The travel and tourism industry is the world’s largest and most diverse industry . In a report of World Tourism Organization entitled International Tourism, it has pointed out the desire to standardize the definitions in the tourism industry throughout the world. This shows that tourism is an industry at its mature stage. Standardization has been a product of the big growth of demand for this industry. Meanwhile, studies show that there is a present shift of tourism growth in Asia.
Asia has experienced a great increase in tourism for the past years. Southeast Asia, in particular has experienced the fasted growth in tourism.
Tourism contributes significantly to 11 of the 12 countries that account for 80% of the world’s poor. Seven of these countries are in Asia, namely, Bangladesh, People’s Republic of China, India, Indonesia, Nepal, Pakistan, and the Philippines. In fact, tourism in Asia is in a thriving condition. Since 1990, the Asia-Pacific region has become an increasingly important tourist destination, and it is the fastest-growing region for international tourism worldwide.
The Philippines is trying to catch on with the key players of the Southeast Asian tourism, according to the World Tourism Organization (WTO) study.
The double digit gain is attributed to growth of global tourism business; increase travel to the Asia Pacific region; and aggressive and sustained marketing of the Philippines through the WOW Philippines. The United States remained the top tourism source for the Philippines. Japan and Republic of Korea followed The figures are very promising.
The Philippines reported that tourism products such as health, sports, nature and adventure, ecotourism, convention and business have been aggressively promoted by the Department of Tourism both in international and local tourism forum.
In addition, new types of tourism products are continually being developed by the government in coordination with the private sector and local government units not only to attract more tourists but to promote a more quality tourism experience. The simple concept of tourism has transformed into many specializations such as — “sustainable tourism”, “peace through tourism”, “poverty reduction through tourism” and “nature-based tourism”. Furthermore, it has shifted from being a collective effort of the entire government to it being decentralized. And different studies have now embarked on focusing on these trends.
Holistic Approach Holistic approach to developments has been greatly considered. Within this holistic approach are the concepts of ecotourism and sustainable development. This ‘general’ approach has been attributed to the Agenda 21 which was a product of the “Earth Summit” in Rio de Janeiro in 1992. In the said summit, also known as the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, the concept of sustainable development – a development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of the future generations to meet their own needs—was introduced.
Within the scope of the said summit, are the principles for guiding action on environment and development. Since then, developments have geared towards addressing the social, economic and environmental dimensions of sustainable development. Ever since, these outlook on developments have been considered. Safeguards for environmental protection and cultural sensitivity should be developed and enforced, together with effective land use planning, zoning, and regulation. Most importantly, a sensitive balance between destination marketing and destination preparedness needs to be maintained.
Studies have assimilated and promoted such perspectives. In a joint publication of WTO, the World Travel & Tourism Council, and the Earth Council entitled: “Agenda 21 for the Travel and Tourism Industry” practical steps that governments and private tourism companies can take to implement the goals of the Rio Earth Summit and make the future of the tourism sector and our entire planet more sustainable. For example, in China similar approaches have been taken into consideration as it explores the relationship between development and conservation.
In a paper on the mentioned perspective, said that both conservation and development, if working harmoniously together, lead to the best approach.. Eco-tourism One aspect of tourism which has greatly been considered is eco-tourism. As climate change guilt among tourists grows, many tourist attractions are touting their environmental credentials in an effort to cash in on the “eco” tag. We define nature-based tourism as the segment of the tourism market in which people travel with the primary purpose of visiting a natural destination.
If we were to draw an imaginary line through the tourism industry, with one side (the smaller side) representing sustainable tourism and the other side representing non-sustainable tourism, then nature-based tourism and cultural tourism, etc. would span the divide. We equate ecotourism with nature-based tourism that falls on the sustainable side of the line, where impact on the local environment and human communities is low, direct financial benefits accrue to conservation efforts and the local communities, there is respect for local cultures and needs, and the experience builds environmental awareness.
As the demand for tourism grows, the notions for eco-tourism sometimes drift away from its original goals. Studies have been conducted on eco-tourism which aims to standardize its goals purposes. For instance, a study has pointed out the simplistic understanding of eco-tourism as the overlap between nature and sustainability. Ecotourism projects must go beyond prevailing notions of “the overlap between nature tourism and sustainable tourism”(1) to encompass the social dimensions of productive organization and environmental conservation.
Ecotourism must do more than create a series of activities to attract visitors, offering them an opportunity to interact with nature in such a way as to make it possible to preserve or enhance the special qualities of the site and its flora and fauna, while allowing local inhabitants and future visitors to continue to enjoy these qualities. They must also establish a durable productive base to allow the local inhabitants and eco-tourist service providers to enjoy a sustainable standard of living while offering these services. These trends have been monitored by organizations such as WTO.
