How can we improve sustainable accesibility to rural tourist destinations?

Regarding Dr. Kristof Tomej 

Department of Tourism and Service Management at Modul University Vienna


There can be no sustainable tourism development without sustainable mobility, which is contingent on informed planning and policy.

In rural regions, tourist attractions are spatially scattered, and poor transport planning translates into lower accessibility for non-driving visitors, yet few sustainable planning tools are available for non-urban tourism contexts.

In a new article published in the Journal of Sustainable Tourism, Researcher and Lecturer at Modul University Vienna, Dr. Kristof Tomej and Dr. Dr. Janne Liburd from the University of Southern Denmark, seek to fill this gap by combining advances in transport geography, rural transport, and transport for tourism. They also sought to develop an original algorithm for evaluating sustainable accessibility of tourist attractions within regional rural destinations. Based on the Spatial Network Analysis for Multimodal Urban Transport Systems (SNAMUTS) framework, the use of spatial network measures is presented in a scalable and understandable manner that can be replicated by users with basic mathematical skills and computer software. The applicability of the algorithm is illustrated in the case of West Balaton Region in Hungary.

The article demonstrates the use of sustainable transport accessibility as a measure for transport evaluation that considers both environmental aspects and social justice framed as sustainable tourism participation for all. Dr. Kristof Tomej says of this research:

"With this article, we would like to draw attention to the importance of improving sustainable mobility options for tourists in rural areas. Rural tourist destinations with a traditionally poorer provision of public transport (as compared to major cities) will face decreasing visitor arrivals, as the number of tourists who cannot or choose not to drive is increasing. We have developed an algorithm, based on a transport assessment tool that has been previously used only for urban transport systems, to fit the context of rural tourism. We hope that not only our algorithm will be used by regional non-urban destinations to evaluate the public transport accessibility of their tourist attractions, but that our research will also advance the discussion on issues of rural tourism mobility"

Download the article in full here

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Related subjects:
BSc in Tourism Management
BSc in International Management
Master in Sustainable Development, Management and Policy