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Water Tourism: A New Strategy for the Sustainable Management of Water-Based Ecosystems and Landscapes in Extremadura (Spain)

Faculty of Business, Finance and Tourism, University of Extremadura, 10071 Cáceres, Spain
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Received: 13 November 2018 / Revised: 21 December 2018 / Accepted: 27 December 2018 / Published: 29 December 2018
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Abstract

Water is an important element for the conservation of ecosystems and for human wellbeing. Recently, there has been a loss of awareness about the value of this resource, which requires scientific and practical action to encourage the rise of a new cultural attitude regarding water. Tourism gives water resources great potential, because it facilitates the development of such attractive resources, combining their protection with respectful use. However, studies that have explored the water tourism–territory relationship are still scarce. The objective of this work is to explore the current, touristic use of the aquifer sites in the Spanish region of Extremadura in order to determine whether these practices have the potential to generate new sensitivity about the value of water and its importance in socioeconomic development and environmental conservation. This research uses qualitative and quantitative methodologies, obtaining results that confirm the strategic role of water in the proper management of ecosystems and for the enhancement of human wellbeing. The empirical results show the beginning of a change in water-based tourism from both a supply- and demand-side perspectives. The conclusions suggest potential new measures that will facilitate a better understanding of the value of water, enhance the quality of life for everyone, and safeguard ecosystems. View Full-Text
Keywords: water; nature-based tourism; ecosystems; territory; tourism marketing; sustainable management water; nature-based tourism; ecosystems; territory; tourism marketing; sustainable management
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Folgado-Fernández, J.A.; Di-Clemente, E.; Hernández-Mogollón, J.M.; Campón-Cerro, A.M. Water Tourism: A New Strategy for the Sustainable Management of Water-Based Ecosystems and Landscapes in Extremadura (Spain). Land 2019, 8, 2.

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