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Planning and Policy for Sustainable Development in Rural Tourism

Flavia Balas

Diploma in International Hotel and Tourism Management HTMi Switzerland

Introduction
The tourism experience is not a new one, it is stated that people started to travel from the eginning of the world, since stone age

even though the! did not travel for entertainment purposes, in the present time, more exactl! in the last decades tourists are travelling for their own pleasure "Smith, #$$%&' This paper will anal!se the rural tourism and its relation to other intermediate factors li(e sustaina ilit!, planning and polic!' )ural tourism is defined as tourism within rural areas with the aim of developing oth

economical and social sides of potential fields "*ina and Delfa, #$$%&' In order to have a trough this paper will etter understanding of rural tourism,

e also emphasised its connection with

sustaina le development, which is relevant, and can determinate if the planning and polic! within rural tourism are convenient as long terms decisions and implementations' For this reasons the paper will focus also on existing researches connected to rural tourism, there will e considered as examples two countries with the scope of

demonstrate and explain more accurate the (e! o +ectives of farm, ased tourism, there will e ta(ing into account the -nited .ingdom and )omania, the main reason for choosing this countries is ecause of their different perception and development of rural tourism' /ast ut not least there will e a general conclusion

regarding this tourism sector and also further recommendations with the goal to improve the later researches on this su +ect'

Rural Tourism
)ural tourism, in a simpl! wa! is defined as a tourist activit! which ta(es place in rural areas "/ane 011%&' From another point of view, the countr!side incorporates in total seven different leisure

activities which are divided in sections and rural tourism is +ust one of these "2urr! 011%&' The main issue regarding this argument is that the su +ect of the paper is connected in an exclusive manner to overnight sta!ing which puts the reader in difficult!, since rural tourism is more than that eing related to various t!pes of activities maintained ! tourists' In an at!pical wa! it is stated that tourism is connected with particular parameters of rural areas which are resulting in a special expression of 3rural3 tourism "Bramwell, 011%& furthermore the direction in which this su +ect is heading is a new one, orientated on the commercial use, the elemental utilit! eing

omitted "2lo(e, 011#&' The same pattern is continued later, the commercialisation is mentioned as the first value in farm, ased tourism followed ecause of the range of products offered in the area, eing

! formal and organized activities as well "Fleischer and

Tchetchi(, #$$4&' 5t the same time, rural tourism is defined as a concept which covers the touristic activit! developed and managed ! the local population ased on the natural and anthropologic local potential "2andea et al, #$$6&, more, at an international level, ta(ing into account the tourists attracted ! this sector, interested

in culture and environment, as a niche mar(et, it is emphasized that the rural destinations are not affected in comparison with mass mar(et tourism destination, eing an alternative to it "7T8, #$$#&'

In the following figure "figure 0& the relationship etween formal and informal activities and features in a rural context is presented'

Figure 09 The )ural Tourism Spectrum

Planning and Policy


In order to understand the definitions of planning and polic! regarding the tourism sector, this paper is focusing first on the general aspect of it' Since planning and polic! is in connection with various factors, it is difficult to have an evident understanding of it ":reen erger et al', 011;&, its relation with the evanescent aspect of actions, the numerous people operating in it, and the incidental facts within methodological issues ma(es the concept applica le to a wide range of sectors "I id&, considering the tourism zone, it is crucial while developing a plan to wor( in harmon! with people and respect all the decisions ta(en "<amal and :etz, 0114&' 7hile spea(ing a out planning, an important factor should e ta(en into account, sta(eholders, especiall! in tourism and in some developing countries it is relevant to convince these parties to participate in national, local plans in regard to develop the economical segment of tourism within the area ")eed, 011;&' 7hen discussing a out polic!, attention is directed toward government as well, to allow the polic! to develop it should e first depreciated the government influence and increase the power of non,governmental and private sectors "*i(e et al', #$$=&' In the next figure "figure #& there can e seen the steps re>uired for a sustaina le polic! ma(ing process'

Figure #9 The *olic!,Ma(ing *rocess

Sustainable Development
Before reaching sustaina le tourism within a countr!, it should e

first considered the sustaina le development which integrates three principles illustrated in the following9 providing respect for the population, providing respect in regard to the environment and concerning the local culture and the econom! of the host region "Tetelea et al', #$$1&, henceforth the aim is to confer long term sta ilit! in accordance with the expansion of tourism and the demand to preserve the environment "/ane, #$$1&' From another perspective, sustaina le development can costs, more accurate amplif! its outcome of e discussed related to

! reducing the environmental costs and

enefits in addition sustaina le development is an an influential s!stem which is constrained !

circumstances "*eeters, #$0#&' 5 priorit! related to sustaina le

development is also the evolution of 3green thin(ing3 which came in the last !ears to the glo al attention even if the concept has a venera le ac(ground, since the civilization has an ample impact on the environment visi le from the primordial eginning of the

humanit! "Hard! at al', #$$#&' The social and cultural impact has its own importance as well, the tourism actions underta(en can ! people

e seen negative or positive even though the su +ect is within

the same area "?auright and Schimmel, #$$4&, for instance it is seen as positive if it creates new services in the local area, generates a good state of mind for residents and tourists "Martin and Herrero, #$00&, in contrast it is seen as a negative effect on the ha itat, causing degradation on the finite natural settings and producing +o s su ordinated to seasonalit! "Fleischer and

