How to maintain naturalness in nature-based tourism resorts?
It is a challenge to initiate resorts’ growth in nature-based tourism when undeveloped nature is the key attraction. The thesis focuses on the resorts’ naturalness that is essential, especially when the resorts target summer tourists. The issue is approached through four methods of landscape research. Two of the methods generate user perception-based knowledge and the rest some ecological knowledge to be combined for deeper understanding of the effects of land use on the quality of landscapes. Geo-referred ecological data, tourists’ preferences and mental maps were collected in Levi and Ylläs tourism resorts. The thesis shows that nearby nature matters to tourists in the resorts where land use has been reasonably sustainable so far. This demonstrates that infill development, i.e. land-use eco-efficiency, is a complex issue. The analysis suggests a re-evaluation of land-use strategies to promote tourists’ nature experiences.