Emerging Issues for Cultural Tourism in Macau

Hilary du Cros


Recent research on achieving sustainable heritage tourism in Macau advocates a greater collaboration between tourism and heritage management authorities and the local community on reaching sustainable tourism goals. A key theme for Macau in the last ten years has been how the tension between the proponents for greater casino development versus those for cultural heritage product development has played out in government policies for heritage management, private sector tourism development and host community concerns about heritage protection and achieving quality tourism. The indirect influence of the central government on Macau Special Administrative Region’s (SAR’s) policy development in relation to these topics in the last ten years will be discussed in this context using findings from three recent studies by the Institute For Tourism Studies (IFT) and background information collected on government policy and community views. This paper will outline emerging issues regarding demand, supply, and impacts of cultural tourism with reference to findings from four recent research projects. Special reference will be made to over-use and under-use issues, authenticity, and the management of tourism impacts while enhancing visitor experience. Strategic planning and management of cultural tourism products will also be touched upon.

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