The term alternative tourism is easily explained by describing the setting and activities undertaken at alternative tourist sites. Is this because alternative tourism is not an independent phenomenon but that, it was crafted out of the traditional type of tourism, commonly referred to as mass tourism…
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The term alternative tourism is easily explained by describing the setting and activities undertaken at alternative tourist sites. Is this because alternative tourism is not an independent phenomenon but that, it was crafted out of the traditional type of tourism, commonly referred to as mass tourism. Newsome, Moore & Dowling (2002) describe alternative tourism as “the existence of small or medium companies, created by families or friends, where there is the possibility of more contact with the communities and where most of the times there is a respect for the environment.” This means that alternative tourism is best seen in the set up of a particular tourist site and the kind of activities that go on there. Alternative tourism is therefore the opposite of the traditional form of tourism which is characterized by companies are property of big transnational corporations, where one expects the same type of service and facilities all around the world.In this form of tourism, the owners of tourist sites barely have any connection with the local community. As far as they are concerned, they are into business and the tourist is their greatest assert. So where as mass tourism is set up by big companies and corporations, alternative tourism is set up by relatively small groups of people, mostly family-owned. Again, whereas mass tourism has relatively nothing to do with the local community, alternative tourism focuses on the local community, what the community is made up of, its culture, its arts, its history and so on. As tourists around the world look for diversity in their visitations, most of them have resorted to alternative tourism for this variety. Countries around the world have therefore began giving alternative tourism a lot of attention. One of such countries is Costa Rica. Background of alternative tourism in Costa Rica In recent years, Costa Rica has embraced alternative tourism. This is seen in the springing up of several well resourced alternative tourism destinations in the country. The specialty of these tourism destinations are in the fields of native arts and crafts. These are aspects of tourism that helps in the promotion of the rich culture of the country. Barker (2010) observes that “In recent years, however, artists across the spectrum have found a new confidence and are shaking off rigid social norms, exciting for a country long dismissed as a cultural backwater.” This is to say that the promotion of art and culture as part of the unique identity of Costa Rica was relative impoverished in the country until recently when the urge to promote art and culture was taken over by alternative tourism in the country. Presently, the alternative tourism industry is taking great advantage of the country’s abundant natural resource gift. Todras-Whitehill (2009) notes that Costa Rica is “enclosed in tropical lines of latitude, with appropriate squiggles for mountains, coasts and interior borders, it's an inkblot for projecting travel fantasies. Beach lovers trace the craggy coasts and see hammocks swinging in the sunset breeze.” The tourism industry in Costa Rica has capitalized on this to promote alternative tourism in the area of culture heritage, events, showcasing beauty of nature vacation travels. Among all tourist destinations in Costa Rica, one destination site that has been hailed as the most preferred is the Manuel Antonio National Park Manuel Antonio National Park, an outstanding alternative tourism destination in Perspective Manuel Antonio National Park is in the alternative tourism business in Costa Rica. It is found in the North Puntarenas Province of Costa Rica. Manuel Antonio Na
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(“A new tourist market, Costa Rica Research Paper”, n.d.)
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“A New Tourist Market, Costa Rica Research Paper”, n.d. https://studentshare.org/tourism/1408974-a-new-tourist-market-costa-rica.
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