Passion for Nature: National Parks

Friday, 17 August 2018

What’s the most ancient National Park in the world? The Yellowstone National Park, founded in 1872. It crosses three of the fifty USA States: Wyoming, Montana and Idaho: the park occupies respectively the 96%, 3% and 1% of these territories.

However, the Yellowstone National Park is neither the bigger nor the most visited Stars and Stripes national park. The widest one is the Wrangell – St Elias National Park & Preserve, in Alaska, while the most visited one in 2017 was the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, whose territory is shared by North Carolina and Tennesse.

Open brackets: as National Park System claims, the agency of the United States federal government that manages all national parks, national monuments and other protected destinations, the visits mentioned above are the ones for recreational purposes. Since not all the visits to the national parks are recreational, they cannot be considered in order to know the touristic flows moved by parks themselves.

Moreover, the indication used by the National Park System refers also to the classification of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) protected areas. It’s a non-governative organization with the observer status of the United Nations General Assembly: according to the organization, a national park is a «protected area, finalized to the protection of an ecosystem and with possibilities of fruition for recreational purposes».

Actually, there are protected areas in which recreational activities are not possible. It’s the case, for example, of the strict nature reserves, exclusively established for scientific activities. Closed brackets.

The second American national park with more recreational visits in 2017 was the Grand Canyon National Park (Arizona), while the third on rank was the Zion National Park (Utah).

The fourth place is for the Rocky Mountain National Park (Colorado), the fifth for the Yosemite National Park (California), the sixth for the Yellowstone National Park, the seventh for the Acadia National Park (Maine), the eighth for the Olympic National Park (Washington) and the ninth for the Grand Teton National Park (Wyoming). The Glacier National Park (Montana) closes the Top Ten.

Let’s leave the USA and let’s reach Asia, specifically Malaysia, where is the Pahang National Park, also known as Taman Negara. It’s the first protected area of the Country (1938) and one of the most ancient rainforests of the world.

 

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Let’s reach the Taman Negara because we want to report a research titled “Intangible values and tourists’ motivations: The case of the Pahang National Park”, useful to know some reasons on which the trips in the nature are based.

In a nutshell, the factors that push the tourists towards the Malaysian national park are untouchable factors (for ex. the longing for relax), cultural ones (for ex. to know more about the lifestyle of the local population), educational ones (for ex. to recognize the fauna and flora) and aesthetic ones (for ex. to enjoy the beauty of nature).

Let’s remain in Asia, but let’s move to Thailand, to whose Capital City, Bangkok, we have recently dedicated a focus. As well as for the big number of protected areas, Thailand distinguish itself for the particular attention dedicated to the so-called ecotourism, «a responsible way of travelling in which the tourists visit and stay in a foreign Country by conserving and respecting the natural environment and the local culture, by supporting and contributing to the economic growth and to the local population’s welfare». (Quebec Summit, 2002).

 

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Let’s move from Asia to Europe, where Finland, Norway, Sweden and Italy are among the Countries with the highest number of national parks, while Iceland and Montenegro are among the Countries with the highest percentage of protected national territory.

Let’s jump in South America, where Brazil and Colombia have the highest number of parks, while in Venezuela and Chile there is the highest percentage of protected national territory.

Let’s talk about Africa, where, among the national parks to visit, there are the Serengeti National Park in Tanzania, the Namib-Naukluft National Park in Namibia and the Lake Nakuru National Park in Kenya.

Let’s finish with Oceania, specifically with Australia: among the others, there are the Kakadu National Park and the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park.

Enjoy your work with 6tour!

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