Long-distance walking tracks: offering regional tourism in the slow lane

Hardiman, Nigel and Burgin, Shelley (2015) Long-distance walking tracks: offering regional tourism in the slow lane. In: Australian Regional Development Conference 2015, 26-28 August 2015, Albury, NSW, Australia.

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Item Type:Conference or Workshop contribution (Paper)
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Abstract

Nature-based destination tourism has witnessed substantial growth in recent years, particularly in Regional Areas. This type of tourism is for people who do not want to merely passively view scenic landscape but to actively immerse themselves within it, for example by undertaking long-distance walks. Many tourism agencies and local governments have responded to such demand by developing, branding and promoting ‘walking products’; overseas examples include the UK’s Pennine Way, the USA’s Appalachian Trail, Peru’s Inca Trail and New Zealand’s Milford Track. In Australia, enthusiasts can tackle the Overland Track and South Coast Track (Tasmania), Larapinta Trail and Jatbula Trail (Northern Territory) and Thorsborne Trail (Queensland). Such products offer benefits to visitors in terms of healthy exercise undertaken in stunning scenery, along with enhanced awareness and appreciation of the natural environment. Local governments, commercial tourism operators and land conservation agencies within whose purview such walks are located, derive economic benefits in terms of increased employment and/or income with minimal outlay in the development of the walking tracks. In this paper we review trends in consumer behaviour driving demand for such products; describe a proposal for a new long distance walking track in the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area in New South Wales; and consider potential regional economic benefits arising from such products.

Keywords:Recreation management, long-distance walks, enhancement of regional economy, camping holiday, multi-day hiking, walking holiday, JCOpen
Subjects:N Business and Administrative studies > N840 International Tourism
N Business and Administrative studies > N500 Marketing
N Business and Administrative studies > N222 Recreation/Leisure Management
N Business and Administrative studies > N800 Tourism, Transport and Travel
N Business and Administrative studies > N810 Travel Management
N Business and Administrative studies > N231 Land Management
Divisions:Lincoln International Business School
ID Code:22892
Deposited On:12 Apr 2016 16:05

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