Exploitation of Tourism Attractions for Local Development in Batoke, Limbe II Municipality
|TOURISM AND HOSPITALITY MANAGEMENT|
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Local tourism development dates back to the Romanticism movement that began in the late eighteenth century. Batoke is endowed with rich historical attractions that can support various from of tourism like recreational tourism among others.
The goal of this study is to critically examine the exploitation of tourism attractions for local development in Batoke Village, Limbe II Municipality. Data for the study was collected with the use of primary and secondary sources of data through questionnaires, interview guides literature from journals, articles, magazines and websites.
Data were analysed using descriptive statistical techniques including frequency tables, charts, graphs, crosstabs, mode, mean, median, standard deviation, percentage analysis and Multiple Response Analysis (MRA) and Kruskal-Wallis H non-parametric test Spearman rho correlation coefficient to test the hypotheses.
The findings reveal that Batoke is a village in the Limbe II Municipality which is endowed with both natural and human natural attractions. But the locals/tourists are not satisfied with the level of tourism development in Batoke with tourism stakeholders less applying their roles for tourism developments in Batoke.
The problems hindering the exploitation of tourism attractions for tourism development in Batoke are; financial constraints because the limited fund is allocated in the execution of related-tourism projects, lack of interest by the youths as many youths are not willing to take part in cultural events and to learn and understand the culture, limited visitors/clients to Batoke due to the socio-political unrest in the region has slowed down the business of tourism operators in Batoke.
Finally, some recommendations were made as the chief or people of Batoke should support and encourage touristic sites in Batoke in order to make the village renowned.
1.1 Background of the Study
Local tourism development dates back to the Romanticism movement that began in the late eighteenth century (Lane, 2009). Romanticism, which was developed as a counter to industrialism, began in the natural world.
The first creative tours in local areas were rurally based on the holiday concept, but modern rural tourism began after the World War II era (Lane, 2009). Additionally, this movement had an influence on the local development of communities which can be bilaterally through tourists’ side 0(demand) and organiser side (supply).
After a period of development in the Nineties, with growth in demand and offer, local tourism has moved into a more complete phase (Long & Lane, 2000).
In this second phase local tourism is no longer a minor agent of the rural economy, landscape and social change and it has become a prior element to attract the attention of local, regional, national and supranational policy makers, although it cannot considered the main path to enhance local economies (Hall, 2005).
In the 21st century, people in urban populations have increasingly started to seek relaxation and leisure in local areas.
In this context, some traditional activities such as walking, horse riding and bird watching and adventure activities like kayaking, snowboarding and windsurfing have become increasingly popular in motivating local development in rural communities (Dashper, 2014).
Tourism is considered the world’s first investment movement of the 21st Century or “the industry of 21st Century (Theobald, 1998). The effective exploitation of tourism resources/attractions over the years have resulted to the enhancement of equitable distribution of tourism revenues, increases local participation in the decision making processes of tourism and local development, reduction of the high leakage rates and increase the multiplier effects of tourism, minimisation of the social and environmental impacts of tourism (Ondimu, 2000).
Onyejegbu (2014) added that the exploitation of tourism attraction for sustainable development in the 21st Century provide an effective way of learning by providing conducive and informal learning opportunities to sustainable development, inspires and awakens the spirit of creativity and ideas for new innovations, people get creative and acquire new attitudes towards art, values to improve themselves and the nation and build her economic prosperity and support the economy or augment other sectors of the economy.
Turkey is endowed with tourism attractions ranging from natural right up to cultural attractions which are well exploited to satisfy tourists’ needs. This is attracting thousands of tourists all over the world (Okuyucu, 2013). Examples of tourism attractions that are brings exploited to promote tourism and local development in rural communities (Turish Mahalle, Turish Belde and Turish Koy) are: Goreme National Park and the Rock Sites of Cappadocia, Great Mosque and Hospital of Divrigi, Hattusha, the Hittite Capital, Mount Nemrut, Hierapolis-Pamukkale, Xanthos Letoon, City of Safranbolu and the Archaeological Site of TroyHistoric Areas of Istanbul like the Archaeological Park, Suleymaniye Mosque and its associated Conservation Area, Zeyrek Mosque and its associated Conservation Area and the Land (Somuncu & Yigit, 2010).
Collective efforts taken by the Turkish government to support local development in local communities like Mahalle and Belde is by eliminating interregional differences in levels of local development, increasing the competitiveness of tourism sector by creating local tourism brand and support sustainable local tourism development with sustainable environmental policies among others.
The high level of exploitation of tourism attractions in European countries like Turkey has led to the development of tourism leading to local development of the local communities such as: lead to better exploitation of local attractions, brings community development to rural areas, create jobs for the locals, lengthening of stays and stimulating tourist expenditure (Richard, 1996).
Tourism is also one of the important cooperation areas in the South Asian. Both Southeast Asia and South Asia are regions with high tourism potential for prosperity and are expected to see further economic growth.
The local stakeholders have been involved in the exploitation of it tourism assets as one of the significant aspects towards sustainable local development (Kaiwa, 2017). Tokyo, Japan is endowed with tourism attractions such as: Ueno-onshi-koen Park, Asukayama Park, Showa Kinen Park (Tachikawa city), Hama-rikyu Gardens and Rikugien Garden among othes which exploitation have attracted many tourist to Asia (World Tourism City Federation (WTCF), 2017).
The high level of exploitation of tourism resources for historical and nature tourism in Tokyo have increased the number of tourist arrivals in Asia, increased the number of jobs in tourism industry, increased in the GDP of the country, increases the consumption of travel and tourism product, promotes the cultures of the locals through traditional events, promote economic sustainability through the creation of local tourism products and its sales, promotion cultural sustainability through promoting its active practice of traditional culture and entertainment, social sustainability through fostering exchanges between the different generations and enhancing the exchanges between local communities and tourists (World Tourism City Federation WTCF 2017).