Felsenstein, #$$$&' The following figure "figure 6& is a representation of a sustaina le development model'

Figure 69 The Sustaina le Development Model

Existing Research: Rural Tourism in Romania


In the last two decades the farm, ased tourism in )omania has increased rapidl! due to the agricultural characteristics of the countr!, which are in relation with the local families, and the usinesses provided ! them in regard to the tourists interests

"Bogan, #$0#&' @ven though this tourism sector is in a developed stage, the rural activities are still informal and unorganized ! cause of economical and social issues "I id&, issues which are related to the local communities, from a positive side of view, people are investing in the facilities provided for tourists and the! understand and tr! to conform to their needs, in contrast, in other situations locals are spending mone! +ust for their own amenit! even though the! are conscious that +ust through tourism the! will achieve

economic development "Tetelea et al', #$$1&' 5nother (e! point is the sustaina le development of the rural areas, according to /ight "#$$;& the government in this countr! is pla!ing an indirect role trough the tourism agencies which are advertising the rural spaces, oth at national and international level for an economical aim, again' 7hen mentioning the environmental condition, an important aspect has to e ta(en into account, due to governmental laws the

protecting rural areas in the countr! are well conserved, the pollution eing at a reduced level maintained "Surugiu et al', #$0#&' ! sta(eholders when

Important to realize is the role pla!ed

discussing the rural )omanian zone, in order to increase the tourists rural experience there are (e! factors ta(ing into account li(e the artisans, the guesthouses managed ! locals, the routes and

transportations and so on "Tetelea et al', #$$1&'

Rural tourism in the United

ingdom

@ven though it was not stated in the last !ears, the rural tourism in the -nited .ingdom is focusing on the same issues as in the present time' 5ccording to *5 2am ridge @conomic 2onsultants "01A;& the main issue in convincing tourists to return in the rural areas is connected to the facilities offered for them, starting form

accommodation

and ending up with the activities

provided'

?owada!s, in order to develop the countr!side in a sustaina le wa!, the countr! attracts people #$06&, more specific ! using its ?ational *ar(s "Ben!on,

! integrating the rural attractions in natural

par(s, for increasing the economical development' 5nother issue encountered is related to the social impact, since more people are moving from the cit! to the countr!side, the rural aspect is starting to have ur an accents "5lexander and Mc.enna, 011A&, in other words even if the activities are ta(ing place in a rural area the! can e ur anized through different perspective, theme par(s for example "I id&'

5ccording to D@F)5 "#$06& #$B of the total population lives in rural areas, therefore from the point of view of planning and polic! it is difficult to understand and categorized their needs in order to develop a sustaina le rural econom!, since the! are mixed with the native communit!' Despite the fact that the countr! encounters various issues, the main aim remains the same, esta lishing a wide range of attractions suita le for all t!pes of tourists under individual ownership in affiliation with the development of the environment in a conducive wa! "5lexander and Mc.enna, 011A&'

!onclusion and Recommendations


In the last decades the tourism industr! has grown dramaticall! ut

even though its development is remar(a le it is still directl! related to political, economical and social factors, which can affect the industr! in negative and positive wa!s' 5 su tourism is rural tourism, an experience farm activities which has attempted industr! within

ased on countr!side and in the last !ears a

modernisation directed toward an ur an aspect, important to realize are the lin(s with this factors in order to achieve a suita le esta lished development which is significant not onl! at a

communit!, local scale of farm ased tourism'

ut also at a national scale in the expansion Therefore, to achieve its aims it must e

ta(en into account that in the rural areas, tourism has an a solute

connection

with

the

environment

and

for

the

purpose

of

development it shall maintain a limited resources'

alance with the nature and its

5nother (e! point that should

e remem ered is the economical

aspect, since there are existing a large num er of affected rural communities the countr!side tourism should e integrated in it with

the intention to produce sta ilit! in the econom! of rural areas, for this reason the sustaina le development pla!s also a relevant role together with all the impacts mentioned a ove, not to e forgotten

are the involvement and the actions underta(en ! the sta(eholders who are significant when spea(ing a out sustaina ilit!' @>uall! important is reconsidering planning and polic!, moving from government through pu lic and nongovernmental associations while esta lishing and implementing future laws important for tourists and long term environment in addition, the organs should consider the flexi ilit! and the unpredicta ilit! of tourism and should focus more on relia le processes of planning and polic!' 5fter given these points a last element that should e mentioned is prosperit!, to e

more specific it is important for all sides and regarding all aspects, starting with the environment continuing with the social and cultural part and ending up with the economical issues' )egarding this research paper there are some aspects that can e explained in

detail and more accurate than a ove, constraints are also present

within the empirical part therefore to have a etter understanding of the topic, rural tourism should e anal!sed form other perspectives

as well' B! ta(ing other countries into account, this would pro a l! give a particular view of the factors that are important in each area'

5nother wea(nesses that should

e mentioned is in relation to

planning and polic!, even though it is different from countr! to countr! the final outcome is common for ever!one and connected to environment and econom! ut the importance of these aspects is

accepted in a distinctive approach depending on the countr! therefore to have a detailed description further reading is

recommended' It is suggested to have a proper understanding of sustaina le development within rural tourism in order to identif! in a suita le manner all the existing issues of an area or a communit!'

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