Journal of Mountain Science

, Volume 6, Issue 4, pp 394–404 | Cite as

Community responses to mountain tourism: A case in Bhyundar Valley, Indian Himalaya

  • Ram Babu SinghEmail author
  • Suraj Mal
  • Chandra Prakash Kala


Tourism industry has become an important part of Indian economy, and tourism development has been, however, concentrated to a few areas. Accumulation of tourism activities has reached the critical stage in most of the tourism centers, which pose serious threats to the natural environment. The Bhyundar Valley of Nanda Devi Biosphere Reserve (NDBR) in Uttarakhand State of the Indian Himalaya is a burning example of such problems. Land use/cover changes, deforestation and accumulation of garbage are some of the negative impacts of unregulated tourism in the valley. Unsustainable activities of tourists and villagers in the valley make such problems very severe. To deal with the ongoing problems and ensure community involvement in tourism management and environmental conservation, the Biosphere Reserve Authority introduced ecotourism in the form of Eco Development Committees (EDCs) in the Bhyundar Valley. Study reveals that many problems associated with tourism have been minimized to some extent with the help of EDCs but few are still prevailing in valley. However, the existing attempts to conserve the valley from the negative effects of tourism are inadequate and modifications are needed in the current initiatives.

Key words

Mountain tourism Land use change Community response Eco development committee Environmental management 


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Copyright information

© Science Press, Institute of Mountain Hazards and Environment, CAS and Springer Berlin Heidelberg 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ram Babu Singh
    • 1
    Email author
  • Suraj Mal
    • 2
  • Chandra Prakash Kala
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Geography, Delhi School of EconomicsUniversity of DelhiDelhiIndia
  2. 2.Department of Geography, Shaheed Bhagat Singh CollegeUniversity of DelhiDelhiIndia
  3. 3.Ecosystem and Environment Management DivisionIndian Institute of Forests ManagementBhopalIndia

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