Bridging outdoor recreation and nature-based tourism in a commercial context: Insights from the Swedish service providers

Margaryan L, Fredman P. Bridging outdoor recreation and nature-based tourism in a commercial context : Insights from the Swedish service providers. Journal of Outdoor Recreation. 2017;17(March 2017):84-92. DOI

This paper investigates how outdoor recreation demand is reflected in the commercial tourism supply. We bring together the demand and the supply perspectives as well as the domestic and international dimensions, i.e. linking outdoor recreation with nature-based tourism. The data is collected through a nation-wide survey among nature-based tourism providers, catering to both domestic and international markets in Sweden. Four major data-driven avenues of commercializing outdoor recreation are discussed (Winter/Nordic, Summer/Active, Summer/Relaxing and Extractive) and further profiled against external variables, such as types of business operations, international markets or seasonality. The findings offer a new insight into the patters of the commercial supply of nature-based tourism in Sweden, while also building on the previous research and history of outdoor recreation. Evident commercial importance and domestic popularity of such ordinary outdoor activities as cycling on roads, swimming, jogging, picnicking or hiking outside mountain areas are linked to changes in leisure and lifestyles noticed previously. Commercialization of outdoor recreation, a snapshot of which is presented in this study, is discussed as an ever-expanding and diversifying process, observed both in Sweden and globally.