Nature based tourism product development experience from the westfjords of iceland
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Nature based tourism product development Experience from the Westfjords of Iceland. The 14th Nordic Symposium in Tourism and Hospitality Research. Hótel Djúpavík – http://www.djupavik.com . Kjartan Bollason M.A. Environmental Science and Project Manager Holar University College. Outline.

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Nature based tourism product development Experience from the Westfjords of Iceland

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Nature based tourism product developmentExperience from the Westfjords of Iceland

The 14th Nordic Symposium in Tourism and Hospitality Research

Hótel Djúpavík – http://www.djupavik.com

  • Kjartan Bollason

    M.A. Environmental Science and Project Manager

    Holar University College

Kjartan Bollason


Outline

  • The Northern Periphery Project and its objectives

  • What is nature based tourism?

  • Guiding principles for nature based tourism

  • Methods

    • Networking

    • Workshops

      • Type

      • Structure and content

      • Emphasis – communicating ideas, creating uniqueness

    • Learning from others - examples

  • Concluding remarks

Kjartan Bollason


Northern Periphery Project’s objectives

The project has three main goals:

  • To develop a model for integrating market knowledge on nature-based tourism, in order to have better informed product development and appropriate marketing activities

  • To strengthen the quality and environmental attributes of the nature based tourism product in the Northern Periphery area, and thereby contribute to sustainable product development

  • To develop knowledge, build networks, and encourage innovation, best practice, business development and a sustainable ethic in nature-based tourism

Kjartan Bollason


Northern Periphery Project - Partners

  • Westfjord's Development Agency

  • Holar University College - Rural Tourist Department

  • Project's time period 2004 -2006.

  • Participating countries: North-Norway, North-Sweden, Highland and Islands of Scotland and West fjords, Iceland

Þingeyri

Kjartan Bollason


Participating companies in the Westfjords

Dýrafjörður

  • 9 tourist companies

  • Hnjótur museum – culture and nature based + also participates in Northern Coastal Experience/NORCE

  • Hlunnindasýningin/Exhibition on use of natural resource - culture- and food based + NORCE

  • Together the companies offer:

  • Accommodation, walking/hiking, bird watching, boat trip, fishing, swimming pool, kayak trips, bus transport, horse back riding, guided walks, natural hot baths, snowmobiling

Kjartan Bollason


What is nature based tourism (NBT)?

  • Nature is the central focus for the tourist. Especially the issue of experiencing nature first hand.

  • Example:

  • Walking/hiking

  • Cross country skiing

  • Kayaking/canoeing

  • Horseback riding

Meråker, Norway

Reykjanes, Ísafjarðardjúp

Kjartan Bollason


NBT – focus is on nature

  • Also includes travelling with motorized vehicles such as cars and boats.

  • The vehicle is though not the focus of travelling but the means to arrive at a destination/site of interest.

  • Main focus on any type of experience that brings the traveller in closer contact with nature.

Haukadalur – Dýrafjörður

Kjartan Bollason


Guiding principles for nature-based tourism

  • Respect for both nature and community.

  • Emphasis on sustainability in the daily operation of companies, applying environmental management to businesses.

  • Environmental interpretation.

  • Code of conduct, e.g. WWF Code of conduct for Arctic Tour Operators

  • Local people get real benefits and participate in decision making.

  • Have a niche/uniqueness.

  • Emphasis on quality

Jökulfirðir

Kjartan Bollason


Methods – networking

  • Companies network within own region and across countries

  • Acquire new and relevant knowledge from the experience of other companies

  • Municipalities also learn form other municipalities:

    • Public transport on sea

    • Measuring direct and indirect economical benefits of tourism

    • Marketing strategies and choosing your focus group

  • Diffusion of knowledge and benefits to the community as a whole

Grunnavík, Jökulfirðir

Kjartan Bollason


Workshops

  • Heydalur – 2 day workshop

  • Korpudalur and Ísafjördur – Workshop + Conference on research and tourism – how scientific research can inform NBT product development

  • Transnational Workshop (TNW) in Bodo, Norway – October 2004

  • Upcoming TNW in Glencoe, Scotland – October 2005

  • Last TNW in Sweden – March/April 2006

Korpudalur

Kjartan Bollason


Workshops - Structure and content Example Heydalur – 2nd workshops, nov. 2004

  • Define companies uniqueness and their regions.

  • Study environmental and quality management

  • Guided walk around Heydalur, looking at potential there and examine what each company can offer.

  • Marketing – use of websites - role models, use of brochures

  • How companies cooperate/are cooperating in the West fjords

  • Marketing research in the West fjords – lecture from West fjord Development Agency

  • Marketing – your focus group!?

  • Guiding principles of nature based tourism

Kjartan Bollason


Workshops - Methods and emphasis

  • Discussions

  • Lectures – with emphasis on showing Best Practice,

  • Studying brochures

  • On-site walks

  • Dining together! –people comfortable in their own surroundings, at ease, can then be more creative and be stimulated by the environment

Lunch at Grunnavík

Kjartan Bollason


Workshops - Methods and emphasis

  • The idea behind on-site workshops is that of “experience tourism”, i.e. experience first hand

  • Learn how others run their tourism businesses, e.g. how to cope with the “weather”-factor

  • These methods beneficial for the kind of product development this project is all about

Grunnavík, “moving bridge”

Kjartan Bollason


Methods – Storytelling to create uniqueness

  • Developing each companies uniqueness – what is their story?

  • Storytelling as an important way to achieve uniqueness

    • What is unique about the company, area, product

    • To make the uniqueness clear you have to tell a story/connect the product with a story

  • To tell your own story, matter of authenticity

Grunnavík, storytelling!

Kjartan Bollason


Learning about new and successful approaches

Conferences and recreation

Brandö Konferens & Fritidsby. North-Sweden

Kjartan Bollason


Learning from companies from different regions or countries but similar challenges/environment

Sailing

Northern Light Charters.

Scotland

Kjartan Bollason


Learning from others – On direct and indirect economical benefits

Brochure from Landsdelsutvalget, Bodo in North-Norway

Kjartan Bollason


Concluding remarks

  • NBT product development is about making a product that evolves around experiencing nature first hand

  • The product must be based on sustainable guiding principles.

  • Participating companies key component in developing nature based tourism products

  • They need an effective way of getting practical information on how to do things that are relevant to their business and their surroundings.

Heydalur

Kjartan Bollason


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