Determining ecotourism strategies using A'WOT hybrid method: case study of Troia Historical National Park, Canakkale, Turkey

AKBULAK C., Cengiz T.

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT AND WORLD ECOLOGY, vol.21, no.4, pp.380-388, 2014 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier


Ecotourism is a dynamic sector growing rapidly worldwide and is considered a means of achieving economic growth without ruining the natural and cultural resources of a given area. Ecotourism provides significant advantages in minimizing problems in touristic regions due to intensive growth and misuse of resources, thereby necessitating the importance of determining primary strategies for areas with ecotourism potential. The present study aimed to develop ecotourism strategies for the Troia Historical National Park (THNP) located within Canakkale province in the northwest of Turkey. For this purpose, the A'WOT technique, developed through integration of Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats (SWOT) and Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) methods, was used. After determination of the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats existing at the THNP, the weights of SWOT groups and their factors were calculated together with AHP and eight strategies intended for development of ecotourism were proposed. These strategies can be summarized as follows: (i) clarifying administrative responsibility for the THNP, (ii) diversification of tourism types, (iii) establishment of tourism development corridors, (iv) establishment of appropriate image for Canakkale and THNP, (v) increasing number of travel agencies, (vi) organizing training programs to develop ecotourism perception, (vii) utilization of advantages provided by strategic location, (viii) utilization of touristic assets within framework of protection-usage principle. It is believed that consideration of the strategies obtained from the findings of this study concerning the THNP and its environment will make an important contribution to the preservation of the landscape structure of the park. Findings also demonstrated that the A'WOT hybrid method is useful and effective in determining ecotourism strategies.