Self-guided trails – a route to more responsible tourism?

Nicola MacLeod
2016 Tourism Recreation Resarch  
In recent years, the tourism industry has faced its critics by turning its attention to the development of more responsible tourism. This is a form of tourism that is mindful of the diverse needs of host communities, local business and the visitor. This article investigates the development of more responsible tourism from the perspective of a popular tourist product -the self-guided trail or route. The trail or route provides a themed and interpreted journey through the urban or rural
more » ... or rural landscape, creating links between sites, attractions and other tourism businesses and providing information and storytelling along the way. These products have a global appeal and are becoming more prolific. Through reviewing the literature on trails the paper analyses their key characteristics and the rationales of developers and concludes that trails have the potential to contribute to more responsible tourism development. The paper goes on to propose a series of planning principles which are derived from the literature and examples of good practice therein which may assist trail developers in creating more responsible tourism routes and trails. The discussion concludes with a case study of a project in Cornwall in the south west of the UK, where responsible planning has underpinned recent trail development.
doi:10.1080/02508281.2016.1147222 fatcat:cpcsxknvlnf55jgp5wfzllg7a4