Recovering Ancient Landscapes in Coastal Zones for Cultural Tourism: A Spatial Analysis

  • Eric VazEmail author
  • Dora Agapito


Cultural assets are increasingly being used to enhance local distinction in face of a globalized tourism market which demands for unique and meaningful experiences. Land use in coastal areas as well as aesthetically pleasing landscapes is important of this tourism product. This paper argues that the revitalization of past landscapes in coastal zones, with their ecological, geological, historic, and symbolic/aesthetic significance, contributes to sustainable regional tourism. This is achieved by optimizing the local narrative, appealing for visitors and boosting the local heritage identity and heritage reputation, particular in coastal regions, where urban pressure is at hand. While land use has unprecedentedly changed in southern Portugal, remote sensing techniques in archaeological surveying have facilitated a deeper understanding of historical land development patterns. Cognition of past land use and heritage can thus implement new opportunities to assess the potential of heritage tourism in coastal regions. In this sense, this research aims to analyze the potential of recovering ancient landscapes for cultural tourism, by using spatial analysis and geovisualization. In particular, the study concludes that the Algarve’s archaeological legacy value may contribute to sustainably differentiate the region’s tourism offer by exploring an eco-history product concept derived from the process of recycling existing built environments.


Cultural landscape Cultural tourism Eco-history Cultural heritage Algarve GIS Land use Survey data Spatial analysis Roman land use 


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Geography and Environmental StudiesRyerson UniversityTorontoCanada
  2. 2.CinTurs - Research Centre for Tourism, Sustainability and Well-beingUniversity of the AlgarveFaroPortugal

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