Tourism development in Latin America is fostered through the sustainable exploitation of tourism resources (Isa, Ariyanto and Kiumarsi, 2019). Latin America is remarkable for natural wonders that are sure to blow the mind of any traveler.
From the world’s tallest waterfall to the largest salt flat; one of the deepest canyons on the planet, to a river that flows red. The most stunning natural wonder in Latin America is: Angel Falls, Mount Roraima in Venezuela.
Cartagena de Indias, in Colombia is an example of tourism attraction whose exploitation (by developing, and managing of archipelahos and Islands around that are paradises tor true rest) of have positively impacted the people leading to economic benefits produced by tourism, creation of jobs related to tourism, improvement of infrastructure and public spaces, opportunities for education and training (Conti, 2016).
Cameroon tourism is a growing but relatively minor industry which stands out with a genuine identity expressing diversity and stability (Noudou, 2012). It is also known for its modernity, traditional dynamism and calmness.
Cameroon has all the beauties of Africa and this explains why Cameroon is term “Africa in miniature”. The aspects of Cameroon greatly represent the values of Africa.
The different tourism attractions that are found in Cameroon are grouped into natural and manmade including rivers, falls, beaches and cultural heritage attractions as well as historical attractions. (Noudou, 2012). Tourism destinations in Cameroon like Limbe, Douala, Buea, Kribi among others are exploiting their tourism resources to market the destination for tourism by organising cultural events the Festival of Art and Culture (FESTAC) in Limbe, the South West Cultural festival in Buea, the Ngondo festival for the “SAWA” in Douala.
Also, these towns have also developed national parks, forest reserves, and museums among others that are used for tourism purposes. The development of these tourism attraction have led to the preservation of the natural biodiversity of the natural environment in Cameroon, protection of endemic species of animals, leads to the preservation of the people culture, generate revenue for the government and the locals through the taxes and entry fees paid by tourists at tourism attractions, lead to foreign exchange, leads to increase tourism arrival and brings development to the country as a whole.
Batoke is a suburban village in the Limbe II Municipality endowed with tourism potentials like historical attractions such as the cultures of the people of Batoke, their traditional meals, traditional regalia, creative activities in Batoke like cassava processing in to water fufu, palm wine tapping. But these resources aren’t exploited for creative tourism, palm wine tapping, no museum and limited tourism organisations for festivals among others.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
Batoke is endowed with rich historical attractions such as the cultures of the people of Batoke, their traditional meals, traditional regalia, creative activities in Batoke like cassava processing in to water fufu, palm wine tapping that can support various from of tourism like recreational tourism, historical tourism, coastal tourism agro-tourism among other and offer a niche tourism product of great demand in the 21st Century.
The marginal attentions given to tourism development in this community are due to the under-exploitation of the natural, cultural and historical attractions in Batoke community. A glance at tourism itineraries in Limbe proves that tour operators do not currently patronise tourism attractions in Batoke Village.
The challenges hindering tourism development in Batoke village are related to poor management, maintenance, underdevelopment, degradation, abandonment, neglect, lack of will from the locals and government and tourism service providers to carry out local development and upkeep of previous tourism development of the settlement.
This is proven by the temporal liquidation of beach resorts like the Maddison Park, poor management of the Otabela Beach hotel, increased insecurity caused by the Anglophone crisis and non-promotion of the rich cultural attractions of the Batoke people through festivals and events caused by the covid-19 pandemin.
The emergence of autr-modern beach facilities like Villa Lauta, and Limbe Lodge point out that no study are to date conducted to assess their appeals to visitors especially in the wake of competitive facilities on other communities like Mungo Beach Hotel in Mokundanhe and Moland Beach in Ideuami.
This is leading to a drop in the number of influx of tourists due to bad road, a drop in income in tourism activities due to under exploitation and degradation of the tourism resources in Batoke, reduction in production and price increased in transport fare due to poor road and low local development due to poor exploitation of tourism resources.
There is no research work on the exploitation of tourism attractions for local development in Batoke village. Other researchers have written about Limbe in general. The few research work Cheo and Abimnwi (2012) focused only on “Municipal Solid Waste Management and Groundwater Contamination in Limbe, Cameroon” and Che, et al., (2011) focused on “Landslide susceptibility assessment in Limbe (SW Cameroon): A ﬁeld calibrated seed cell and information value method” among others but did not mention anything concerning the exploitation of tourism attractions for local development which the current study hopes to fill thereby necessitate the current study.
A previous study by Neba, (2020) focused only on tourism development trends in Etisah Beach Hotel without comprehensively analyzing the community level and the full large of attractions in the area. It did not also assess the relationship of tourism to local development thereby necessitating the current study.
3.1 Research Questions
1.3.1 General Question
How has the exploitation of tourism attractions influenced local development in Batoke Village, Limbe III Municipality?
1.3.2 Specific Questions
1. What are the different tourism attractions in Batoke Village?
2. How is the state of tourism and local development in Batoke?
3. What are the challenges plaguing tourism development in Batoke?
4. How cam tourism and local development be improved upon in Batoke?
1.4 Research Objectives
This study is guided by the research objectives:
1.4.1 General Objective
To critically examine the exploitation of tourism attractions for local development in Batoke Village, Limbe II Municipality.
1.4.2 Specific Objectives
1. To examine the tourism attractions of Batoke Village.
2. To evaluate the state of tourism development vis-à-vis impacts on local development in Batoke.
3. To investigate challenges plaguing tourism development in Batoke.
4. To suggest strategies for better promoting tourism and local development in Batoke.