Mining impacts on the image of a tourist resort: case: Ylläs, Kolari
Mikkonen, Miia (2013-05-15)
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A mining boom is taking place in Northern and Eastern Finland. Mining may cause land-use conflicts with existing activities in the area. This paper studies the impacts mining has on the image of the Ylläs tourist resort in Kolari in Northern Lapland. The image of Ylläs relies strongly on nature. This study studies the image building process and things that have an impact on it. The main focus of the study is the perceptions of tourists about mining in the vicinity of a tourist resort. The theoretical framework uses the concepts of place, place promotion, landscape, identity and image. In Kolari there are plans to reopen the Hannukainen iron-gold-copper mine, which concerns the tourism industry due to its possible impact on the image of Ylläs. Empirical material was gathered with a questionnaire realized in cooperation with DILACOMI -project during spring 2012 at the Levi and Ylläs tourist resorts. Information on tourists’ attitudes towards mines, especially in cases where mines are located close to a tourist resort was collected. The interviewees’ thoughts in regards potential mining in the area were slightly negative. Mining might reduce tourists’ willingness to revisit the area. Both the threats and opportunities that mines bring were recognized. Mining and tourism can exist next to each other. Finding the balance between possible mining activities and tourism is the key to decreasing the negative impact on the image.
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