Local food, community-based tourism and well-being: connecting tourists and hosts
Mzobanzi Mnguni, Erasmus
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Gastronomy tourism is an enormous opportunity to bring various benefits throughout the territory. Being incorporated within the cultural heritage and cultural tourism milieu, gastronomy goes together with new tourism trends based on wellbeing lifestyle, consideration of environment, authenticity and high-quality experience. The fundamental part of gastronomy tourism is the correlation between cuisine, the tourists experience and the place. Local food can be seen proper only if prepared locally, with the respect of specific culinary traditions of given communities. Authenticity is a key essential feature here. Authenticity should also be a key even when specific local food is prepared and consumed in places other than the place of origin, for example by migrants reproducing their traditional food in the new country they settle. To be authentic gastronomy tourism must rely upon communities’ knowledge. The article proposes a relationship model between local food, community-based tourism (CBT), tourists and local community where wellbeing of tourists and local community is considered. The model aims to underline that CBT can be a strategic link to favour local community development and being compatible with current tourism market trends. It also proposes that a collaborative process with various entities involved is necessary.
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