A lot of studies have been conducted being able to go into great new heights in understanding and implementing the views on tourism. Studies on the tourism industry have indeed brought more light on the once simple notion of tourism as the act of travelling. Its complexity has brought up studies on specialized areas in different and diverse settings. Volcano Tourism Volcano tourism although have long been an industry, have not been a popular study. This could be attributed to the nature of volcano tourism, which is very specialized. But nevertheless studies about it have been considered.
Countries have greatly dealt with specializations of their tourism industries. And volcano tourism has been harnessed by countries that have sufficient resources. El Salvador for instance has mentioned in their National Plan of Tourism 2014 the importance of specializing tourism by identifying the country’s strength. “It turns out interesting to develop a supply of specialized nature that leans in identifiable and … competitive advantages. The United States and European countries constitutes the main markets of reference in the international scope for the nature tourism. .. it requires a strategy of innovation and diversification…
Within the framework of the thematic tourism of nature he is feasible to differentiate diverse slopes …volcano tourism, the scientific tourism, the photographic tourism, agroturismo, ornithological tourism, etc… “ Some papers done in China which dwells on such area of interest are: “Research on Volcanic Tourism Resources and Their Development and Utilization” and “The Development of Volcano Tourism Resources and Ecological Conservation in Zhanjiang”. Both papers discuss the role of volcano tourism resources on the success of the proposed development of eco-cultural tourism.
Through such papers, this specialized form of tourism appends even more variables. Some key variables of volcano tourism are its volcanic resources, volcanic tourism resources, volcanic ecology, and volcanic culture. Thus volcanic tourism in the context of a holistic approach involves a wide spectrum of factors and issues. Furthermore, through these papers, one would have an overview of needs and possibilities of such developments. It is said that volcano tourism is a rare tourism resource. Author Guo Jinjie of Greenpeace China has pointed the value of the landscape features and geological structures volcanoes possess.
This implies that developments around the vicinities of volcanoes are site specific as volcanoes takes many forms and natural features. Aside from the features of this natural wonder, the presence of different sectors which interacts with it has been noted as well. Volcanoes shape not only the Earth’s surface but also the course of human history. Eruptions have contributed to the downfall of civilizations, changed the course of wars, and, more frequently, destroyed whole cities killing thousands of inhabitants. On the positive side, volcanoes make fertile lands that are the source of livelihood for numerous people all around the globe.
One of the most interesting aspects of visiting a volcano is learning how its eruptions have affected the local people and their culture. Equally fascinating is to find out how the current population views the volcano: feelings run from pride to terror, depending largely on the frequency and character of the predominant eruptions. In itself, volcano tourism is very varied. The Volcanic Hazards Despite of the hazards volcanoes pose to life, studies show how people would prefer to stay within the vicinity of the volcanoes because of the great opportunities and potentials it renders.
The USGS has pointed out the following reasons: fertile soils, geothermal energy, mineral resources, industrial products, business opportunities, recreation and tourism. It should be emphasized that the short-term hazards posed by volcanoes are balanced by benefits of volcanism and related processes over geologic time. Thus has led to even more study about its hazard in the view of keeping volcanic areas ‘safer’. Moreover, any development should consider a lot of things other than profit.
In an article, it pointed out that the positive thing is we get people outdoors, appreciating the spectacle of nature. The downside is people sometimes get taken to the wrong place at the wrong time. Volcanic hazards are crucial elements to consider in any development around volcanic vicinities. Much has been studied about the hazards of volcanoes around the world. Government organizations like the U. S. Geological Survey (USGS) as well as the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) have conducted various studies about the natural hazards of volcanoes.
The unique relationship between human settlements and volcanoes has been grounds for the researches done. There are many discussions in the geophysics literature of the types and nature of volcanic eruptive behavior. In the social science literature there are discussions of public education strategies for hazards, controlling access to dangerous locations and evacuation systems. Key techniques have been explored with regards with human safety. Three critical social management techniques are commonly described: public education, access controls and evacuation systems.
Furthermore, research has been done on areas where the volcanic hazards and tourism converge. In an article, it tried to highlight that tourism industry should be given more attention when it comes with disaster management. Tourism and natural disasters are not commonly associated, but they some-times have geographical congruence. An examination of the 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens and the 1985 East Kootenay forest fires reveals how tourism factors fit the general model of natural-disaster planning. Evidence suggests that tourism should be given more attention in disaster planning.
A study had shown the key role of a multidisciplinary approach in reducing the social impact of volcanic hazards through assisting communities, organizations, and individuals following an eruption and, importantly, during quiescent periods. Meanwhile another paper looks into the capacity of resilience of traditional societies and the concurrent degree of cultural change rely on four factors, namely: the nature of the hazard, the pre-disaster socio-cultural context and capacity of resilience of the community, the geographical setting, and the rehabilitation policy set up by the authorities.
These factors significantly vary in time and space, from one disaster to another. Vulnerability of communities to such hazards has also been studied. In one paper, vulnerability is discussed relative to psychological factors namely: sense of community, coping style and self-efficacy) is used to investigate this issue.