Nature Tourism and Ecotourism

Master's degree in Development of Cultural Tourism Products
6 ECTS; 1º Ano, 2º Semestre, 30,0 T + 15,0 TP


Not applicable

The course aims to provide tourism concepts connected with natural heritage and skills that will enable the students to use their technical and scientific expertise to promote tourism-related activities such as ecotourism and other nature activities while respecting the environment.

1. Natural Heritage and Protected areas
1.1- National and international regions of interest
1.2- Private areas
1.3- National, European and International legislation
1.4- Geographical identification of protected areas in Portugal
1.5- Portuguese Biogeography
1.6- Management and conservation in Protected areas
1.7- Conservation outside protected areas

2. Ecotourism ? definitions, application and problematics
2.1- Ecotourism and the relationship with other typologies of tourism
2.2- Case studies analysis
2.3- Tourist activities associated to natural heritage
2.3.1- Nature based tourism typologies
2.3.2- Adventure tourism - land, water and air - Pedestrianism. Birdwatching. Equestrian Tourism. Geotourism.

3. Tools to analyse Nature based Tourism
3.1- Geographic Information Systems
3.2- Databases and inventory
3.3- Questionnaires and statistical interpretation
4. Thermal Tourism and health Tourism
4.1- Concepts, seasonality. Supply and demand in Tourism
4.2- Thermal tourism in Portugal
4.3- Hydrotherapy and thalassotherapy

5. Socially responsible behavior in Tourism
5.1- Legal requirements to start a nature based tourism
5.2- Ecological footprint. Carbon footprint, examples and calculation. Green business.

Evaluation Methodology
written exam (F); reports (RV); attendance (A). Final score =0,6*F + 0,3*RV + 0,1*A. Students which obtain less than 10 points from 20, will have to sit an exam.

- Tisdell,C. & Wilson, C. (2012). Nature-based Tourism and Conservation: New Economic Insights and Case Studies. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar
- Wearing, S. & Neil, J. (2009). Ecotourism: Impacts, potentials and possibilities?. London: Butterworth-Heinemann
- Fennell, D. (2008). Ecotourism. U.K.: Taylor & Francis Group
- Barkin, D. (2006). Ecotourism: A Tool for Sustainable Development in an Era of International Integration. U.K.: Yale F&ES Bulletin

Method of interaction
Lectures, theoretical-practical classes and field trips.

Software used in class
Quantum Gis and SPSS.