short and long term. Cities and regions, in order to attract a high number of tourists compete with each other as well as commercial enterprises. For this...
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