The development of a cultural service indicator for Mediterranean wetlands
An undeniable local attraction
For over 10 years, the site receives between 50,000 and 80,000 people a year for daily visits. The attractiveness of the site and its services is important in a radius of 25 kilometers. About 73% of visitors are repeat visitors at least 5 times.
Ecology is not a primary reason for the visit
The major reasons observed for visiting are the seeking of relaxation (27% of visitors), of a recreational site (22%), of "democratic" place (15%), of education through school contract (14%) and picnic areas (11%). The ecological attraction is especially sought after as background landscape and elements of visit context. The lake, birds and greenery are ranked as the three favorable and inseparable components of the landscape. However, the ordinary species of biodiversity (ducks, herons, etc...) and the emblematic species (Marbled Teal, Crested Coot) as well as the ecosystem and the local culture remain poorly mentioned by visitors.
The landscape integrity, an asset to be preserved to maintain and enhance the attractiveness of the wetland
Within the context of the visit, nature is the major attraction expressed by visitors. 27% expressed it as the main interest and 41% cumulate different reasons as nature, landscape, clean air, lake, birds, hiking, visiting the exhibition. In the current strong urban development that characterizes the coastal area of Rabat-Salé, it is really important to keep this oasis of greenery and especially the landscape integrity as it is the main attractive strength of Sidi Boughaba.
Site management: building on attractiveness to improve recreational and educational services
The educational modules and the guided tour of the exhibition show their strong impact on visitors in terms of knowledge acquired on birds, on vegetation and on the lake. In contrast, only 10% of those that visited the site without the benefit of these services have gained at least one element of knowledge. For these customers, who represent over 60% of visitors, the promotion of the knowledge should be made in a more adapted form to enhance the ecological services of the site. This promotion is especially desired, along with the service improvements such as security, the monitoring by forest guards, some tables, a playground, a corner café / kiosk, and a better access to drinking water and to sanitary facilities.
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