Open Access

The importance of local community attitudes for sustainable tourism in protected areas: The case of Tikvara Nature Park, Serbia


One of the most important elements of tourism development is encouraging the participation of the local community. In order to encourage their participation, it is necessary to be aware of the attitudes of the local residents with respect to the development of tourism. The aim of this research is to determine the attitudes of the local community towards the development of sustainable tourism and ecotourism in the protected area Tikvara, along with the local residents’ level of nature protection and preservation in the Tikvara Nature Park. A survey was conducted among 301 residents and the results indicate that while good community support for sustainable tourism activities in each area captured by the survey (planning, participation, activities, and decision-making) exists, local residents’ attitudes are affected by their sociodemographic characteristics. Nonetheless, a large number of locals were happy to participate in protection programs and believed that the environment should be protected for future generations to enjoy the natural and cultural resources of this area. These findings should be considered when designing sustainable tourism management strategies, while respecting the needs and rights of the local community, as the willingness of locals to develop sustainable tourism is essential for the success of this sector.

Publication timeframe:
1 time per year
Journal Subjects:
Social Sciences, Sociology, other