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Nordic Perspectives on Nature-based Tourism

From Place-based Resources to Value-added Experiences

Edited by Peter Fredman and Jan V. Haukeland

Nature-based tourism (NBT) is a sector where entrepreneurial success is highly knowledge driven. This insightful book offers a comprehensive evaluation of NBT in a Nordic context, highlighting how long-established Nordic traditions of outdoor recreation practices can reveal lessons for the field more broadly. Chapters explore Nordic and international perspectives, local communities, market dynamics, firms, creativity, innovations and value-added experience products.
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Knut Fossgard and Peter Fredman

Nature-based tourism products are complex constructs delivered to satisfy increasingly diverse expectations from nature-based tourists. This is typically done by offering a mix of products and services related to the tourists’ participation in various outdoor activities. This chapter provides a discussion about the nature-based tourism product from a supply perspective based on previous product models and data from interviews with tourism providers in Norway. We propose a two-layer model where the core includes primary experiences, which together with the place, the activity and the provider's dedication form the product foundation. Combined with the value-generating elements in the outer layer, this model provides an approach to better understand the value-adding experiences upon which the nature-based tourism product depends.

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Lusine Margaryan and Peter Fredman

This chapter looks at the role of nature in special events, and the ways event managers integrate nature in the event design. We take the perspective of event managers to explore their awareness of and use of nature as an integral experiential component of their events. Grounded in the theoretical intersection of event studies and nature-based tourism, this chapter contributes with new knowledge on the role of nature in the experience economy. Our findings suggest that nature evokes positive emotional response, enhances the overall event experience, facilitates socio-cultural community, encourages educative and introspective experiences, and provides uniqueness to the event. Based on our study, we argue that actively integrating nature into the event design can be key to authentic, unique and transformative event experiences.

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Jan Vidar Haukeland and Peter Fredman

This book contributes to interdisciplinary research-based knowledge about nature-based tourism. The focus is on linkages between place-based resources and value-added experiences, providing a multifaceted “mosaic of knowledge” towards better understanding of the rapidly evolving nature-based tourism sector. The research was undertaken before the COVID-19 pandemic had its devastating effects on tourism in 2020. We argue that small-scale nature-based tourism entrepreneurs in rural regions are better positioned to survive such crisis than operators at typical mass-tourism destinations. Future avenues of research are briefly outlined, including the meaning and benefits ascribed to nature-based tourism, issues of sustainability and resilience, and pathways to new products in this highly dynamic sector.

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Edited by Peter Fredman and Jan V. Haukeland

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Peter Fredman and Jan Vidar Haukeland

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Kathrin Stemmer, Knut Veisten, Kreg Lindberg and Peter Fredman

Packaged tourism products at the destination level may provide several advantages for both tourists and service providers, but package planning, development and management require more knowledge about the increasingly diversified demand for current and potential nature-based tourism products. This study compares package attribute preferences from discrete choice experiments across three activity segments: birdwatchers in the Arctic North, mountain bikers at a skiing destination developing summer activity products, and hikers at an iconic site in Fjord Norway. Findings indicate package preference heterogeneity across and within the activity segments, and they provide a knowledge base for managers to make decisions on types of tourism products destinations should offer to increase economic and environmental sustainability in rural areas. The demand for packages and eco-certification indicated in this study may reflect an untapped potential in the current supply of NBT products and packages.

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Peter Fredman, Jan Vidar Haukeland, Liisa Tyrväinen, Stian Stensland and Sandra Wall-Reinius

This chapter provides an overview of nature-based tourism in a Nordic context, primarily looking at Norway, Sweden and Finland. Most of the world see the Nordic countries as a region characterized by common ideas and values like openness, trust and sustainability. The landscape includes iconic attractions with fjords, mountains and glaciers, as well as extensive forest and freshwater resources. Much of the region also share long traditions of outdoor recreation practices (friluftsliv) including the Right of Public Access which influence opportunities for nature-based tourism. This chapter provides a description of key characteristic of the Nordic region as a nature-based tourist destination. It covers the transformation from extractive and natural resource-based economies to service-oriented businesses through an emerging nature-based tourism sector. This includes the demand and supply of nature-based tourism product, relationship with nature protection, public access to nature and how to govern impacts from nature-based tourism.

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Jan Vidar Haukeland, Peter Fredman, Dominik Siegrist, Liisa Tyrväinen, Kreg Lindberg and Yasmine M. Elmahdy

Nature-based tourism is a highly dynamic sector and subject to many trends and changes. Based on a comprehensive literature review, this chapter identifies broad global changes, so-called megatrends, that affect tourism in general and NBT in particular. Data from an online panel survey with experts from five countries who were asked to recognize the most prominent nature-based tourism trends in a 10 years’ perspective, is analyzed in the light of global drivers. The chapter concludes that issues related to sustainability, health and well-being, increased specialization and segmentation are the most noticeable and recurrent trends in nature-based tourism today.