Images of and Visitation to Protected Areas Along the Polish-German Border with a Special Focus on Two National Parks: Lower Oder Valley, Germany, and Ujście Warty, Poland
This chapter discusses images of and visitation to protected areas along the Polish-German border, focusing on two national parks: Lower Oder Valley (NPLOV) in Germany and Ujście Warty (NPUW) in Poland. First, respondents’ environmental worldviews and knowledge of protected area categories and terms are examined, before going on to identify their top-of-mind associations with protected areas in Poland and Germany, followed by a detailed assessment of the aided awareness of protected areas in the two countries. Finally, it presents details on visitation to, and evaluations of, NPLOV and NPUW based on the results of respondents’ preferences for tourism infrastructure facilities in national parks. The chapter shows that Polish respondents are significantly more familiar with protected areas in their home country than Germans, and that both sample groups know more protected areas at home than in the other country. The Polish sample also knows significantly more German protected areas than vice versa. These trends prevailed when we examined visitation to protected areas. Thus, Polish respondents have a higher inclination to visit protected areas in Germany, suggesting the existence of one-sided barriers to cross-border protected area tourism between the two nations.
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