Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Visitors count! Guidance for protected areas on the economic analysis of visitation

August 29, 2021

The value of protected areas is often hidden from direct view. Once managers understand the number and behaviour of visitors they host, and the revenues and costs they generate, informed decisions on management plans and tourism strategies can be made.
Demonstrating the positive impact of protected areas on the local economy
can lead to greater buy-in and ownership of conservation practices and
places, less poaching and land encroachment, and may also help offset
some of the human-wildlife conflict where it occurs.
Drawing on case studies from around the world, Visitors Count! aims to
build awareness, knowledge and capacity internationally on how to best
undertake economic evaluations of tourism in protected areas, and thereby
contribute towards a globally acknowledged standard methodology.