Representatives of nature conservation and ecotourism in different biomes of Sri Lanka
Breuste, J.; Jayathunga, S.: Representatives of nature conservation and ecotourism in different biomes
of Sri Lanka. – Hercynia N. F. 43 (2010): 257–276.
Tourism in nature-based destinations is prominent in many countries where mass tourism takes place.
The study focuses on the representatives of nature conservation and ecotourism in all biomes of Sri
Lanka. It aims at the investigation of nature conservation strategies adopted and of which ecosystems are
highly utilised for tourism. Simultaneously, the representation and interaction between biomes, nature
conservation strategies and ecotourism are evaluated in order to identify the influence and effectiveness
of each other. Digital maps show the defined biomes in the different bioregions. The bioregions are
demarcated in accordance with geographical, climatical and biological features and characters. Major
biomes identified in the country are forest, wetland, coastal and marine biomes. The management categories
of nature conservation, namely strict nature reserves, nature reserves, national parks, marine
reserves, sanctuaries, natural forests and wetlands are evaluated in accordance with their objectives,
efficiency and effectiveness. Activities of nature-based tourism take place in different biomes like jeep
safaris, nature trekking and boating and are categorised in different aspects as wildlife watching, bird
watching and nature admiring.
The study shows the dominance of state involvement in nature conservation in different kinds. Many
nature conservation strategies are concentrated on forest biomes. Nature-based tourism is not equally
distributed among all biomes and is mainly focused in the forest biomes in the dry-zone bioregion.
In this bioregion, many national parks are situated and infrastructure for tourism has been developed.
In other biomes is much more potential available for promoting tourism. A physical study should be
conducted to determine what the reasons and constraints of the actual situation are as well as to answer
the question what other biomes offer potential for further expansion and development of ecotourism in
terms of nature conservation and socioeconomic development of the local people.
Key words: ecotourism, nature conservation, bioregions, protected area, national parks