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RURAL TOURISM AS AN IMPORTANT SOURCE OF INCOME FOR RURAL PLACES

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Author(s): ZORZOLIU Raluca | IATAGAN Mariana

Journal: Revista de Turism : Studii si Cercetari in Turism
ISSN 1844-2994

Volume: 7;
Issue: 7;
Start page: 99;
Date: 2009;
Original page

Keywords: ecotourism | tourism | sustainable development | financing | SAPARD | unexploited potential

ABSTRACT
Tourism is the most important economic branch, worldwide, owning 12% of all areas of activity and revenue of approximately 530 billion dollars per year. In the past 10 years we could see an increasing demand for rural tourism and ecotourism, many of the international travel agencies offering ecotourism packages. Our country is attractive from the perspective of international travel agencies, because of unpolluted nature, the authenticity of traditions, the Danube Delta, old forests and not least, because the Romanian hospitality. Rural tourism had been practiced for a long time in Romania but for the past 15-20 years, it was casual and without any form of organization. Tourism activities in rural areas are carried out when agricultural activities takeplace and contribute to the welfare of rural communities that practice it. The development of tourism activities requires attention to the quality of the environment by preserving and developing the quality in the areas that have entered the tourist circuit, controlling the activity quality for a rational use of tourism resources. Our country benefits from EU funding through several programs including SAPARD, taking one of the measures, Measure 3.4, which is called the development and diversification of economic activities that generate multiple activities and alternative incomes.A deciding role in the development of rural tourism is held by the general infrastructure, requiring subsidies from the budget for tourism attraction areas for sustaining, by public administrations, programs to support tourism in rural areas. Rural tourism contributes to the sustainable development of the Romanian rural environment by proper use of local resources, establishing youth in rural areas, reducing the number of unemployed, women's involvement in economic and social life of rural settlements, raising living standards, growth in household rural areas, increasing the industry's contribution to the formation of gross domestic product.Ecotourism is a business opportunity, a market segment growing rapidly, having an important educational component, by teaching respect for the natural environment.
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