The questionnaire on sustainable tourism destinations
The idea was born in the beginning of last summer, at a time where we were once more contemplating about the future of tourism and its impact on the environment of our planet. The ARCHELON volunteers, who participate in the sea turtle nesting beach projects and at the Rescue Centre, come from many countries around the world. Many of them have traveled to various tourist destinations. How would they rate the sustainability of tourism in our project areas?
«Our aim was to better understand how our volunteers experience the tourist activity during their participation ", says Daphne Mavrogiorgos, Director of ARCHELON. “We wanted to get their opinion on their project locations", she adds.
The questionnaire used had 20 questions and was completed by 104 people, aged 18-34 years, mostly from European countries. Most of the answers were from the Zakynthos and Kyparissiakos programs, followed by Rethymno, Chania and Lakonikos and the Rescue Center in Glyfada.
Is their project area a sustainable tourism destination? 60% of the respondents from Zakynthos, 55% of the respondents from Rethymno, 90% of the respondents from Chania, 55% of the respondents from Messara, 25% from Lakonikos and 19% from Kyparissiakos do not believe so.
Regarding nature in their project locations, most of the respondents believe that tourism has already had a negative impact on nature. Specifically, 80% of the respondents from Zakynthos, Rethymno and Chania agree to this, more than 60% of the respondents from Messara and Kyparissiakos and over 50% of the respondents from Lakonikos.
Most participants from all locations agreed that there is a need to specifically regulate the management of visitors on the sea turtle nesting beach (Figure 3).
On December 16, 2021, ARCHELON organized an online meeting for staff and volunteers. The conclusions of the questionnaires were discussed and linked to the 3 pillars of sustainable tourism: environment, society and economy and European policies on this issue.