Ecotourism in protected areas is growing rapidly all around the world. Although the benefits of ecotourism are well described, it is not a panacea for solving the complex human needs and resource-capacity paradox in protected areas, unless it is well planned and managed. The notion of ecotourism in legally protected areas is relatively new in Turkey, and therefore none of Turkey's 39 national parks has an ecotourism master plan. The purpose of this study is to analyze the ecotourism potential and to generate initial recommendations for establishing an ecotourism framework for Gallipoli Peninsula Historical National Park (GPHNP) in Çanakkale, Turkey. Three basic research steps are followed: analysis, evaluation, and synthesis. Natural, cultural, and historical features of GPHNP are presented, and a set of recommendations are provided with respect to ecotourism in the study area. Results indicate that the national park has substantial potential for ecotourism activities such as bird-watching, photo safari, wildlife watching, sportfishing, bicycling, scuba diving, farming tourism, flora tourism, trekking, and horseback riding through nature; and this potential is not sufficiently utilized in the current context. The recommendations include that the national park's war history, biological diversity, coastal morphology, and climate should be promoted holistically, and awareness of them should be raised. The topography and other landscape attributes of the park must be protected and sustained.
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Vol. 2010 • No. 263