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Tourism in Gwaii Haanas: Contributions to Haida Gwaii communities and co-management

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Nature-based tourism is growing around the world, attracting visitors to remote protected area, which affects the surrounding communities. As tourism within the co-managed Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve, National Marine Conservation Area Reserve and Haida Heritage Site increases, so does the necessity for a strong understanding of how tourism within Gwaii Haanas is contributing to communities and co-management on Haida Gwaii. This research was based on interviews with tourism operators permitted to operate in Gwaii Haanas during 2016, and key informants from four communities on Haida Gwaii, combined with participant observation and literature review. Findings show that tourism within Gwaii Haanas is contributing to economic, social, cultural and scientific aspects of life on Haida Gwaii as well as supporting the strong co-management agreement that governs Gwaii Haanas. These findings can help inform management decisions and guide movement toward a sustainable future for the tourism industry on Haida Gwaii.
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