Rural Tourism Development in China 1

by Shunli Gao, Songshan Huang, Yucheng Huang
Tourism ()
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Abstract

This paper provides an overview and brief evaluation of China's rural tourism. Beginning with the form of poverty alleviation through tourism, China's rural tourism has undergone over 20 years of development and exhibited some unique features in its development pattern, scale and business operational models in accordance with China's political, social and economic systems. Government plays a decisive role in developing rural tourism in China. However, rural tourism has been valued mainly as an economic means for rural development during the country's modernisation process. Overlooking rurality as an essential issue in rural tourism may lead development to a wrong direction, which could jeopardise the sustainability of the industry. Copyright 2008 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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