ESEH Poster: Physical impacts of tourism development in South Dalmatia, Croatia 

Here Ivan Šulc from the University of Zagreb introduces his Croatian-themed Poster from the recent ESEH Conference: Physical Impacts of Tourism Development in South Dalmatia, Croatia. Environment and History sponsored the Poster Prize and our last blog published the winner. The runner-up will be featured in the coming weeks, but the standard was so high that we also wanted to showcase some of the diverse other entries.

South Dalmatia is coastal and insular region located in the South Adriatic and it is highly oriented on coastal and cultural tourism. Goal of the paper is to determine physiognomic impacts of tourism and the perception of the local population in South Dalmatia from 1960s until today within the life cycle of tourism. The results were obtained using descriptive statistics, field survey with the questionnaire survey, interviews, field observation and photo documenting conducted in 2014, and GIS analysis of physical growth of settlements in the period 1970-2010. The analysis included the physical pressure of tourism (density of tourist beds and overnight stays), number and composition of dwellings, and growth of constructed parts of settlements.

The change of density of tourist beds and overnight stays is partly in accordance with the life cycle, but with great difference in the socialist and present life cycle, due to different paradigms of tourism development (large hotels vs. private households). It resulted in spreading higher physical pressure in a wider area, while the pressure in central tourist resorts is lower than in the 1980s. In the recent period the number of dwellings for permanent residence has been decreasing due to depopulation, while second homes and dwellings used for renting to tourists have recorded intensive growth. The construction of facilities related to tourism influenced intensively the changes in the cultural landscape, particularly in the narrow coastal zone, often leading to the strip development.

Physiognomic impacts of tourism are perceived mildly positive. Respondents think tourism contributed the revitalization of historical and traditional buildings, as well as organization and cleanliness in the settlements while the impact on protection of natural resources in perceived less positive. However the respondents see crowds, noise and pollution as main negative impacts of tourism, as well as illegal, unplanned and non-aesthetic construction.

Key words: tourism, physiognomic impacts, tourism area life cycle, Dalmatia, Croatia

The poster is reproduced as an image below, and accessible in PDF form via the link.

Ivan Šulc - Physical Impacts of TourismIvan Šulc – Physical Impacts of Tourism

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