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The relationship between tourist nationality, cultural orientation and nature-based tourism experiences

May Kristin Vespestad1* and Mehmet Mehmetoglu2
     
Submitted: 07/06/2010 Accepted: 19/08/2010

1 Research Fellow, Harstad University College, N-9480 Harstad, Norway; e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
phone: (+47) 99 22 30 42, fax: (+47) 77 05 83 05
2 Professor, Lillehammer University College, Norway; e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , Phone (+47) 61287473
* Corresponding author
 

Abstract

This study sets out to explore how tourist nationalities with dissimilar cultural orientation differ in their evaluation of nature-based tourism experiences. For this purpose 679 tourists in Norway responded to a questionnaire on nature-based tourism experiences. Furthermore, 20 nationalities are segmented along a collectivism-individualism continuum (C-I-C). The resulting segments are then compared based on their perception of an overall nature-based tourism experience, which in this study is operationalized in terms of three dimensions; experience, motive and activity. The results show segments that can be divided into high individualism and high collectivism (and a midsegment).
The segments diverge significantly on the evaluation of the overall nature-based tourism experience. For instance, the collectivistic tourist nationalities place more importance on entertainment, whereas individualistic tourist nationalities emphasize nature, and more frequently participate in hiking. Additionally, theoretical and practical implications are discussed.


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Keywords: nature, experiences, individualism, collectivism, cross-cultural comparison


Citation: Vespestad, M.K., M. Mehmetoglu (2010) The relationship between tourist nationality, cultural orientation and nature-based tourism experiences. European Journal of Tourism Research 3(2), pp. 87-104

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European Journal of Тourism Research