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WHAT ATTRACTS TOURISTS IN RURAL AREAS? AN ANALYSIS OF THE KEY ATTRIBUTES OF AGRITOURIST DESTINATIONS THAT MAY INFLUENCE THEIR CHOICE

Published in AgroLife Scientific Journal, Volume 9, Number 1
Written by Beatrice TENIE (VASILE-TUDOR), Gina FÎNTÎNERU

Agritourism represents a fast-growing industry in Romania, with an average growth rate of tourist arrivals four times higher than the sectorial one. However, there are strong regional differences in the flow of tourists attracted, whereas the ability of the specific destinations to attract tourism flows, given their endogenous characteristics, are insufficiently studied. The paper analyses tourist flows between 2007-2016 from the supply-side of tourist products perspective taking into consideration the particularities of tourism destination (natural resources, infrastructure, socio-demographic aspects etc.). The dependent variable in this study is the number of new overnight stays, as a proxy for the attractiveness of the region. The results of the binary logistic confirm the importance of tourism infrastructure variables, as well as natural environment and socio-demographic aspects in determining domestic tourism flows. Thus, the demographic elements such as population density, young women population rate, young working population rate can give an important comparative advantage to a tourism destination. Moreover, the study highlights the presence of other relevant determinants such as the area occupied with meadows and ponds, as elements of the natural environment.

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