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Tourism Management in South American Geological Areas: Comparing Two Cases from Peru and Brazil

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Abstract

There are many areas of high geological relevance in South America receiving visitors every year. However, most of these sites have not exploited their geotourism potential yet. This paper shows a comparison of the tourism management models of two geosites: Marcahuasi Stone Forest (MSF), in Peru, and Vila Velha State Park (VVSP), in Brazil. The aim of this work is to find out if the models applied in each area foster the socioeconomic development of the local population and conservation of geological heritage. Management structure, public actions, and the relationships between the stakeholders were observed and analyzed utilizing mixed data collection techniques and comparative analysis, finding out positive and negative aspects. Results show that MSF is managed exclusively by the local community and has not properly developed tourism because of a lack of planning and professional training. In VVSP, despite having a management plan and professionally prepared team, there is still a decoupling between the goal of conservation and social responsibility. In general, geoconservation is found not to be driving both forms of tourism management, and there is a lack of contribution to local socioeconomic development, mainly due to political reasons.

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We express our appreciation to the anonymous reviewers for their valuable comments which for sure improved the clarity and quality of this paper

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Correspondence to Pedro G. Gonzáles-Mantilla.

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Gonzáles-Mantilla, P.G., León, C.J. Tourism Management in South American Geological Areas: Comparing Two Cases from Peru and Brazil. Geoheritage 12, 37 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12371-020-00455-6

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